Betsy Berne   Bad Timing  
Betsy Berne    
Reading by Betsy Berne

Interview with Betsy Berne

Read an excerpt from Bad Timing

  There is no shortage of novels today that feature single, 30-something women navigating the rough terrain of life and love in Gotham City. At its rudimentary core, Betsy Berne's Bad Timing falls into this literary genre. But Berne's debut immediately veers off on its own course, her heroine distinguishing herself from her counterparts. Hers is as much a tale of one woman's journey toward self-discovery as it is a shrewdly-observed, hilarious exposé on the society in which she lives. Berne is well-suited to analyze this world; she, too, is a member of the sometimes-unforgiving artistic community that her main character inhabits.

Berne's narrator is an unnamed painter enmeshed in New York's too-hip, downtown art scene. The main characters in her life include art sophisticates and poseurs, her lovingly dysfunctional family, and her tight circle of close friends, each grappling with his or her entirely unique and often hilarious neuroses. The story opens as she meets Joseph Pendleton, an older, married, marginally-famous jazz musician and nightclub impresario. A one-night stand turns into a year-long entanglement, the thread from which the rest of Bad Timing unravels.

In this issue of Bold Type, read an interview with Betsy Berne and excerpt from Bad Timing, and listen to Berne read from her novel.

--Laura Buchwald

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  Photo credit: David Armstrong/Villard

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