If Lighthouse Writers had tried to snag smoking-hot author Junot Díaz for a Denver appearance in the last year, it probably wouldn’t have happened, notes Lighthouse program director Andrea Dupree. But thanks to a an inside contact and discussions that literally began years ago, Díaz — a Pulitzer Prize-winner and 2012 MacArthur Fellow who teaches creative writing at MIT when he’s not writing his own lauded works — is Lighthouse’s guest this weekend for a sold-out workshop and a couple of public events tonight: a ticketed onstage conversation at Su Teatro, 721 Santa Fe Drive, and a reception and dinner afterward at Lighthouse’s headquarters, 1515 Race Street.
Dupree, who will face Díaz as the interviewer, says the excitement level is high, but her job is to come up with questions that the oft-interviewed author hasn’t already answered dozens of times and that will inspire the audience. “One of our goals is to demystify the writer’s process,” she explains. “Our whole mission at Lighthouse is to get people reading and writing, to lift the veil a little bit. He is someone who is really forthright about a couple of things, including the struggle of writing. Some writers are invested in keeping it in this mystical place, but it’s also not ditch-digging; it’s not like trying to raise a family in the Serengeti. When engaged in the daily struggle, you tend to not forgive yourself for the weaknesses you can investigate in your art.”
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Inside the Writer’s Studio With Junot Díaz begins at 4:30 p.m. at Su Teatro (admission ranges from $15 to $20, and tickets are selling fast); a This Is How You Meet Him dinner follows at 7 p.m. at Lighthouse, for $125. For reservations and information, go to www.lighthousewriters.org or call 303-297-1185.
Sat., Nov. 10, 4:30-6 p.m., 2012