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Book Title

The Long Run

A Creative Inquiry
Author 1
Stacey D'Erasmo
How do we keep doing this—making art? Stacey D’Erasmo had been writing for twenty years and had published three novels when she asked herself this question. She was past the rush of her first books and wondering what to expect—how to stay alive in her vocation—in the decades ahead.
D’Erasmo began to interview older artists she admired to find out how they’d done it. She talked to Valda Setterfield about her sixty-year career that took her from the Merce Cunningham Dance Company to theatrical collaborations with her husband to roles in films. She talked to Samuel R. Delany about his vast oeuvre of books in many genres. She talked to Amy Sillman about working between painting and other media, and between abstraction and figuration. She talked to landscape architect Darrel Morrison, composer Tania Léon, actress Blair Brown, musician Steve Earle, and visual artist Cecilia Vicuña. She saw connections between them and to artists across time: Colette, David Bowie, Ruth Asawa. She found insights, too, about what has driven and thwarted and shaped her as a writer.
Instead of easy answers or a road map, The Long Run offers one practitioner’s conversations, anecdotes, confidences, and observations about sustaining a creative life. Along the way, it radically redefines artistic success—shifting the focus from novelty, output, and external recognition toward freedom, fluidity, resistance, community, resilience, and longevity.

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The author of The Art of Intimacy asks eight legendary artists: What has sustained you in the long run?

About the Author

Stacey  D'Erasmo
Credit: Sarah Shatz
Stacey D’Erasmo is the author of the novels Tea, A Seahorse Year, The Sky Below, Wonderland, and The Complicities, and the nonfiction book The Art of Intimacy. She is a professor of writing and publishing practices at Fordham University.
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  • “Novelist D’Erasmo (The Complicities) takes a rewarding deep dive into why—and how—artists are able to go on making art. . . . Artists seeking inspiration would do well to check this out.”—Publishers Weekly
  • “Fierce, funny, and philosophical, The LongRun is a necessary companion for anyone who makes things.—Lauren Elkin
  • “Stacey D’Erasmo takes her place alongside Olivia Laing with these brilliant portraits of artists who have stayed in over decades and the perspectives that have kept them returning to their work. An essential book that I’ll always keep at hand.”—Alice Elliott Dark
  • “Stacey D’Erasmo has given us a tender and fascinating lineage of artists who demonstrate the myriad ways to build a life around an artistic practice and sustain it. Between their stories emerges a queer künstlerroman that had me rapt.”—Melissa Febos
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