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As a new writer, it helps to learn the craft from a master. David Sedaris has spent decades as an author and essayist and has several key tips for aspiring writers.



Humorist David Sedaris is a best-selling author known for his sardonic wit and self-deprecating writing style. He’s had numerous New York Times best sellers. He writes and narrates radio shows for the Ira Glass-hosted This American Life on National Public Radio (NPR). He reads his essays on his BBC Radio 4 show Meet David Sedaris. He also writes short stories and personal essays for The New Yorker and Esquire. A great writer like David Sedaris can help you become a better writer in all aspects of the craft, from coming up with story ideas to overcoming writer’s block.

A Brief Introduction to David Sedaris

One of America's preeminent humor writers, David Sedaris is known for his incisive social critiques. He writes about his own life in essay collections and non-fiction books, from his childhood in upstate New York to his high school years in Raleigh, North Carolina. He often weaves in hilarious anecdotes that include his parents and his five siblings—Paul, Gretchen, Tiffany, Lisa, and Amy Sedaris—or his partner Hugh.

First recognized for his story Santaland Diaries which he read on NPR’s Morning Edition in 1992, Sedaris’s writing career has spanned almost three decades. He’s been nominated for five Grammy Awards for Best Spoken Word Album and Best Comedy Album, and received the Thurber Prize for American Humor. He and his sister, Amy—a writer and performer—write plays under the name The Talent Family that run at the La Mama Theater in New York City. Their shows include The Book of Liz, Incident at Cobbler’s Knob, and Stump the Host.

10 Iconic Books by David Sedaris

David is one of the funniest observant writers, often writing about the human condition vis a vis his own life experience. Here are the works for which he is known:

  1. Barrel Fever (1994)
  2. Naked (1997)
  3. Holidays on Ice (1997)
  4. Me Talk Pretty One Day (2000)
  5. Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim (2004)
  6. When You Are Engulfed in Flames (2008)
  7. Squirrel Seeks Chipmunk: A Modest Bestiary (2010)
  8. Let's Explore Diabetes With Owls (2013)
  9. Theft By Finding: Diaries (1977-2002) (2017)
  10. Calypso (2018)