Friday, September 16, 2011

Chipchase and Maltravers

At the National Book Critics Circle blog, the one and only Damion Searls not only said nice things about Personal Days, but mentioned it in the same breath as a book by one of my heroes, Anthony Powell. The question: What's your favorite comic novel? (Over to you, D.S.)

Can I name two? Anthony (Dance to the Music of Time) Powell's little-known third novel, Agents and Patients, is hilarious: rogue Freudian screenwriter-adventurers Chipchase and Maltravers try to take dim, well-intentioned, wealthy Blore-Smith of everything he's got. Somebody get this book back into print!

But only humor of your own moment can touch you to the core. The funniest book I've read from the past ten less-than-hilarious years--both deeply moving and literally-laugh-out-loud-in-public funny--is Ed Park's Personal Days, an office dystopia fizzing with formal and verbal energy.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Panel this Thursday (6/16) in NYC; Post45 piece on PD

How to get your book published: From Writing a Query Letter to Signing a Contract
Thursday, June 16, 2011, 7PM

Are you a recent MFA graduate trying to figure out how to turn your manuscript into a novel? Or a a journalist who dreams of publishing the next Maximum City? Or maybe you're writing short stories on the side and looking to craft a collection.

At whatever stage you may be, these prominent writers, esteemed editors, and ace agents will walk you through the process of getting your book published. From rising above the slush pile to choosing an agent, Juliet Grames (Senior Editor at Soho Press), Kirby Kim (William Morris Endeavor agent), Wendy Lee (author of Happy Family and editor at HarperCollins), Ed Park (author of Personal Days and editor of The Believer), Zohra Saed (editor at UpSet Press), and Monique Truong (author of The Book of Salt and Bitter in the Mouth) will share their insights, experience, and expertise. Jin Auh (The Wylie Agency) will moderate the panel discussion and Q&A session.

The Asian American Writers' Workshop is at 110-112 West 27th Street (between 6th and 7th Avenues), 6th Floor, Buzzer 600


"The fact that the reader is not told the race of most of the characters in the novel, even after letting it slip that some are black or Asian, disrupts the assumption that, if one does not know the race of a character in a novel, then he or she is probably white...."

—from Min-Hyoung Song's "Race and Racelessness in Personal Days," at the Post45 website.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Sloane Crosley and Ed in conversation

I'll be talking to Sloane Crosley tonight at 7 at McNally Jackson (52 Prince St.)—more info here! Sloane's second book, How Did You Get This Number, is just out in paperback.

Saturday, April 9, 2011

April doings

File under "!": The great Arthur Phillips on Personal Days, at the Barnes & Noble Review:

"Another debut. In one of those odd burps of culture, 2007-8 produced two novels about office politics and sociology written in the first person plural, Personal Days and And Then We Came to the End. Park's book is the less well-known, but very undeservedly. It is extremely funny, dead-on in its descriptions of slacker work ethics and corporate compromise. And, then, out of nowhere, it's somehow very moving, showing how youth's fragile idealism can shatter under the weight of bad decisions and economics."


I'll be reading this Tuesday (4/12) at the Believer edition of KGB's "True Story" night, with Deb Olin Unferth, author of the memoir Revolution. Doors at 7.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Chair + readings

(Photo from Jessica)


On April 12, I'll be reading at KGB's "True Story" night with Deb Olin Unferth—she'll be reading from her wonderful new memoir, Revolution: The Year I Fell in Love and Went to Join the War, while I'll be reading from...uh...I'll figure something out. (Maybe this?) More here.


On May 4, I'll be in conversation with...Sloane Crosley! We'll be yapping it up at McNally Jackson, on the occasion of the paperback release of her second essay collection, How Did You Get This Number.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Elevator pitch

Number of people trapped in elevators, 2010

Manhattan User's Guide

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Annals of staplerdom

• You know, we were about to deduct points for the fact that Stefano Tonchi’s assistant wouldn’t have her own stapler, but then we realized that in our offices, we are constantly looking for staplers.Plus 2. Seriously, only Grub Street Dan has one, and sometimes it’s difficult to find it even on his desk, as it is constantly covered in an avalanche of free booze and graft. It is good to be Grub Street Dan. Swag and a stapler.
New York's Daily Intel

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Pretend ductwork

Around his plant-strewn work cubicle, low whirring air sounds emanated from speakers in the floor, meant to mimic the whoosh of conventional heating and air-conditioning systems, neither of which his 222,000-square-foot office building has, or needs, even here at 5,300 feet elevation. The generic white noise of pretend ductwork is purely for background and workplace psychology— managers found that workers needed something more than silence.
—"Soaking Up the Sun to Squeeze, NYT

Sunday, February 6, 2011

"Living & Writing New York" — a reading at Fordham this Tuesday 2/8

I'll be reading and participating in a panel on February 8 at 7:30 p.m. at Fordham (the Lincoln Center campus, in Manhattan). The topic is "Living & Writing New York." I'm not sure what I'll read!

The other writers are Arthur Phillips, Mary Elizabeth Williams, and Jim Dwyer.

Rather complex directions here. It's in the 12th floor lounge at 113 W. 60th St.