Critical Lit Events: we love the bookish August nightlife
It used to be that “literary nightlife” was an oxymoronic term, one that evoked Beatnik berets, grad student tweed, and lots of bongo drums. But as these August events prove, literary nightlife is anything but.
As always, the New York City metropolitan area is teeming with events for the average book-lover. Nolita’s McNally Jackson bookstore will be hosting Joshua Cohen (whose latest fiction collection, Four New Messages, will be available in early August) and Vol. 1 Brooklyn editor Jason Diamond. Cohen’s book, which will be on sale, has been described as “a Borgesian collection of tales that mash together Internet porn, the frustrations of a pharmaceutical copywriter, the exposed genitals of a Princeton drug dealer, and a curious writing professor who will not read his students’ stories.” With a summary like that, this event seems impossible to disappoint.
If you’re more in the mood for a Manhattan bar and some fantastic prose, Fiction Addiction at 2A is your destination. The series not only touts big names, but projects the faces of all readers in the line-up onto a 50-foot wall adjacent to the bar, adding a quirky signature to each month installment. Fiction Addiction also sports a $4 deal on all whiskey drinks, the first choice beverage of many an infamous writer.
For those who favor the borough of Brooklyn over the isle of Manhattan, the Franklin Park Reading Series is your ultimate lit destination. Curated by literary maven Penina Roth, the reading series offers up a line-up of emerging writers, indie darlings, and established authors. The next event will be held on August 13th, featuring novelists Tayari Jones (Silver Sparrow), Victor LaValle (The Devil in Silver), as well as Electric Literature columnist and funny lady Courtney Maum and others.
Not a New Yorker? If that’s the case, find the closest Literary Death Match and preorder tickets before they sell out. Like its name suggests, LDM weds competition, humor, and literature, with readers performing excerpts from their work in 7 minutes or less before a panel of judges comprised of writers and comedians. An international enterprise, LDM holds events everywhere from London to Tulsa. You can pre-order tickets here.
Read on, litniks!