Atticus Lish Party

1. Screenshot of the introduction from the minisite. 2. Norman and Barbara Charles, friends of Gordon Lish, deep in conversation with painter Shelton Walsmith.

KGB Bar on 4th st and 2nd ave was as crowded as it could likely ever legally get this past Saturday night. While normal circumstances would point towards the two hour long open bar, managed by an increasingly desolate lone bartender, it was all truly the work of one man- Gordon Lish, the literary icon for the ages, editor for Neal Cassidy and Alan Ginsberg, Raymond Carver and Don DeLillo, commanding reigns at Esquire and Knopf once upon a time, now the friendly man introducing himself, rather than the other way around, to every party guest walking through the door.

1. Writer Richard Ellis beaming alongside dancer Elizabeth Roxas-Dobrish and Robert Dobrish 2. Atticus Lish with wife, Beth.

The true guest of honor was, in fact, the quiet type. Atticus Lish, son of Gordon, has just published a book of drawings entitled Life is With People, with Tyrant Books- he showed up halfway into the gathering, humble and backpack laden beside his wife, just the man everyone was meant to see and celebrate.

And with reason — the book, printed as it is on ruled sheets, is hilarious and sad and political and disturbing in all of the ways great drawings can be. Not for the faint of heart (LIWP contains some unsavory shit) the detailed sketches are offset by simple captions that are whimsical and strange, the work of a clever graffiti artist or depressed poet.

1. Gordon Lish, caught in the moment. 2. Luke B. Goebel and Giancarlo DiTrapano of NY Tyrant, with Lish.

One of the best parts is simply the introduction in which Atticus writes, “My primary goal in producing this book is to meet people with similar interests. It is my way of reaching out. Meeting people is so hard.” With this aura-soaked affair, a decadent mix of young and old, whose work has since been canonized or is soon to be released, there is no doubt the creative community was already eager to introduce themselves.


–Sarah Lerner is the producer of Northside Film and the sales and event coordinator for the L Magazine. She is a publisher with Papercut Press and a regular Outlet contributor.

More Like This

March Madness: Book-to-TV Adaptations Edition

Forget basketball and help us choose the best literary television

Mar 24

We Partied With Padma Lakshmi, Union Supporter, at the National Book Awards

Prize-winning writers spoke out against book bans and censorship at the Oscars for books

Nov 18 - Electric Literature

It’s Time to Radically Rethink Online Book Events

Instead of mimicking in-person events, virtual readings should make use of the possibilities of the internet

Jul 28 - Kate Reed Petty

Free and Cheap Live Poetry Events You Can Watch Online

With slams and readings going virtual, you can now get into poetry from the comfort of your home

May 8 - Gabrielle Smith
Thank You!