Things I’ve Been Up To

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My book The Marginalized Majority: Claiming Our Power in a Post-Truth America will be released by Melville House Books on July 10.  Read more about it here.

“A stirring defense of ‘identity politics’ and the need to reclaim narratives as well as a powerful account of the transformation of a journalist into an activist … Combines the reporting chops of an experienced journalist with literary flair and a conversational, common-sense approach that seems far more heartfelt than dogmatic … There have been plenty of books covering similar territory—and there will be many more in the years to come—but rarely are they as persuasive and engaging as this one.” —Kirkus (starred review)



If you tune into this week’s episode of This American Life, you’ll hear me — and four other women — talk about our former boss at AlterNet. It’s a deeper dive into the lives of women behind #metoo headlines, and I’m so impressed with how the producer — Chana Joffe-Walt — wove the stories together. Listen here.


“How to Take Action – and Stay Sane – in the Trump Era,” an interview with author and activist L.A. Kauffman, is now available over at Rolling Stone. Give it a read.

“You may think you need to be doing something massive for it to matter, but the lesson is exactly the opposite: It’s about pulling together with folks you know in a small group that is willing to actually do things – like show up at your member of Congress’ town hall or office.”


In the aftermath of this presidential election, how do we keep moving forward? My essay on reclaiming these coming years is over at Los Angeles Review of Books. Read “Our Four Years” here.

“What if — rather than ceding the terms of the debate, and becoming consumed with merely defending and responding to his perilous idiocy — we push back with a vision of our four years, the reality we insist on?”

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Pleased to announce that I’m now working as a teaching artist for The Moth’s amazing education program. I get to teach storytelling to high schoolers in NYC, and then watch them perform in StorySlams. Pretty much the sweetest gig. Read more here.

Hot off the (e)presses! A strange little essay about my name. And Alf. And being partially Indian. And partially non-Indian. Check out “Where I’m Writing From” at Kenyon Review.

“I spent my childhood being given cues for when to laugh—and I obeyed. Now I’m like a well-trained dog that recognizes a command but only wants to bite.”

Upworthy gives my book, Go to Hells: An Updated Guide to Dante’s Underworld, some Halloween love. You can read the full article here.

“Roychoudhuri describes it as ‘a series of punishments for people who seem to have temporarily forgotten how to be people.’”

My story on the awesome NYC Real Estate Investment Cooperative is over at Upworthy today. Read it here.


“[T]he beauty of it is that it’s a simple, highly adaptable model that communities around the world can use to take back their cities.”


Why’d I write a book chockfull of new circles of hell? Zest Books asks me a few questions and gets a few answers in this interview.


“I’m an incurable crank with a tiny nugget of hope at my core.”

The Go to Hells book trailer is born! Watch it here: Go to Hells: Punishments for the Intolerable.



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TONIGHT! Come celebrate the release of Go to Hells at Pete’s Candy Store in Williamsburg. 6:30-7:30 pm. The evening promises to be diabolically fun
, with a short hell-themed storytelling segment featuring the extremely talented Brigid Boyle, Kate Greathead, and Justin Angermeyer vying for your vote. You’ll also hear some hell-circle outtakes and feast your eyes on artwork by Jesse Riggle that’s featured in the book.
And there will, of course, be copies of Go to Hells for sale ($12) in case you want to take one home with yous. After-party at the bar!

Go to Hells: An Updated Guide to Dante’s Underworld, written under my pen name, Kali V. Roy, is out today! You can buy it here.






My op-ed about Amazon’s aggressive book-pricing tactics is over at Al Jazeera America today. Read it here.

“The business of the future also looks suspiciously like the business of the past.”

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I’ll be giving a farewell-to-being-a-fellow reading at the Center for Fiction on Monday, May 19th at 7 pm.

My essay “Where I’m Writing From” receives third place in this year’s Summer Literary Seminars contest judged by Phillip Lopate.

You know that “First Kiss” video that’s been making the rounds? Well, some friends and I went ahead and made a parody of it.

In case you’re wondering what to do with yourself on Wednesday, October 16th at 7 pm: I’m reading at the Center for Fiction with my fellow fellows. RSVP here and you’ll be entitled to a high five, free booze, and earfulls of fiction.

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Artifacts,” an essay about my family, the Newtown school shooting, and what happens when narrative fails us, is up on the Rumpus today.

“I’ve been trying to write this essay and failing. Instead of calling it ‘writer’s block,’ I prefer to think of it as ‘having escaped the Muses.’” 

What’s that? You want to see me hopscotching my way through an obstacle course of full coffee cups and squeaky toys? Well, okay.

Very excited to be working out of the Center for Fiction this year as a 2013 fellow.

My essay on memorializing in the wake of the school shooting in Newtown, CT, “The Geography of Mourning,” is available online at Virgina Quarterly Review.


“It’s a strange thing to watch a small hometown transformed into a monument, a memorial. Though the only truly remarkable thing lurking in this is how common that experience has become.”

“Scenes from Occupied New York,” my essay on the Occupy Wall Street Movement, is in the first edition of n+1‘s Occupy! and is reprinted in the German book Occupy!.

“New York City has the highest population density in the United States. Yet we are an incredibly well-behaved bunch. We take our trains to work, and go home to our small apartments to face off with the resident roaches… occasionally stopping off first at the local bar for a drink with friends. But something interesting happens when we do not return to our apartments. We become visible.”

A Place of Worship” won third place in the Wag’s Revue Winter Writers’ Contest and is nominated for a 2012 Pushcart Prize.

My investigative article, “Books After Amazon” makes Dave Eggers’ “Notable Non-Required Reading” list of 2010 in the anthology, The Best American Nonrequired Reading 2011.


Twisted Critters: The Pipe Cleaner Book, featuring my pipe cleaner designs, was just released and is available here.



The kid’s book that I contributed to (including a chart whereby one can concoct their own near-death survival story) was just published. Rule the World: 119 Shortcuts to Total World Domination is available here.


A Simple Migration,” is the runner-up in Our Stories’ Richard Bausch Short Story Contest and is nominated for a 2011 Pushcart Prize. It is also featured in the recently published Best of Our Stories: Volume IV.

My investigative article, exploring the impact that Amazon has had on the publishing industry is the cover story for the November/December issue of the Boston Review. “Books After Amazon” is available here

“What happens when you sell a book like a can of soup?”