A few days ago, I published a commentary on my dis-invitation from the Abu Dhabi International Book Fair.
Yesterday, as I opened my computer feeling even more scattered than usual, I saw a message from a friend at the fair, asking if I was up and could she call. She will forgive me for thinking, “Oh no, what now?” But, to my surprise, she was calling to re-invite me to the 2013 fair. A follow-up email confirmed it.
My friends’ and colleagues’ reactions varied: From the dominant “Yay!” to the secondary “Give ’em hell!” to the critical “Are you really going?”
Perhaps the best thing about my -invitation/dis-invitation/re-invitation is that it has launched a hundred conversations about the difficult relationship between money, power, and literature (as art, as challenge, as commodity).