Paris Review editor Philip Gourevitch told his staff this afternoon that he will be stepping down in April after five years on the job.
Mr. Gourevitch, who is also a New Yorker staff writer, said in an interview that his decision to resign was motivated by a desire to focus his energies on his writing, and that his current book project, which is about Rwanda, is proving too time-consuming to allow for a successful balancing act.
“I want to give that everything,” he said. “You can’t take time off when you’re in charge.”
Mr. Gourevitch’s decision to step down in order to write a book distinguishes himself from a number of other prominent New York magazine editors– hello Jon Meacham, Rick Stengel, and David Remnick!– who have elected to pull double duty.
Asked whether he’d been spread too thin when he was working on his recent book with Errol Morris, Standard Operating Procedure, Mr. Gourevitch said he felt like he’d done a pretty good job holding it together, but that he felt “extremely exhausted” at the end. “I didn’t want to do that again,” he said.
Mr. Gourevitch informed Paris Review publisher Antonio Weiss earlier this week. “Everyone has been enormously understanding,” Mr. Gourevitch said.
According to an announcement, Mr. Weiss and Paris Review Foundation director Terry McDonnell will lead a search committee for Mr. Gourevitch’s replacement that will also include New York Review of Books editor Bob Silvers and Paris Review founder and author Peter Matthiessen.
Mr. Gourevitch said he does not expect his replacement to be named “before Thanksgiving or Christmas.” Asked if internal candidates would be considered for the job, he said that “nothing has been ruled out at all.