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by Jeff Martin
Most reviews of novellas begin with similar elements: the writer’s arbitrary word count parameter, why “novella” sounds more diminutive than “short novel,” and a lament that publishers are unwilling to support the form. This essay is not such an apology.
In that moment, I got it — what all this fuss about social networking was about. Give the tools a try, just be yourself; write what you care about. Weird things will start to happen.
Despite all the trouble technology might cause, when it’s absent from contemporary novels, a big white elephant appears on the page and starts ambling around. (Perhaps searching for an unprotected Wi-Fi network?)
For an eighth year, we asked some of our favorite writers, thinkers, and readers to look back, reflect, and share. Their charge was to name, from all the books they read this year, the one(s) that meant the most to them, regardless of publication date. Grouped together, these ruminations, cheers, squibs, and essays will be a chronicle of reading and good books from every era. We hope you find in them seeds that will help make your year in reading in 2012 a fruitful one.
It's The Pale King's last month at the top. Plus a new Hall of Famer and a pair of intriguing newcomers.
Two debuts last month: a classic work of poetry and a brand new installment of an epic series.
A favorite author of The Millions returns to the top ten. Plus two new Hall of Famers!
Two debuts (including an e-book original) and a YA bestseller returns.
Digital readers and paper books have little in common. But both objects have considerable merit, and this is why I think we should combine the two.
The written word’s last big format change turned out to be a pretty big deal, fomenting revolutions and laying the groundwork for civil society, the scientific revolution, and nothing less than modernity itself.
The writer of the future will crouch in wind-swept aeries miles above the electronic din of the modern world, crafting feathers out of the leaves of old books.
8,000 words strong and encompassing 76 titles, it's the only 2011 book preview you will ever need.
“By the mere fact that they [mechanics] stand ready to fix things,” Crawford writes, “as a class they are an affront to the throwaway society. Just as important, the kind of thinking they do, if they are good, offers a counterweight to the culture of narcissism.”