- Soft Skull now has a blog, demonstrating to the world that Dan Wickett may have some competition from Richard Nash in the We Never Sleep Department.
- If there was any doubt that Lev Grossman was a chickenhead, his status as Chickenhead of the Decade may be confirmed. Judy Blume? Jonathan Franzen? Tolkein [sic]? C.S. Lewis? All authors in their own right, but hardly the names one would expect to see on any serious list concerned with singling out literature. Then again, given Time‘s roots as a magazine devoted to lackluster summaries of news and culture for mass consumption, the list makes sense. Bawk bawk indeed.
- A seven year old has won a book contract. This kid better have life experience or we’ll have someone steal his lunch money.
- Chinese author Ba Jin has died. He was 100.
- Creative Artists Agency has pledged that it will go after “100 percent market share.” A CAA spokesman also contended that it had settled on an operations method predicated on “100 percent hubris.”
- Chekhov: Not a prude and possibly a womanizer.
- Is a major production of Dickens’ Bleak House the reason for the BBC license fee increase?
- Boston Globe on Sara Faith Alterman: “Getting ”15 Minutes’ published was surprisingly simple. She sent her text to multiple literary agents. One quickly picked her up, and ”My 15 Minutes’ was sold to Avon Trade, a division of Harper Collins.” Simple maybe if you’re a flouncy 25 year old whose author photo will sell the book alone. But try telling that “surprisingly simple” story to some talented yet eczema-ridden 55 year old novelist with bad teeth.
- A spirited defense of Pinter’s politics.
- “Phil, I don’t know what to write about this week.” “Well, Bob, what author do you like?” “Philip Roth’s really doing it for me right now.” “Well, then why not take a road trip and write about it. No penetrating insights. Just rambling text.” “You mean it? I mean, you’ll actually buy a column from me without a point?” “Bob, you wouldn’t be on staff if you weren’t pointless. Now let’s go knock back some shots. Drinks are on me.”
- Vikram Seth hates being late.
- Apparently, Jonathan Safran Foer bridges the gap between the hipsters and the philanthropists. There must be some mistake.
[UPDATE: Litkicks has some interesting memories of Lev Grossman: “He was a nice guy, undoubtedly smart, literary and perceptive….But I also found Lev Grossman bland in conversation, and decidedly uncontroversial….Nothing about Lev Grossman shouted out ‘I will be Time’s book critic in five years’.”]
© 2005, Edward Champion. All rights reserved.