"Here is a beautiful, brave memoir that takes us into the heart of a young woman's illness, its pains and terrors and mysteries, yet leads us somehow into brightness. For all its clinical precision of the physical, The Two Kinds of Decay is one of the most movingly humane books I have read in a long time; it is a hard-earned vision of life, every word grounded in both body and soul. Sarah Manguso is a brilliantly talented writer, and this is a book not to be missed."—John Burnham Schwartz
“If art can be described as the paths one takes toward some form of compassion, this distilled and luminous book offers us one such a map. An exploration of a body at a particular moment in its history, narrated by an unsparing yet appealing consciousness, The Two Kinds of Decay brings the reader to a place of grace and compassion that is absolutely breathtaking.” —Nick Flynn
“At the white-hot center of this book burns the intelligence and wit of Sarah Manguso, one of the most brilliantly talented writers at work today. She is a clear-eyed visionary, a connoisseur of the penetrating declarative, an unsentimental chronicler of the horrifying insult of illness and of the desires that drive us headlong into adulthood. With a poet's brevity, with riveting narrative energy, with searing insight and compassion, Manguso leads us into hell and back again; every step of the way, there's the thrill of knowing we're in the hands of a new literary master.” —Julie Orringer, author of How to Breathe Underwater
"In The Two Kinds of Decay, Sarah Manguso has miraculously elevated the act of memory. She has found honesty, fear, longing and beauty in every moment of her young life, giving this book an intensity found nowhere else. You put it down panting with wonder and grief, but never with pity. A breakthrough in the memoir, and in writing." —Andrew Sean Greer
Work in Progress » Blog Archive » How to Have a Career: Advice to Young Writers
by Sarah Manguso Work. Be relentless. All over the world, people are working harder than you. Don’t go to events; go to the receptions after the events. If possible, skip the receptions and go to the afterparties, where you can have a real conversation with someone. Money. Learn to live on air. Buy the best health insurance you can afford.
- FSG's Work in Progress