paper trail

Pulitzer Prize board creates new category; Lisa Taddeo on desire

Lisa Taddeo. Photo: J. Waite

The Pulitzer Prize Board has created a new Audio Reporting award category for 2020. “The renaissance of audio journalism in recent years has given rise to an extraordinary array of non-fiction storytelling,” Pulitzer administrator Dana Canedy said in a statement. “To recognize the best of that work, the Pulitzer Board is launching an experimental category to honor it.”

The Guardian talks to Lisa Taddeo about nuance, intimacy, and her recent book, Three Women. “We don’t want to see ourselves sometimes,” she said of the negative reaction to her book. “I’ve always liked to see myself in books. . . . But some people are like, ‘Those people are fucked up—I’m not like them.’ And maybe there are people who aren’t fucked up over desire, but I haven’t met them yet.”

New York Times Book Review critics Dwight Garner, Parul Sehgal, and Jennifer Szalai reflect on the books they read in 2019. Favorites included Ben Lerner’s The Topeka School, Megan Stack’s Women’s Work, and Susan Choi’s Trust Exercise.

The Book Review has made some staff changes. Preview editor Tina Jordan will take over as deputy editor, and David Kelly will become managing editor. Elisabeth Egan, who was hired temporarily to replace Gal Beckerman while on book leave, has been hired as a permanent preview editor.

Johanne Elster Hanson looks at the rise of the revenge novel in Norway.

Former Vibe editor Jermaine Hall is starting Level, a lifestyle and culture publication at Medium. The website will cover everything “from hip-hop to health, from parenting to celebrity profiles and guest columns,” Variety reports. “The goal is to make Level a home for the mature Black and Brown man, a place where we can talk about things we might – or might not – talk about with our friends,” he explained. “It’s a huge undertaking that I’m not taking lightly.”

“I think the thing about animal stories and the reasons why we connect with them is that we share this planet with them, and yet, they’re so strange and alien to us. I mean, have you ever really looked at an aardvark?” asks editor Ann VanderMeer on the Fiction/Non/Fiction podcast. “We ascribe all of these human qualities to animals, and they don’t behave like humans. They behave like the animals that they are. And yet we still are just in wonder about what they’re thinking, what they’re doing, why they’re doing this, why they’re doing that.”