Carol Edgarian (born April 29, 1962) is an American author, editor, and publisher. She is known for her novels, Rise the Euphrates and Three Stages of Amazement. She is also co-founder, editor and publisher of Narrative Magazine, an online literary magazine.
Life and career
Edgarian was born in New Britain, Connecticut and grew up in the Hartford area, primarily in West Hartford and Glastonbury. She attended Phillips Academy in Andover, Massachusetts, where she graduated cum laude, receiving the Kingsbury Prize and the Pamela Weidenman Prize in Art. She received her B.A. in English with High Honors from Stanford University in 1984.
She moved to San Francisco soon after college and worked as a freelance copywriter, speechwriter, and PR consultant for various high tech and retail companies, including Levi Strauss and the Mayfield Fund.
She entered the national literary scene with a high-profile debut novel Rise the Euphrates (1994). In its review The Washington Post cited Rise the Euphrates as “a book whose generosity of spirit, intelligence, humanity, and finally ambition are what literature ought to be and rarely is today—daring, heartbreaking, and affirmative, giving order and sense to our random lives.” The Miami Herald called the novel “a stunning debut” and Mademoiselle magazine called Edgarian’s writing “so good it can raise the hairs on your neck.”
Set in San Francisco in 2009 and at the start of the financial crisis, Three Stages of Amazement (2011) is both a love story and social chronicle of turbulent America. The novel reached the New York Times bestseller list in its first week of publication, O Magazine chose it as a Top Pick, and Indiebound selected it as a Pick of the Month. Three Stages of Amazement was called “furiously compelling” by Janet Maslin at the New York Times, “superbly crafted, skillfully plotted” by The Washington Post, and “generous and graceful and true” by O Magazine.
Among her other works of fiction and non-fiction is The Writer’s Life: Intimate Thoughts on Work, Love, Inspiration, and Fame which she co-edited with Tom Jenks (Vintage). Edgarian has also written for numerous publications including Vogue, Travel & Leisure, and W.
In 2003 Edgarian co-founded Narrative Magazine.
- 1994 ANC Freedom Award
- Bay Area Book Reviewers Best Fiction Prize (nominated)
- Best Debut of the Year (Chicago Tribune)
- Rise the Euphrates (1994)
- The Writer’s Life: Intimate Thoughts on Work, Love, Inspiration, and Fame (1997)
- Three Stages of Amazement (2011)
- "The Soul of San Francisco," Travel & Leisure, 2003
- "The long and short of it," San Francisco Magazine, 2008
- "Letters to a Young Writer," Narrative Magazine, 2010
- "Acquired Taste", W, 2011
- Interview on NPR's Forum, 2011