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Stacey D’Erasmo with R.O. Kwon

August 19 @ 6:00 pm

City Lights and Graywolf Press celebrate the publication of

The Long Run: A Creative Inquiry

By Stacey D’Erasmo

published by Graywolf Press

How do we keep doing this—making art? Stacey D’Erasmo had been writing for twenty years and had published three novels when she asked herself this question. She was past the rush of her first books and wondering what to expect—how to stay alive in her vocation—in the decades ahead.

D’Erasmo began to interview older artists she admired to find out how they’d done it. She talked to Valda Setterfield about her sixty-year career that took her from the Merce Cunningham Dance Company to theatrical collaborations with her husband to roles in films. She talked to Samuel R. Delany about his vast oeuvre of books in many genres. She talked to Amy Sillman about working between painting and other media, and between abstraction and figuration. She talked to landscape architect Darrel Morrison, composer Tania Léon, actress Blair Brown, musician Steve Earle, and visual artist Cecilia Vicuña. She saw connections between them and to artists across time: Colette, David Bowie, Ruth Asawa. She found insights, too, about what has driven and thwarted and shaped her as a writer.

Instead of easy answers or a road map, The Long Run offers one practitioner’s conversations, anecdotes, confidences, and observations about sustaining a creative life. Along the way, it radically redefines artistic success—shifting the focus from novelty, output, and external recognition toward freedom, fluidity, resistance, community, resilience, and longevity.

Stacey D’Erasmo is the author of five novels and one book of nonfiction. Her first novel, Tea (Algonquin, 2000), was selected as a New York Times Notable Book. Her second novel, A Seahorse Year (Houghton Mifflin, 2004), was named a Best Book of the Year by the San Francisco Chronicle and Newsday and won both a Lambda Literary Award and a Ferro-Grumley Award. Her third novel, The Sky Below, was published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt in 2009 (a favorite book of the year for the Los Angeles Times, the Chicago Sun Times, and the New York Times). Her fourth novel, Wonderland, was published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt in 2014 (named one of the ten best books of the year by Time and the BBC, also among NPR’s best books of 2014). Her nonfiction book The Art of Intimacy: The Space Between was published by Graywolf Press in 2013. D’Erasmo’s articles and podcasts have been published in The New York Times Book Review, New York Times Magazine, Ploughshares, Interview, The New Yorker, and the Los Angeles Times. She is frequently a faculty member at the Breadloaf Writers Conference. D’Erasmo was a Stegner Fellow in Fiction at Stanford University, received a Guggenheim Fellowship in Fiction in 2009, and was the 2010-11 Sovern/Columbia Affiliated Fellow at the American Academy in Rome. She is currently an Associate Professor of Writing and Publishing Practices at Fordham University in New York City.

To learn more visit: http://www.staceyderasmo.com/

R. O. Kwon’s Exhibit, a novel, will publish in May 2024 with Riverhead. Kwon’s nationally bestselling first novel, The Incendiaries, has been translated into seven languages and was named a best book of the year by over forty publications. The Incendiaries was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle John Leonard Award. Kwon and Garth Greenwell co-edited the bestselling Kink, a New York Times Notable Book and recipient of the inaugural Joy Award. Kwon’s writing has appeared in The New York Times, New Yorker, Vanity Fair, Guardian, and elsewhere. She has received fellowships and awards from MacDowell, the National Endowment for the Arts, and Yaddo, and she is the Stein Visiting Writer at Stanford University. Born in Seoul, Kwon has lived most of her life in the United States.

To learn more visit: https://ro-kwon.com/

What has been said about the work of Stacey D’Erasmo

“Stacey D’Erasmo has given us a tender and fascinating lineage of artists who demonstrate the myriad ways to build a life around an artistic practice and sustain it. Between their stories emerges a queer künstlerroman that had me rapt.”—Melissa Febos

“I suspected Stacey D’Erasmo held secrets about how to really live, and I was right. Here she offers wisdom in the form of portraits—appreciations—each one precise, wondrous, meditative, often sexy, and exquisitely wrought. The Long Run is a revelation.”—Justin Torres

“Fierce, funny, and philosophical, The Long Run is a necessary companion for anyone who makes things.”—Lauren Elkin

“Stacey D’Erasmo takes her place alongside Olivia Laing with these brilliant portraits of artists who have stayed in over decades and the perspectives that have kept them returning to their work. An essential book that I’ll always keep at hand.”—Alice Elliott Dark

Made possible by support from the City Lights Foundation


August 19
6:00 pm


City Lights Bookstore
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