paper trail

Keep the language crisp and pungent...

Alexis Madrigal

Adam Bellow—son of Saul Bellow, as he must tire of being reminded—has compiled a Buzzfeed list for readers worried about “the ingrained (and often unconscious) liberalism of mainstream popular culture.” Never fear! There is “a growing countercultural revolt” that has “escaped widespread notice,” and all you need to do is turn to Bellow’s website, Liberty Island, to find examples of “the best in conservative fiction”: say, The Holy Land, a “delightfully un-PC” sci-fi novel “reflecting satirically on the Middle East conflict”; or the Will Tripp novels, about a “pissed off attorney at law” (“Spare him your pained expressions of empathy and politically correct euphemisms,” Bellow crows); or Monster Hunter Nemesis, the author of which, Bellow claims, has recently been the target of a “hate campaign” by “intolerant leftists” in the Science Fiction & Fantasy Writers of America guild. For a rather different take on right-wing fiction, check out JW McCormick’s New Inquiry essay on the white-supremacist novel The Turner Diaries.

A recently posted 185-page CIA style manual dispenses writing precepts, defends the oxford comma, and instructs its agents to “keep the language crisp and pungent.”

The Atlantic names Alexis Madrigal to the newly created position of deputy editor, and makes a number of other promotions and hires. At the Texas Monthly, Brian Sweany will take over for Jake Silverstein as editor in chief.

A research report releases payment data on 2,009 deals between academic publishers and universities, showing notable and seemingly arbitrary discrepancies in what the publishers charge their mainly captive clients.

At the London Review of Books, Sheila Heti reviewsThe Love Affairs of Nathaniel P., which recently came out in a paperback edition. Heti argues that the novel points out the intersection of dating and politics, art and economics: “What does courtship look like in a world where people worry about breaking up in light of how much they’ve ‘invested’ in a relationship? In which the ‘market rate’ of everyone—women especially—is as unarguable as a number? And how delicious is it to read a story in which neither of the lovers is particularly lovable, just as there’s nothing lovable about their environment.”

As hurricane season approaches, news outlets are taking precautions—such as disaster-proofing their transmitter rooms and turning to cloud-based hosting—to avoid a repeat of the Sandy blackout.