I get a lot of emails about how to be a writer. Outside of obligatory pitching and networking, my only real advice is to write a lot and to read a lot of books. I try to read a healthy mix of fun and challenging stuff. I've been very well served by following my own interests, and I imagine you will be too.  

What I Read in 2017

Swann's Way by Marcel Proust (2/7)
Eve's Hollywood by Eve Babitz (2/11)
Saturday Night by Susan Orlean (2/22)
The Hatred of Poetry by Ben Lerner (2/28)
10:04 by Ben Lerner (3/4)
Spaceman of Bohemia by Jaroslav Kalfar (3/20)
The Company She Keeps by Mary McCarthy (3/28)
Intellectual Memoirs by Mary McCarthy (3/31)
In Zanesville by Jo Ann Beard (4/6)
Ways of Seeing by John Berger (4/10)
The Idiot by Elif Batuman (4/17)
The Anthologist by Nicholson Baker (4/25)
Seven Days in the Art World by Sarah Thornton (5/1)
Los Angeles: The Architecture of Four Ecologies by Reyner Banham (5/8)
The Way the World Works by Nicholson Baker (5/24)
Vox by Nicholson Baker (5/30)
Within a Budding Grove by Marcel Proust (6/16)
Train Dreams by Denis Johnson (6/18)
 

Mrs. Dalloway by Virginia Woolf (6/25)
South and West by Joan Didion (6/30)
Oranges by John McPhee (7/3)
The Metamorphosis by Franz Kafka (7/5)
Slaves of New York by Tama Janowitz (7/7)
Arcadia by Tom Stoppard (7/7)
Dear Cyborgs by Eugene Lim (7/11)
Crazy Rich Asians by Kevin Kwan (7/13)
The Gift by Barbara Browning (7/28
Infinite Jest by David Foster Wallace (9/4)
The Fermata by Nicholson Baker (9/25)
The Pine Barrens by John McPhee (10/10)
Letters on Cezanne by Ranier Marie Rilke (10/12)
Notes from the Underground by Fyodor Dostoyevsky (10/19)
The Cheese and the Worms by Carlo Ginzburg (10/24)
The Guermantes Way by Marcel Proust (12/13)
Priestdaddy by Patricia Lockwood (12/26)
Mythologies by Roland Barthes (12/31)

What I Read in 2016

The Bed Moved by Rebecca Schiff (March)
Problems by Jade Sharma (March)
The Collected Letters of John Cheever (4/14)
The Group by Mary McCarthy (4/21)
The Pale King by David Foster Wallace (5/3)
The Red Parts by Maggie Nelson (5/6)
The Locusts Have No King by Dawn Powell (5/12)
The Unbearable Lightness of Being by Milan Kundera (5/15)
How Does A Single Blade of Grass Thank the Sun by Doretta Lau (5/22)
Magic Hours by Tom Bissell (6/6)


Pretentiousness: Why It Matters by Dan Fox (6/13)
When Watched by Leopoldine Core (7/13)
The Selfishness of Others by Kristen Dombek (7/17)
Times Square Red, Times Square Blue by Samuel Delaney (7/25)
Illness as a Metaphor by Susan Sontag (8/13)
Bluets by Maggie Nelson (August)
The Secret History by Donna Tartt (9/25)
Future Sex by Emily Witt (10/8)
Leaving the Atocha Station by Ben Lerner (10/12)
N+1 What we Should Have Known (10/15)