November 27, 2012

Finding True Love, Finding a Literary Agent 30


Your agent relationship is akin to a marriage.

November 12, 2012

Philip Roth Retires: 10 Lessons from the Professor of Desire 17


People are animals. The flesh is weak. Beware of ideology. And New Jersey is beautiful.

November 7, 2012

The Unelectable in Literature: A Rogue’s Gallery 1


This list considers those literary political or public figures who would not have withstood much scrutiny in the modern age. In contrast to the predictable quality of even the most captivating political biography, these tales favor the eerie or the bizarre over the electable in their consideration of political life.

October 22, 2012

Literary Fiction is a Genre: A List 39


Let’s consider literary fiction as a straightforward genre, like romance or science fiction, with certain expected tropes and motifs.

September 24, 2012

The Amazon Alphabet: From Audio Books to Zoo 4


The ABCs of Amazon: a peek into the reading habits of America and, like it or not, a primer for what’s popular in the world of books.

September 4, 2012

Disorientation: A Reading List 10


“Do you believe,” the journalist asked, “or fear, that the world is a mirage, or a hoax?”

August 7, 2012

The Great Taxonomy of Literary Tumblrs: Round Two 45


Six months ago, I rounded up a list of my favorite literary Tumblr accounts. Alas, six months in the real world is different from six months online, and Tumblr now has grown by a few million blogs. So with that in mind, I’ve decided it’s time for another list — a better list, a bigger list.

August 2, 2012

Dickens’s Best Novel? Six Experts Share Their Opinions 33


What was Charles Dickens’s best novel? It depends whom you ask of course. Searching for clarity, I decided to pose the question to a handful of leading Victorianists. I sent out emails to select scholars asking them if they’d be interested in choosing a novel and making their case. Just about everyone I reached out to was game.

July 12, 2012

The Not-So-Silver Screen: Writers Acting in Film 27


He tries his best, but let’s face it: SALMAN RUSHDIE, fatwa survivor, ex-husband of Padma Lakshmi, plays an obstetrician who is not using enough gel while operating an ultrasound machine. Disbelief has not been suspended if the audience starts yelling, “Use more gel, Rushdie! Use more gel!”

July 11, 2012

Burnt-out Summer Reads 6


While you’re laid out and baking this season check out these books whose landscapes and characters are bone-dry, desolate, charred, or wasted. The ennui will be a perfect complement to your cocktail.