Cheryl Della Pietra: Gonzo Girl

THU, APR 21, 2016 (38:51)

Cheryl Della Pietra discusses and reads from her book Gonzo Girl (2015). The novel is a fictionalized account of Della Pietra’s own experiences as the assistant to journalist and literary icon Hunter S. Thompson. With the publication of Thompson’s 1970 article titled “The Kentucky Derby is Decadent and Depraved,” the term “Gonzo” was coined for first-person journalism with no claims of objectivity. Thompson popularized the style with Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas (1971). The protagonist of Cheryl Della Pietra’s novel is Alley Russo, a young aspiring publisher who becomes the assistant of infamous author Walker Reade. While trying to help Reade finish his next novel, Alley spends months being pulled along for her mentor’s bumpy ride of procrastination and substance abuse. Vogue describes the novel as “[a] margarita-fueled, miniskirt-clad cautionary tale of lost literary innocence,” while Entertainment Weekly calls it “… a thrilling fictionalized (just barely) account of working with a true genius - until the celebrity-filled, drug-fueled partying becomes too much.” (Image: Flickr/Thomas Hawk, image cropped)

+ BIO: Cheryl Della Pietra

Cheryl Della Pietra is a New York City magazine editor, writer, and copy editor. She has published numerous stories in such magazines as _Marie Claire_, _Redbook_, and _POV Magazine_. After graduating from the University of Pennsylvania, she lived with Hunter S. Thompson in Woody Creek, Colorado, for several months in 1992 while she worked as his assistant. She wrote _Gonzo Girl_ (2015) as a fictionalized account of her experiences as Thompson’s assistant.

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