A former star editor, literary agent Betsy Lerner has been known throughout New York's elite publishing circles as an ace for the last 20 years. Her new book, Food and Loathing, is Lerner's revelatory look at the eating disorder and depression she has battled since adolescence -- the literati she ran with had no idea.
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Pelham, New York
Date of Birth:
August 9, 1960
B.A., New York University, 1982; M.F.A., Columbia University, 1987
Thomas Wolfe Poetry Prize; Academy of American Poets Poetry Prize; Named one of PEN's Emerging Writers of 1987
|Our Book Club Pick|
|Food and Loathing: A Lament|
"The title echo to Hunter Thompson's Fear and Loathing... is no accident or hip affectation," say our editors of Betsy Lerner's confessional work; chronicling her 20-year battle with compulsive eating and depression, it "bears comparison to Thompson's most surreal descent." As Publishers Weekly simply proclaims, "Her lament is a triumph."
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|Advice to Wannabe Editors|
|In a Q&A with the career site Monster.com, Lerner gave some advice to aspiring editors. "Most people have English degrees, but they aren't that useful," she admits. "It's much more useful to work part time in a bookstore, handling contemporary fiction and seeing what people buy and how books are sold, categorized, jacketed and marketed."|
|Also by Lerner||Author Acknowledgements|
|Forest for the Trees: An Editor's Advice to Writers|
"In her many years working for major New York publishing houses, Lerner has learned again and again that writers don't know what editors do with manuscripts," our editors report. "This informal insider's guide to nursing your book to publication is a quirky literary equivalent to the classic How a Bill Becomes a Law. A portable survival school for authors."
|Prozac Nation: Young and Depressed in America|
As a longtime veteran of the book biz, Lerner has edited high-profile authors like Elizabeth Wurtzel, Tama Janowitz, and rocker Patti Smith. In the acknowledgments for her 1994 bestseller Prozac Nation, Wurtzel declares, "Without Betsy Lerner, this book quite simply would not have been possible."
|Photo by Barry Marcus||