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National Book Award finalists announced; Vivian Gornick on writing and psychoanalysis

Vivian Gornick, 2020. Photo: Mitch Bach

The National Book Foundation has announced the finalists for the National Book Award.  

The Onion has submitted an amicus brief to the Supreme Court in support of Anthony Novak, a parodist who created a fake Facebook page for the Parma Police department in Ohio. The brief states, “As the globe’s premier parodists, The Onion’s writers also have a self-serving interest in preventing political authorities from imprisoning humorists. This brief is submitted in the interest of at least mitigating their future punishment.”

For Lux magazine, Vivian Gornick writes about her years in psychoanalysis, the practice of writing, and the difficult work of becoming the person she thought she should be: “I saw what by now I’d seen many times before: It wasn’t the writing itself that was everything, it was sitting down to it every day that was everything. It’s the miserable daily effort that is everything.”

Ukraine president Volodymyr Zelensky will speak via video at the Frankfurt Book Fair. 

The Nation’s fall books issue is out now, with essays and reviews by Jennifer Wilson, Adam Kirsch, Elias Rodriques, and more. 

The New York Times has a list of fifteen recommended books for October, including David Quammen’s report on COVID-19, Maggie Haberman’s Trump book, George Saunders’s new story collection, and more.