New School News

Bad Dates, Good Writing: Riggio Alum Leigh Stein Issues “Dispatches from the Future”

Call Leigh Stein a triple threat.

On the heels of her novel The Fallback Plan (Melville House), the graduate of the Riggio Honors Program: Writing and Democracy smoothly shifts from prose to poetry with her new verse collection, Dispatches from the Future. On top of that, she gives a good interview—check out her hilarious (and slightly tragic) conversation on the New York Times’ East Village blog about her history of bad dates in that neighborhood.

“Once at Cafe Mogador [a date] told me this long, rambling, fascinating story about his buddy who was in love with the daughter of an Islamic extremist,” Stein tells the Times.  “I kept saying, ‘Wow! No way! Seriously!?,’ to show that I was following the story, but then he stopped me and said, ‘Listen. Your interruptions are actually less interesting than my story.’”

New School graduates deserve better. Fortunately for us, Stein found inspiration in such experiences for the poems in Dispatches from the Future, which Publishers Weekly calls “a mix both giddy and anguished.”

Learn more on Stein’s website at

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