The Writer’s Center presents a FREE virtual chat about the craft of fiction! We’re joined by Philip Dean Walker to discuss his new short story collection, Better Davis. Phil will be in conversation with Zach Powers, author and Director of Communications at The Writer’s Center.
RSVP below to receive login information (our virtual events are held via Zoom). FREE and open to the public, all times Eastern.
We encourage you to order a copy of the book from your local, independent bookseller or online through Bookshop.org.
Philip Dean Walker holds a BA in American Literature from Middlebury College and an MFA in Creative Writing (Fiction) from American University. His fiction has previously appeared in Big Lucks, Collective Fallout, Jonathan, Callisto, Glitterwolf Magazine, theNewerYork, Anak Sastra, Carbon Culture Review, Lunch Review and Driftwood Press. His personal essay, “The Other Side of the Game,” was anthologized in the 2013 Rainbow Award-winning nonfiction anthology The Other Man: Twenty-One Writers Speak Candidly About Sex, Love, Infidelity and Moving On (JMS Books, LLC). His story “Three-Sink Sink” was named as a finalist for the 2013 Gertrude Stein Award in Fiction from The Doctor T.J. Eckleburg Review and appears in the anthology Pay for Play (Bold Strokes Books, LLC). He has been nominated twice for the Pushcart Prize. His debut collection of short stories, At Danceteria and Other Stories, was published by Squares & Rebels in November 2016 and was named a Kirkus Reviews Best Book of 2017 and received a *starred review. His second collection of stories, Read by Strangers, was published by Lethe Press in April 2018. Kirkus Reviews said, in their *starred review of the book that, “Walker’s scintillating stories crackle with frank sexuality and deadpan comedy. There’s a satirical edge to many of them, but they are always grounded in prose that’s realistic but extraordinarily vivid and even nightmarish.” His new book, Better Davis and Other Stories, will be published on September 15, 2021 by Squares & Rebels. He lives in Washington DC.
About the Book
With his succinct prose and crystalline characterizations, Philip Dean Walker once again evokes the 1980s through the diamond-shattering effects of AIDS among the famous and infamous.
“Scathingly funny, downright nasty, unnervingly haunting, and ultimately heartbreaking, the stories in Better Davis and Other Stories take a very specific moment in American culture—the late seventies and early-mid eighties—and imagine the inner worlds of true-life celebrities, artists, gay playboys, and their good-time gal pals as AIDS shadowed and then decimated a vibrant and decadent generation. Keenly aware of his characters’ failings and frailties as well as their vulnerability and humanity, Philip Dean Walker writes as if Andrew Holleran had ever turned his shrewd lens on the likes of Elizabeth Taylor, Rock Hudson, and Paul Lynde, revealing the messy and tender hearts of large and small American icons who are already half-forgotten.” —Tim Murphy, author of Christodora and Correspondents
“This book is a treasure-wise, irreverent, capable of both celebration and mourning. Walker is a singular talent, able to make both humor and tragedy come to life on the page, and to illuminate the many ways that by choice or necessity, a life can become a performance. Together, the characters in Better Davis and Other Stories create a vibrant portrait of a community at the precipice of the AIDS crisis. In preserving so much of the joy and human connection of this era, Walker underscores and grieves the enormous loss.” —Danielle Evans, author of The Office of Historical Corrections