paper trail

The New Yorker hires Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor and Sheldon Pearce

Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor. Photo: Don Usner

New Yorker editor in chief David Remnick announced in a staff memo that the magazine has hired Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor as a contributing writer and Sheldon Pearce as a music writer. Taylor, who is a professor in the department of African American studies at Princeton and the author of Race for Profit: How Banks and the Real Estate Industry Undermined Black Homeownership (a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize), has been writing for the New Yorker about “COVID and its devastating effects on Black communities and the quest to transform America.” Pearce has been a contributing editor at Pitchfork, where he has covered pop music and hip-hop.

This fall, HBO will air Kamilah Forbes’s stage adaptation of Ta-Nehisi Coates’s Between the World and Me. The program “will feature readings from Between the World and Me as well as documentary footage from the actors’ home lives, archival footage and animation.”

At Publishers Weekly, Steve Sieck reports on how COVID-19 is pushing publishers to speed up their commitment to digital distribution models, and asks: “What’s next?

Book deals: Poet and essayist Hope Wabuke has sold her memoir, Please Don’t Kill My Black Son, Please, to Vintage. According to the publisher, the book is an “empowering memoir in essays chronicling how a mother provides care for her family in the wake of personal, cultural, and historical racial and gendered violence.” Sheri Fink—whose Hurricane Katrina book Five Days at Memorial won the Pulitzer—has sold her new book Surge to Crown. A statement from the publisher says the new book will explore “the scientific, political, social, and ethical dimensions of the coronavirus pandemic as it sickened millions and created chaos in countries around the world.”

Drafts of Breakfast at Tiffany’s reveal that Truman Capote planned, until the final manuscript, to call the novel’s central character Connie Gustafson.

The new issue of Boundary 2, the journal of international literature and culture, is devoted to W.G. Sebald.

On Thursday, July 30, at 2pm EST, a “once-in-a-lifetime” internet event will celebrate the UK publication of Ariana Reines’s A Sand Book and honor Fanny Howe’s Night Philosophy, with live performances by Reines, Howe, and Eileen Myles. So Mayer will emcee. Tickets can be obtained here.