This will be my third year attending the New Yorker festival, because that's how I roll. I'm not going to all of these, but if you're making up your literary dream slate now based on available tickets as of posting time, it would look like this. As I pointed out before, signings are free.
David Bezmozgis and Jonathan Franzen, 7PM (tickets) Bezmozgis I know only by reputation but it would be great to see Franzen have more air time than he got at last fall's State by State reading. Also, according to an interview he gave to an Italian newspaper Franzen's new novel will be out next fall, so -- will there be excerpts?
George Saunders and Gary Shteyngart, 9:30PM (tickets) In this hour it would be best to clone yourself in order to make Saunders/Shteyngart, Joshua Ferris/ Aleksander Hemon and Jonathan Lethem/ Colson Whitehead simultaneously. But since my duplicator is broken I'd try something new in Saunders (whom everyone tells me I should or would get into) and looking for more of Shteyngart's winning deadpan as seen at the Brooklyn Book Festival.
Annie Proulx, 10AM (tickets) I'm not a huge fan of Proulx's writing -- the real attraction here is seeing how New Yorker fiction editor Deborah Treisman handles the interview.
"Quai des Orfevres" with Anthony Lane, 1:30PM (tickets) How did a movie sneak into my book picks? Lane's collection of criticism, NOBODY'S PERFECT, is that good that I would more or less see him discussing anything. (Well, except this time, because my mom, who is visiting for the festival, wanted to go to see Malcolm Gladwell -- yes, that Malcolm Gladwell. The relevant parties have already been notified.)
Signings to check out (McNally Jackson, 52 Prince St.): T. Coraghessan Boyle, noon; Junot Diaz, 1PM. I wonder if Bill James would sign my copy of MONEYBALL? Nah, probably not.
The real prize is getting into Calvin Trillin's eating tour of Little Italy and Chinatown, but I blinked and it was sold out. Bad daughter.
Tailing Tilley, 11AM (tickets) The program describes this as "a live, interactive game drawing on eighty-four years of New Yorker history," which has a camp counselor-ish ring to it. But if it's not fun -- and how could anything starting at a place called Galway Hooker not be? -- unlike with your camp counselor, you can quit.
Signings to check out: Colson Whitehead, 2PM; Hendrik Hertzberg and Adam Gopnik, 3PM.
4 hours ago