I have been writing (mostly) nonfiction for The New Yorker since 2006 and have been a staff writer since 2010. In 2010 I published a bestselling nonfiction book called The Possessed (2010). It was a collection of comic interconnected essays about the pursuit of Russian literature, and was a finalist for a National Book Critics Circle Award.
I have a PhD in comparative literature from Stanford University. That’s one of the hilarious things you can read about in The Possessed. I also wrote about PhDs here, in the kind of essay I don’t write anymore, now that I have grown gentle with age. I have taught at Stanford University and Baruch College. Between 2010 and 2013, I was writer in residence at Koç University in Istanbul. The year after that, I was a fellow at the Cullman Center for Writers and Scholars at the New York Public Library.
Here is a picture of me taken in 2017 by Beowulf Sheehan: