Let me tell you about Alex DiFrancesco: they have strong convictions about right and wrong, and they are a relentless advocate for the people they love. They’re brilliant, ethical, and won’t back down from speaking truth to power. And yet, they are also one of the most tenderhearted, thoughtful people you’ll ever encounter. When I first met Alex, they were living and working in the Catskills, recuperating from a messy divorce. Their days were spent baking pastries for a restaurant and devoting the rest of their time to writing. I remember wondering how they did it. How did they write through all that pain and anger and still create such singular works of beauty? And then, the more I got to know them, everything became clear: writing is not just something Alex does because they enjoy it; it’s something they must do. It’s how they process and explore the world, its people, and their own place within it.Continue reading On Monsters and Mythology: A Conversation With Alex DiFrancesco
Alex DiFrancesco has had a busy year. Their essay collection Psychopomps was released by Civil Coping Mechanisms in February, and their novel All City is being released by Seven Stories Press on June 18. While both books are excellent, this interview focuses on All City. It is an important book, and very possibly a prophetic one. All City speaks for the people whose stories do not often get told, much less told with nuance and compassion.
All City takes place in a New York City of the near future. The chasm between the haves and have-nots is wider than ever, and climate change has sent superstorms of increasing violence to the shores of the city, tearing it down with wind and water. Those with the means always leave before the storms hit, but those without resources and means, those who have nowhere else to go, must remain and hold on to what they can by sheer force of will.Continue reading An interview with Alex DiFrancesco on their forthcoming book, All City