Award-winning novelist and short story writer Ann Beattie reads from and discusses her latest novel, Walks with Men. It is 1980 in New York City, and Jane, a valedictorian fresh out of Harvard, strikes a deal with Neil, an intoxicating writer twenty years her senior. The two quickly become lovers, living together in a Chelsea brownstone, and Neil reveals the rules for a life well lived: If you take food home from a restaurant, don’t say it’s because you want leftovers for “the dog.” Say that you want the bones for “a friend who does autopsies.” If you can’t stand on your head (which is best), learn to do cartwheels. Have sex in airplane bathrooms. Wear only raincoats made in England. Neil’s certainties, Jane discovers, mask his deceptions. Her true education begins.
BIO: Ann Beattie
Ann Beattie has published seven novels and seven collections of stories. She has been included in John Updike’s Best American Short Stories of the Century and has received the PEN/Bernard Malamud Award for lifetime achievement in the short story form. She and her husband, Lincoln Perry, live in Maine and Key West, Florida.