Q

'I'm not a very private person': Elizabeth Gilbert on writing through grief and her new novel City of Girls

Gilbert talks about coping with the loss of her partner and how she managed to write her joyous new novel, City of Girls, during this time of personal mourning.
City of Girls is a novel by Elizabeth Gilbert. (Riverhead Books, Timothy Greenfield-Sanders)
Listen18:56

If you've read Elizabeth Gilbert's bestselling memoir Eat Pray Love, you know the author doesn't hesitate to share the complicated parts of her life with the public.

Since releasing the memoir in 2006, a lot has happened in Gilbert's life. She divorced the man she met in Eat Pray Love, she started a relationship with the love of her life, a woman named Rayya Elias, and 18 months later, she shared the sad news that Elias had died of cancer.

Gilbert joined q's Tom Power to talk about coping with the loss of her partner and how she managed to write her joyous new novel, City of Girls, during this time of personal mourning.

"Grief, for me, has been the biggest creative challenge of my entire life," said Gilbert. "It's a creative challenge as much as it is an emotional challenge. ... I want to face that challenge with curiosity as much as with devastation."

Click 'listen' near the top of this page to hear the full conversation.

— Produced by ​Diane Eros

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