Keynote Conversation: Alexander Chee and Porochista Khakpour

Founders Hall

Join the acclaimed authors of two of the most buzzed-about books of 2018 for an intimate conversation about their life and work. Alexander Chee, author of the forthcoming essay collection How to Write an Autobiographical Novel as well as the novels Queen of the Night and Edinburgh, and Porochista Khakpour, author of the forthcoming memoir Sick and also the novels The Last Illusion and Sons and Other Flammable Objects, will share stories from the course of their long and distinguished careers, touching on the books that have influenced them most profoundly, the ins and outs of craft, and the social issues they’ve tackled in their celebrated essays. Widely published in both fiction and nonfiction, they’ll discuss the unique demands each genre makes on their time and imagination, the similarities and differences in their compositional processes, and the role autobiography plays in storytelling. Chee and Khakpour are exemplary public intellectuals, and they will talk about the importance of political engagement in America today and what literary citizenship means, both online and in real life. They’ll dispense invaluable advice on building a career and how to carve out space for creativity amid the hustle of life as a working writer. The discussion will be moderated by Brian Gresko, who runs the Authors in Conversation series for SLICE literary magazine.


Special thanks to our friends at

for sponsoring our 2018 Keynote Conversation.