The FSG Reading Series with Ian Frazier

Ian Frazier recently read from his new book Travels in Siberia at the Russian Samovar in New York City.

Some of you may remember Frazier from his bestseller Great Plains; others may remember him from those New Yorker pieces that make you laugh so hard your mouth hurts. (“The New Poetry” from Lamentations of the Father is a favorite of mine.)

Biography

Ian Frazier is the author of Great Plains, On the Rez, and Dating Your Mom, among other works, all published by Farrar, Straus and Giroux. A frequent contributor to The New Yorker, he lives in Montclair, New Jersey.

See Also:

Ian Frazier and Roy Blount Jr. (Alphabet Juice) read at KGB Bar November 16th

Ian Frazier appears on The Colbert Report November 17th

The FSG Reading Series with Paul Murray and Rachel DeWoskin December 6th

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  • Ian Brown

    I’m trying to invite Ian Frazier to give a public talk this July in Banff, Alberta, at the Banff School for the Fine Arts, is there any chance you can pass the letter below along to him? Or tell me how I can get it to him? many thanks.

    Ian Brown

    Dear Ian Frazier:

    My name’s Ian Brown: I work as a roving feature writer for the Toronto Globe and Mail, but in July I take a month to be chairperson of the Literary Journalism Program at the Banff Centre for the Arts.

    I’m writing to ask if you’ll come to Banff, Alberta, in July, to speak to give a public talk. Needless to say I’m a big fan of your work.

    The Banff Centre for the Arts is in Banff National Park, in the Canadian Rocky Mountains about an hour and a half west of Calgary. The Centre has been around for 50 years, and is one of the country’s important incubators of work and talent. The Literary Journalism program has been around for 25 years, and was endowed by publishers and the government to give established nonfiction writers some space and time and money to finish bigger works. It’s limited to 8 participants (we get between 50 and 100 applications every year, from all over the world), who are paid to spend a month in the mountains to work on and finish a piece of (we hope publishable) non-fiction. One of the best parts of the job, for me, is that I get to invite writers and editors I admire–long-form non-fiction writers and editors, that is– to come and give a talk at the Banff Centre.

    The talks are 40 minutes long, followed by 20 minutes worth of questions from the audience, and are well attended by the Banff public as well as by the international artists (painters, composers, opera singers, actors, writers, musicians, set designers, dancers) in residence at the Centre. That means a crowd of between 200 and 400 people.

    The gig itself is pretty painless: the lecture can be as formal or as informal as you like, on any subject, as long as it pertains to the general theme of non-fiction writing, and what you have written and edited. I can’t think of anyone who’d be more interesting to listen to on the subject than you.

    We fly you out and back (your partner can come too, if you want); put you up in one of the Centre’s first-class suites; feed you good food; and encourage you (though it’s not required) to stay for a couple of days, so you can go hiking and rafting and biking, or just plain wander around the Centre and meet accomplished and varied artists. The joint is packed with great stories.

    We’ll also pay you $4000 (Canadian!). In return we ask that you give the lecture and answer the audience’s questions; and that you attend an informal cocktail party and chat, for an hour or so, with our eight participants. You can read their stuff if you want to, but you don’t have to. A lot of people who have given the lecture have had an astonishingly good and rewarding time: they include Michael Ondaatje and Lawrence Weschler and Paul Tough (Whatever It Takes: Geoffrey Canada’s Quest to Change Harlem and America).

    Any chance? I think I can promise that you’d like it. We’ll set up all the details and travel. It’s a gorgeous part of the world, and a keen crowd.

    I hope this interests you. In the meantime, happy new year, and I look forward to hearing from you.

    Regards,

    Ian Brown

    Feature Writer
    The Globe and Mail
    444 Front Street West
    Toronto, Ontario
    Canada M5V 2S9

    416 585 5170 office
    416 859 9549 mobile

    ibrown@globeandmail.com