David Sedaris (born December 26, 1956) is an American humorous essayist and radio contributor. Much of his humor is autobiographical and self-deprecating, concerning his large family life, Greek heritage, various jobs, education, and his life in France with his boyfriend Hugh.
He was born in Binghamton, New York, and raised in Raleigh, North Carolina. He dropped out of Kent State University in 1977, and ten years later graduated from the Art Institute of Chicago. In his teens and twenties, he dabbled in visual and performance art. His lack of success was described in several of his essays. Sedaris has obsessive-compulsive disorder, which he chronicles in his short story "A Plague of Tics."
His first book, Barrel Fever (1994) was a collection of essays and short fiction. Several compilations of his essays have been published in books such as Naked (1996), and Me Talk Pretty One Day (2000). Several of his books, including Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim (2004) have hit #1 on the New York Times Best Seller list for Nonfiction. He is a frequent contributor to the PRI/Chicago Public Radio show This American Life, and Esquire and The New Yorker magazines. In 2001, he was named "Humorist of the Year" by Time magazine and he received the Thurber Prize for American Humor. Although Wayne Wang optioned his book Me Talk Pretty One Day for a movie, Sedaris declined to proceed with the project out of concern for his family and how they might be portrayed in a movie.
He is also a playwright, having authored along with his sister, actor Amy Sedaris, several plays under the name "The Talent Family." These include: Stump the Host (1993), Stitches (1994), One Woman Shoe (1995), The Little Frieda Mysteries (1997), and The Book of Liz. He also co-authored Incident at Kobblers Knob which was presented and produced by David Rockwell at the Lincoln Center Festival.