paper trail

The T. S. Eliot Prize shortlist has been announced; Alex Sujong Laughlin on behind-the-scenes work in media

Kevin Young. Photo: Melanie Dunea

For Study Hall, Alex Sujong Laughlin reflects on a decade of work as a ghostwriter, a social media manager, and a podcast producer. Working behind the scenes made her realize the myth of individual genius: “To recognize that a ghostwriter, or producer, or a professional of one of a dozen other careers that don’t get performed in the spotlight, has irreplaceable skill and experience would demean the singular and incomparable gift of the person at center stage.”

Andrew Key considers The Distance Cure, Hannah Zeavin’s new book on teletherapy, for The Point. Against the assumption that therapy is more effective when it takes place via in-person meetings, “Zeavin’s book argues that the distance and separation of remote therapies have been present in talking cures right from their beginnings in fin-de-siècle Vienna.”

The jury behind France’s top literary prize, the Prix Goncourt, has been accused of two ethical breaches. One of the authors with a book on the shortlist is the boyfriend of one of the judges, Camille Laurens. At Gawker, Jenny G. Zhang immerses herself in the scandal: “While this may appear to be a conflict of interest, the jury decided it was okay to allow Laurens to vote on her partner’s livre parce qu’ils ne sont pas married or in a civil union, and il n’y a pas un rule against her voting.” While the Goncourt secretary has defended this decision, he said that Laurens’s harsh review of another book that made the shortlist is a clear breach of the academy’s rules.

For the London Review of Books, Joanna Biggs writes about the rhythm of remembering in Annie Ernaux’s memoirs: “Reading her is like getting to know a friend, the way they tell you about themselves over long conversations that sometimes take years, revealing things slowly, looping back to some parts of their life over and over, hardly mentioning others.”

The shortlist for the T. S. Eliot Prize has been announced. The award celebrates new works of poetry published in Ireland and the UK. Kevin Young, Victoria Kennefick, Hannah Lowe, and Michael Symmons Roberts are among the ten nominees.