Before flash fiction became fashionable, Lydia Davis was penning her micro-stories, brief but memorable glimpses into the meaning behind the mundane. Her prose isn’t showy or maximalist, but it is meticulously crafted, and often brimming with pathos behind a seemingly quotidian surface. She’s been awarded accordingly, having received the MacArthur “genius” fellowship, as well as a place in the French Order of Arts and Letters for her translation work. Davis’s new collection, Can’t and Won’t, certainly won’t disappoint readers who have come to expect, as Claire Messud wrote, “records of our daily neuroses and small pleasures.” Davis speaks tonight at McNally Jackson with author and essayist Lynne Tillman, the fiction editor at Fence magazine who most recently wrote What Would Lynne Tillman Do?.
Mon., April 27, 7 p.m., 2015