BELLOWS FALLS — In preparation for an upcoming visit from a prominent author, local attorney Ray Massucco orchestrated a crowdsourced search for a flat-top lectern.
“Mr. Sedaris prefers a lectern that is not very slanted, so the hunt is on,” Massucco wrote on Facebook on Sunday.
Within a couple of days, local book merchant Pat Fowler informed Massucco that she had found one - a suitably quirky piece of furniture that should please one David Sedaris, the 64-year-old humorist and essayist whose work is nothing if not itself quirky.
Mentioning his “sardonic wit and incisive social critiques,” the publicity for the event describes Sedaris as “one of America's pre-eminent humor writers” and “the master of satire and one of today's most observant writers addressing the human condition.”
Sedaris's new book, A Carnival of Snackery: Diaries, 2003–2020, will be published Oct. 5 by Little, Brown and Company. A compendium of his own selections from almost 30 years of his work, The Best of Me, was published in 2020.
Calypso, his 2018 collection of essays, is a New York Times best-seller, and a Washington Post Best Book of the Year. The audiobook of Calypso was nominated for a 2019 Grammy in the Best Spoken Word Album category.
Sedaris rose from obscurity to audio and literary prominence as a voice on NPR's Morning Edition in 1992 with a seven-minute story about his experience as an elf at Macy's in New York City. His voice has frequently been heard on public radio's This American Life.
Sedaris is the author of a number of collections of essays and short stories: Barrel Fever, Holidays on Ice, Naked, Me Talk Pretty One Day, Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim, When You Are Engulfed in Flames, Let's Explore Diabetes with Owls, and Theft By Finding: Diaries (1977–2002).
He is the author of Squirrel Seeks Chipmunk: A Modest Bestiary, a collection of fables with illustrations by Ian Falconer. He was also the editor of Children Playing Before a Statue of Hercules, a short story anthology.
His pieces regularly appear in The New Yorker and have twice been included in “The Best American Essays” series. There are more than 10 million copies of his books in print, and they have been translated into 25 languages.
In 2018, The Paris Review awarded Sedaris the Terry Southern Prize for Humor, and that year he also received the Medal for Spoken Language from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, to which he was elected as a member the following year.
Tickets are $55 for orchestra seats and $45 for balcony seating, and are available at bit.ly/630-sedaris-tickets. Masks will be required for all attendees regardless of vaccination status.
Village Square Booksellers has the book concession at this event. Orders for Sedaris's book can be placed in person at the bookstore or at bit.ly/630-sedaris-books.