In case you missed it, Daniel Handler ‘92 (aka Lemony Snicket) came to Wesleyan last week to speak in promotion of his new novel We Are Pirates. Handler’s visit has been covered by multiple campus publications, and the discord surrounding his visit, in other words, the racist joke he made last year when he was presenting the National Book Award for Young People’s Literature to Jacqueline Woodson, has been dissected endlessly by the press and members of the Wesleyan community. This includes Sonya Bessalel’s ’18 measured and nuanced defense of Handler in this week’s edition of The Argus (seriously go read it).
Provided here are selected questions from Handler’s Wesleying interview with astag_rocky before his lecture in the Chapel (scroll down for these). In addition, we will share one tense moment from a meeting Handler attended with students at Downey House earlier that day:
You probably know him better as Lemony Snicket (author of the incredibly successful A Series of Unfortunate Events books), but Wesleyan alum Daniel Handler ’92 has been in the news quite a bit for the past week or two. The downside? It hasn’t always been in the most positive light.
So, let’s break it down.
Lemony Snicket sure knows a thing or two about fear. The mysterious Daniel Handler ’92, author of A Series of Unfortunate Events, will be taking over the Huffington Post Book’s Twitter account (@HuffPostBooks) this afternoon from 3:15 PM to about 3.45 PM.
The topic of discussion will be fear. And not just because Snicket/Handler (Snicker?) is sort of a creepy guy. (He did this sort of shindig once before, and the topic was love, strange enough.) He’s releasing a new book this week called The Dark, which sounds just as weird and awesome as all his other books:
Laszlo is afraid of the dark. The dark lives in the same house as Laszlo. Mostly, though, the dark stays in the basement and doesn’t come into Lazslo’s room. But one night, it does.This is the story of how Laszlo stops being afraid of the dark. With emotional insight and poetic economy, two award-winning talents team up to conquer a universal childhood fear.
This may be your only chance to interact with the otherwise-social-media-absent Snicket. According to HuffPostBooks:
All you have to do is leave your questions about FEAR in the comments below or tweeted at us using the hashtag #AskSnicket. Mr Snicket will start tweeting his advice this Friday, April 5th.
Handler: “I’m aware of the fact that I’m a semi-pretentious liberal arts student. I don’t think anything I feel is terribly important to anybody else.”
Continuing our recent slew of notable alumni coverage (never change, Das Racist, Joss Whedon ’87, bear-fighting Vermont governor Peter Shumlin ’79), here’s one I recently stumbled upon in the archives. On February 21, 1992, The Argus profiled a student poet, a senior at the time from California. His name was Daniel, and he had made it to the Connecticut Students Poet reading. He even skipped his Chaucer class to save his raspy voice. Today, he is Daniel Handler ’92—or Lemony Snicket, as the case may be.