Curiosities

October 27, 2014

For Her 0

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Leave it to Roxane Gay to come up with a novel format for an essay on the feminist novel. In the new issue of Dissent, she presents eleven theses on the topic, including references to Toni Morrison’s Beloved, Erica Jong’s Fear of Flying, and Jeanette Winterson’s Oranges Are Not the Only Fruit. Sample quote: “Not […]

October 26, 2014

“Speaking of Memory” 0

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In an essay for the Los Angeles Review of Books, Peter Birkenhead goes back to Nabokov‘s Speak, Memory and considers “the way our memories tell themselves to us: in hints, collisions, and rushes, overlapping, upside down, out of order.” Pair with our own Garth Risk Hallberg‘s piece on reading Ada, or Ardor.

October 26, 2014

Love Letter Requiem 0

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“I think of the book as a love letter in the form of a requiem.” Our own Emily St. John Mandel, whose novel Station Eleven was recently shortlisted for the National Book Award, was interviewed for Omnivoracious about writing, apocalypse and the beauty of the modern world.

October 26, 2014

“Platonic Word” 0

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Recommended reading: Edward Mendelson reflects on “how bizarrely Platonic [Microsoft] Word can be” and on writing in WordPerfect, where “the world seems more open, a place where endings can’t be predicted, where freedom might be real.”

October 25, 2014

What’s “Appropriate” 0

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We’ve been following the YA debate quite attentively – I wrote about it just last week – but Sarah Burnes‘s addition to the conversation, a blog post for The Paris Review, is one of the most eloquent I’ve read. In defense of reading YA fiction as a “grown-up” she writes, “The binary between children’s and […]

October 25, 2014

Lowbrow 0

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“I have a theory: the thing that makes you a unique writer hasn’t got so much to do with your influences as it does with how you became a writer in the first place. I think your preferences—your obsessions—come just as much from the first sorts of things you consumed and were passionate about. Whether […]

October 25, 2014

If Shakespeare Was a Programmer 0

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“While it’s easy to dismiss coding as rote exercise—a matter of following rules—it’s worth remembering that natural language is subject to rules of its own: grammar, syntax, spelling. The best writers test these rules, bend them, or break them outright, and in doing so they keep the language alive…. With that in mind, I wanted […]

October 24, 2014

Special Snowflakes 1

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“There are people who believe that readers and writers—at least the right kind of readers and writers—are special snowflakes, existing on a more exalted plane than mere mortals. Book people are educated. They are privileged. They are brave enough to speak out when the emperor shows up naked. They sup on nectar from flowers grown […]

October 24, 2014

Interview with John Darnielle 0

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Recommended viewing: John Darnielle talks about his debut novel, Wolf in White Van, in a video for the Los Angeles Review of Books.

October 24, 2014

“Copywrong” 0

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“At bottom, the argument about copyright is not really a philosophical argument. It’s a battle between interest groups.” Louis Menand writes about American copyright law in the digital age for The New Yorker, and his essay pairs well with the many articles on copyright we’ve published over the years.