Shawn Colvin’s Survival Story

The Austin-based singer-songwriter talks about her new autobiography, Diamond in the Rough, and her sixth studio album.

Last Tuesday, with the release of the memoir, Diamond in the Rough, Shawn Colvin, a Grammy-winning singer-songwriter based in Austin, officially added “author” to her biography. In an ambitious bit of old media, cross-promotional synergy, Colvin’s publisher, William Morrow/Harper Collins, has doubled down and timed the book’s release to coincide with her first new studio album in six years.

“It’s a double opportunity to fail,” Colvin said. “I’m not supposed to say that. But it’s scary.”

Commercial concerns aside, Colvin insisted that she is more hopeful—and far less internally conflicted—about her career than ever. But fear is the primary antagonist of Diamond in the Rough, a book she characterizes as “a stick with it, keep pushing through, survival story.” What’s there to survive? Anorexia. Clinical depression. Addiction. Motherhood. Career crisis. And men. Lots of men. (“I hope it’s comical for readers to keep track of them,” she said. “That was my intention.”)

“I’d like to think I’ve overcome,” Colvin said. “I was not a person that

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