At 48, photographer and writer Bill Hayes moved to New York City, determined to change his life after the death of his partner. A lifelong insomniac, he became captivated by his new world, wandering the streets at night with his camera. He also fell in love with his neighbour, Oliver Sacks. He talks to Stephen Metcalf about Insomniac City: New York, Oliver, and Me, his loving tribute to Sacks and to New York, and his tender insights into living with both.

Supported by Rowena Danziger AM and Ken Coles AM.

Bill Hayes (International)

Bill Hayes is a writer, photographer and contributor to the New York Times. He is the author of Insomniac City: New York, Oliver, and Me, an intimate glimpse into his relationship with the late Oliver Sacks. He is currently at work on a new book, Sweat: A History of Exercise, as well as a collection of his New York street photography. His other books include Sleep Demons; Five Quarts; and The Anatomist. Hayes is a recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship in nonfiction, and has been a Visiting Scholar at the American Academy in Rome. According to the New York Times, Hayes ‘has an unusual set of skills ... He is part science writer, part memoirist, part culture explainer.’

Stephen Metcalf (International)

Stephen Metcalf is Slate's critic at large and a host of the Culture Gabfest. He is working on a book about the 1980s.