Books

NaNoWriMo Is Upon Us: How to Get Inspired Even If You’re Not Participating

A day before it begins, NaNoWriMo, the November novel write-a-thon that boasts half a million participants rushing in tandem towards 50,000-word rough drafts, is already giving me a major dose of writerly anxiety. Writers love it, agents supposedly dread it, but one way or another, a lot of writing gets done. … Read More

  • 0

A Maine Native Judges the Accents in HBO’s Masterful ‘Olive Kitteridge’

Watching Lisa Cholodenko’s magnificent HBO miniseries Olive Kitteridge, adapted from the wonderful Pulitzer Prize-winning novel-in-stories by Elizabeth Strout, I was full of glee: “They went full New England!” I said out loud. Because flinty Frances McDormand and Richard Jenkins, playing Olive and her husband Henry, really sounded like they sort of, kind of came from Maine. … Read More

  • 0

10 Must-Read Books For November

Is it a drizzly November in your soul? Don’t worry, we feel it, too. Thankfully, November is a pretty great month for books — and especially, as it turns out, for books of essays. It’s also the launch of the awards season in literary publishing, so there are plenty of big-name novels and new discoveries to be had. Ever read Denis Johnson? Richard Ford? Meline Toumani? If not, then hopefully we can introduce… Read More

  • 0

Adorable Photos of Happy Dogs Riding in Cars

What makes Dogs in Cars such a perfect book is that it delivers on exactly what it promises: photos of dogs in cars. Captured by photographer Lara Jo Regan, Dogs in Cars features over 100 dogs — more than half of them rescues — being utterly adorable as they cruise around California in both modern and vintage cars. It’s impossible not to smile when you see a happy dog sticking his head out of a car window. This exclusive gallery from the book, which is out November 3, captures that feeling. … Read More

  • 0

5 Small Publishers Who Are Changing the Face of the Industry

The publishing industry is changing (and fast). But while many of us gawk at the shadow deals and vicious feuds between Amazon and the Big Five publishers — events that really seem to drive publishing into an unpredictable future — these small publishers and outlets are slyly changing the industry for the better. Not content with simply publishing great writing, these innovators challenge both how and where you can find literature in 2014 and beyond. … Read More

  • 0

10 Creepy and Haunting Poems About Ghosts, Madness, and Fairy Abductions

With Halloween coming up and spookiness in the air, it seemed like a good time to share ten of the most haunting, uncanny, and unsettling poems — that are also the most beautiful. … Read More

  • 0

In Praise of Literary Failure

I’ll be honest: I’m baffled by the contemporary mania for the slogan “fail better.” Sure, in context, I appreciate Samuel Beckett’s famous line, but I can’t shake the notion that it comes from a piece called Worstward Ho. “Ever tried,” he writes, “Ever failed. No matter. Try again. Fail again. Fail better.” The way it’s often used today, “fail better” implies that we’re lurching and stumbling, toddler-like, toward a better world. But the speaker in Beckett’s fiction isn’t moving toward success; he’s moving worstward. If we take the Oxford English Dictionary’s first-order definition of failure as a “lack of success,” we can appreciate that to fail better is to screw up more drastically, more spectacularly than ever before. To “fail better” is to lurch and stumble ever closer to the abyss. … Read More

  • 0

Discover Wonder Woman’s Queer, Kinky Feminist History in Jill Lepore’s ‘The Secret History of Wonder Woman’

In Jill Lepore’s The Secret History of Wonder Woman, the noted author of many crucial books (including Book of Ages: The Life and Opinions of Jane Franklin), Harvard professor, and New Yorker staff writer turns her eye to some secret identities that we never knew about: the cultural history and personal arcana that led to Wonder Woman, the best super heroine in comics. … Read More

  • 0

Shocker! Elizabeth Gilbert, Author of ‘Eat, Pray, Love’ Doesn’t Meditate That Much

Elizabeth Gilbert, you minx! After writing a gigundo bestseller (and so many other great books, too) about your… Read More

  • 0

‘Tinseltown,’ ‘Classic Hollywood,’ and the Secret, Sexy History of Movie Scandals

“To the boys and the girls of the land these mock heroes and heroines have been pictured and painted, for box office purposes, as the living symbol of all the virtues,” Ed Roberts wrote in 1922. “Privately they have lived, and are still living, lives of wild debauchery.” Roberts, a former editor of the movie magazine Photoplay, wrote those words in the introduction of The Sins of Hollywood: An Exposé of Movie Vice, a slender volume that cast a decidedly more cynical eye on the stars of Tinseltown than the worshipful periodical where he’d previously worked. Cataloging and detailing the gossipy whispers surrounding such figures as Roscoe “Fatty” Arbuckle, Rudolph Valentino, and Mabel Normand, Sins was aimed squarely at a public starving for dirty details, imagining their silver-screen faves drifting through Hollywood’s wild gin riots and cocaine soirees and outrageous orgies, readers simultaneously tsk-tsking their indulgences and living vicariously through them. … Read More

  • 0
Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 8,016 other followers