All posts by Christopher Farley

Luke Perry–and the 1990s–RIP

Luke_Perry_by_Gage_SkidmoreLuke Perry is dead.

To some, it may just be the sad passing of an actor.

To people who lived through the 1990s, it’s a little more.

Perry played Dylan McKay on “Beverly Hills, 90210.” To put it in Baby Boomer terms, he was kind of the Fonz on “Happy Days” of the 1990s. To put it in millennial terms, he was kind of the Jughead Jones on “Riverdale” of his day.

Actually, maybe millennials get it without the translation–Perry also appeared on “Riverdale” as Fred Andrews, Archie’s dad.

“Beverly Hills, 90210″ was a big part of the TV culture of the 1990s. It spanned the decade, running from from October 4, 1990 to May 17, 2000. There were just reports of a possible reboot of the show.

The 1990s are back because the 90s never left. We still watch 90s movies and TV shows and we still listen to 90s music.

The new movie “Captain Marvel” is set in the 1990s and the advertising campaign is pushing the music and pop culture of the period. I have a new novel coming out called “Around Harvard Square” that’s set in the 1990s and I named every chapter with a song from decade, like “Ex-Factor” and “Kick in the Door” and “Come As You Are.” There was a lot of great music made in the 1990s, from alternative rock to gangsta rap to the Fugees and Lauryn Hill.

Now that the 52-year-old Perry has passed on, everyone who is around his age–like me–is thinking just a little bit more about the 1990s, the pop culture of the period and their own mortality.

RIP, Dylan.

“Around Harvard Square” is available for preorder and will also be released on Audible.

‘Around Harvard Square’ is Coming to Harvard Book Store

AroundHarvardSquarecoverAround Harvard Square” is coming to Harvard!

I’ll be discussing my new novel at Harvard Book Store, 1256 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge, MA 02138 on April 30, at 7pm. The store is right across the street from Harvard Yard.

I started writing “Around Harvard Square” when I was a freshman at Harvard and now I’m bringing the finished book back to where it began. It only took 30 years or so.

For more details you can visit the Harvard Book Store website.

“Around Harvard Square” is available for pre-order right now!

I Join the Tech Revolution at Amazon Inc.’s Audible

42478969_10156819770367608_8552965862863142912_nI’ve left my post as a senior editor at the Wall Street Journal–I’m now an Executive Editor at Amazon Inc.’s Audible! I’m working with actors, entertainers, comedians, celebrities, public intellectuals, journalists, screenwriters, authors and others to create original audio content. It’s all very exciting stuff!

I also have a new novel coming out, “Around Harvard Square,” due out April 1, 2019. More about that later!

‘Around Harvard Square’ and the Harvard Lampoon

Sketch by Susan Arena.
Sketch by Susan Arena.

I just watched a “60 Minutes” segment about the Harvard Lampoon. Part of the segment dealt with the fact that women and people of color haven’t been very well represented in the ranks of Harvard Lampoon staffers and on the roster of comedy TV shows. That’s one of the themes of my upcoming novel, “Around Harvard Square,” about a Jamaican-American freshman competing to get on the staff of a certain Ivy League humor magazine. Erich Segal called my book “the funniest book about Harvard since ‘Love Story,’ or at least he might have said that if “Love Story” were a comedy and if Segal hadn’t died in 2010. I also think John Updike and George Plimpton would have totally agreed with Segal about my book if not for that same they died years ago problem.  Anyhoo, you can read the book next year and judge for yourself. Comedy is never having to say you’re sorry.

‘Around Harvard Square’ by C.J. Farley Coming on Akashic Books in 2019

EmmaLampoonMy new novel “Around Harvard Square” is set to be published by Akashic Books in 2019!

Here’s how it was described on GoodReads and Publishers Lunch: “a satirical novel about a Jamaican-American freshman and his misfit international friends who compete against ridiculous odds to join the staff of Harvard University’s legendary humor magazine, in a story exploring race and class, sex and philosophy, collegiate pranks and Ivy League secrets.”

Back in the day, I was an editor at the Harvard Lampoon. I’m not saying it’s about the Harvard Lampoon, but I’m not not saying it’s about the Harvard Lampoon.

More to come!

‘Forged in Crisis’ Author Nancy Koehn Dines with the Wall Street Journal

I had a great interview last week with Harvard Business School professor Nancy Koehn, author of “Forged in Crisis,” as part of the Wall Street Journal’s C-Suite Book Club series. “Forged” is a really fascinating book about how various leaders, from Frederick Douglass to Rachel Carson, coped with turbulent times and what we can learn from them.

Here I am with author Nancy Koehn at New York's Bouley Botanical, the restaurant that hosed my C-Suite Book Club event.
Here I am with author Nancy Koehn at New York’s Bouley Botanical, the restaurant that hosted my C-Suite Book Club event.