I Was an Also-Ran!

The Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Best American Essays of 2010 has just been released and I discovered my essay “Jerry” about the “pathologically loquacious failed actor” (sorry, Jerry) who’s cut my hair for the past fifteen years was shortlisted at the back as a “notable essay of the year.” The stuff that did make it as a “best”, as usual, is excellent—Philip Lopate on “The Unknowable Brooklyn”, Ian McEwan on John Updike, and my favorite (self-described) D-List writer, Elif Batuman, on the murder of Leo Tolstoy. (Actually, according to her blog, she now considers herself to have clawed up into the ranks of the C-List.)

Also while tooting my own horn, next month sees the publication of More New York Stories: The Best of the City Section of the New York Times, edited by Constance Rosenblum, in which Children of Darkness, my profile of the men and woman who explore the city’s rotting infrastructure (sometimes naked!) is anthologized. Check out the book’s web site for details of upcoming readings from its contributors.


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