Join us to celebrate the launch of Fiona's first novel!
October 15, 7pm - 9pm
Octopus Book, 116 Third Ave.
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In the aftermath of a reality TV deal gone wrong, Fiona Alison Duncan asks the question, Can you rewrite your life? The answer, her debut novel Exquisite Mariposa, follows a cast of housemates as they navigate questions of art making and economies, breakups and breakdowns, and the internet and its many obsessions.
Given the initials F.A.D. at birth, Fiona Alison Duncan has always had an eye for observing the trends around her. But after years of trying to please others, looking for answers in books and astrological charts, and clocking endless hours as a celebrity journalist just to make rent, Fiona discovers another way of existing: in the Real, a phenomenological state few humans live in.
Fiona’s journey to the Real takes her to Koreatown, Los Angeles, where she sublets a room in La Mariposa. There she meets a cast of friends and lovers, like Amalia, an artist whose muse is her pet pigeon; Lucien, an infamous philanderer; and Morgan, whose anxiety keeps her from ever sitting still. When Fiona is offered the chance to turn her new household into a reality TV show, she jumps at the opportunity—but it isn’t long before she begins to question this new script.
In the midst of her Saturn Return, Fiona pulls the plug on the reality TV deal, heals a few addictions, and returns to writing with Exquisite Mariposa, a debut novel starring her housemates as they ask questions of survival, art, love, language, and the possibilities of rewriting one’s life.
Fiona Alison Duncan is a Canadian American artist, writer, and organizer. Born in London, Ontario, she grew up between Toronto, Ottawa, and Montreal, where she worked at Librairie Drawn & Quarterly. Duncan is the founding host of Hard to Read, a literary social practice. Her writing has appeared in Adult, Canadian Art, Cura, Spike Art Quarterly, and Ssense, among other publications. She lives in New York.
"An unapologetically raw account of coming of age broke in Trump-era Los Angeles in the social media-saturated Now, this meditation (almost manifesto?) on materialism, media, power, performance, and sexuality uses inventive, of-the-moment language to tackle that circuitous route to self-discovery that is your twenties—in a startlingly original way." —Lilibet Snellings, author of Box Girl: My Part Time Job as an Art Installation