David Sedaris, whose personal essays and humorous social commentary have earned him recognition as one of America’s greatest living humor writers, will be the speaker for the Lackawanna County Library System’s 2021 American Masters Lecture, Wednesday, September 8 at 7 p.m. in the Scranton Cultural Center.
Free tickets for the event will be available beginning Monday, July 26 at Lackawanna County libraries and online beginning August 9.
Sedaris is the author of 11 collections of essays, many of which appeared first in The New Yorker.
The titles of his books alone suggest the wit to be found within: 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).
His most recent collection of essays, Calypso, published in 2018, was 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.
In addition to articles and books, Sedaris has gained an audience through his commentaries on CBS Sunday Morning and his voice has become known from National Public Radio.
He was born in Johnson City, New York, where his father worked as an IBM engineer before moving his family to Raleigh, North Carolina, where Sedaris grew up.
Throughout his teens and twenties, Sedaris experimented with visual and performance art, and the failure he experienced then gave him fodder for several early essays.
His pieces regularly appear in The New Yorker and have twice been included in “The Best American Essays.” There are over ten million copies of his books in print and they have been translated into 25 languages.
“We are extremely proud to be hosting David Sedaris during his tour of American cities and campuses,” said Mary Garm, director of the Lackawanna County Library System.
“Because we expect such a large turnout, we are starting ticket distribution in the System’s libraries,” she added. “That will give regular library patrons the first opportunity to obtain seats for the lecture.”
2019’s speaker was Colson Whitehead, Pulitzer Prize and National Book Award winner for his 2016 novel The Underground Railroad. His book, The Nickel Boys, published in 2019, won the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction. His most recent book, Harlem Shuffle, is slated for publication in September 2021.