paper trail

Prince is writing a memoir...


On Friday night in New York’s meatpacking district, Prince announced that he is writing a memoir. “The good people of Random House have made me an offer I can’t refuse!” said the musician. The book, titled The Beautiful Ones, will be published by Random House imprint Spiegel & Grau in fall 2017. Dan Piepenbring, the web editor of the Paris Review, will cowrite. “He’s a good critic,” Prince said. “That’s what I need. Not a yes man."

The winners of the National Book Critics Circle Awards, which were announced on Thursday last week, have listed some of their biggest influences. The Argonauts author Maggie Nelson notes the importance of Roland Barthes, while Paul Beatty, whose The Sellout won for fiction, tips his hat to Richard Pryor, Bruce Lee, and Bugs Bunny.

The New York Times’s public editor Margaret Sullivan examines the paper’s decision to make changes to an online article about Bernie Sanders, “turning it from almost glowing to somewhat disparaging” (and without notifying readers that any changes had been made). Her conclusion: “The changes to this story were so substantive that a reader who saw the piece when it first went up might come away with a very different sense of Mr. Sanders’s legislative accomplishments than one who saw it hours later. (The Sanders campaign shared the initial story on social media; it’s hard to imagine it would have done that if the edited version had appeared first.)” She also notes that except for the rare editor’s note that appears at the end of a story, the Times doesn’t have a method for being transparent regarding changes online.

Three years in the making, Moby Dick: The Big Read, an audio recording of Herman Melville’s classic started by author Philip Hoare and artist Angela Cockayne, is now complete. Readers include Tilda Swinton, John Waters, China Mieville, Will Self, Tony Kushner, Musa Okwonga, and Prime Minister David Cameron.

Director Zack Snyder (Watchmen, Superman v. Batman) recently told the Hollywood Reporter that he’s working on developing Ayn Rand’s script for her novel The Fountainhead. “I've always felt like The Fountainhead was such a thesis on the creative process and what it is to create something,” Snyder says.