paper trail

Tana French announces new novel; David Barboza starts China-focused digital magazine

Tana French

Tana French has announced a new novel. The Searcher, which follows a retired detective living in Ireland who returns to work “when a local kid alerts him to his brother’s disappearance,” will be published by Viking in October. French tells Entertainment Weekly that she was inspired to write the new book by her last novel, The Witch Elm. “So much of it was about what was going on inside the narrator’s head. . . . The character in The Witch Elm just goes through this arc from being the golden boy to being a wreck,” she said. “I didn’t want to write that again.”

Former New York Times Shanghai bureau chief David Barboza is starting a new China-focused digital magazine. The Wire China will publish weekly and will also host a database of information on Chinese businesses. “Traditionally, journalists are on one side and they do their research, and then they throw it away and don’t give it to anyone else,” Barboza told NiemanLab. “I love a library, I love research, I love data, and I think how wasteful is it that most journalists throw away or never use or don’t pass on any of their notes or records. Everyone that comes behind them does the research all over again.”

As advertising demand decreases due to COVID-19, the New York Post has announced cost-cutting measures including a hiring freeze, furloughs, layoffs, and reduced or eliminated freelance budgets, the Daily Beast reports. “The paper is dying,” one staffer said.

At The Baffler, Kim Kelly looks at the ways businesses and employers mold the definition of “essential” to benefit themselves.

NPR’s public editor Kelly McBride responds to online criticism of a recent Morning Edition story about “the benefits and drawbacks of the federally enhanced unemployment benefits.” McBride notes that among other failings, the producers failed to interview any workers for the story. McBride explains that talking to employees rather than owners “would have given listeners a window into the economic reality . . . by answering some questions like: How much money did you make? Did you experience a decline in tips? What did you want Marietta to do? What will you do if the store opens and your job becomes available before your benefits run out?”