• Lizzie Johnson. Photo: Scott Strazzante 
    September 02, 2021

    Lizzie Johnson talks wildfires and infrastructure; Joumana Khatib profiles novelist Rabih Alameddine

    At The Nation, Emma Hager interviews Lizzie Johnson, one of the first American reporters to cover fire full-time, and the author of Paradise: One Town’s Struggle to Survive and American Wildfire, an examination of the 2018 Camp “megafire.” Terminology used to describe increasingly destructive fires has changed rapidly, Johnson notes: “There was the Thomas Fire in 2017, which was the biggest in state history, and it held that title for less than a year before the Mendocino Complex Fire toppled it. And then in 2020 we had the ‘gigafire,’ which was the first time we had ever used that term to

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  • Sheila Heti. Photo: Sylvia Plachy
    September 01, 2021

    Sheila Heti on her community of early readers; “Columbia Journalism Review” investigates its coverage of race over six decades

    At Literary Hub, Sheila Heti writes about the people who she trusts to read early drafts of her work and the importance of these relationships to her process: “It’s always important to show a work in progress to more than one person at a time, so that nobody’s opinion is too influential. What if you show it to only one person and they hate it? And you believe them! Or they love it? And you believe them! Better to send it to two, three or four people, so that you can situate the truth about the draft somewhere along that range.”

    Columbia Journalism Review has put together a package, “Beyond

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  • Karl Ove Knausgaard. © Nina Rangøy
    August 31, 2021

    Karl Ove Knausgaard discusses his new book with Torrey Peters; Fall 2021 books from independent presses

    For New York magazine, Torrey Peters interviews Karl Ove Knausgaard about his new book. The novel is Knausgaard’s first since his autofictional epic, My Struggle. The Morning Star is a departure from this work, Knausgaard’s version of a Stephen King novel. The author told Peters: “For me, literature is to try to reopen the things that are fixed . . . the things we have to fix for practical reasons, that are risky when they are unfixed. If it’s fixed, it’s easier — but that doesn’t only go for gender; that goes for almost everything, like worldviews and science and religion. But in real life,

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  • Marlon James. Photo: Jeffrey Skemp
    August 30, 2021

    Marlon James’s sequel to Black Leopard, Red Wolf; Lauren Christensen profiles Sally Rooney

    At the New York Times, Lauren Christensen profiles Sally Rooney, whose third novel Beautiful World, Where Are You will be published in early September. Rooney wrote the novel in part as a response to the fame her first two books brought her. “Rooney knows how many writers would kill to be in her position. But that’s her point: Everyone loses, except capitalism.” She was already at work on Beautiful World during a 2019 fellowship at the Cullman Center at the New York Public Library, where she focused on reading critical theory by Simone Weil, Jonathan Lear, Ian Watt and others, which helped her,

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  • Katie Kitamura. Photo: Martha Reta
    August 27, 2021

    Layoffs at Vice Media; online events from the Edinburgh International Book Festival

    The Edinburgh International Book Festival is offering a hybrid program this year, with over 250 online events. This weekend, Jeremy Atherton Lin will discuss his new book Gay Bar; Katie Kitamura, author of the novel Intimacies, will give a talk and Q&A on “Familiarity and Contempt”; and Claire-Louise Bennett will talk about her second book, Checkout-19, with fellow novelist Elaine Feeney.

    Vice Media has instituted another round of layoffs. According to Lindsey Ellefson at The Wrap, Vice’s chief digital officer, Cory Haik, sent a memo to staff heralding promotions and growth at the company

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  • Sigrid Nunez. Photo: Marion Ettlinger
    August 26, 2021

    Susan Choi revisits Sigrid Nunez’s 1995 debut; the return of “Ebony” magazine

    For the Paris Review Daily, Susan Choi writes about Sigrid Nunez’s 1995 debut, A Feather on the Breath of God, which is told in four parts. Nunez has described it as a work of autofiction, a term that, she told Choi, “she understands less with reference to such contemporaries as Rachel Cusk and Ben Lerner than to forebears such as Rilke and Proust.” Choi recalls her first encounter the “Chang” section of Nunez’s book: “Everything I read seemed to be a worse fit than before I’d ventured onto hyphenated ground, worse than my blithe trespasses on Austenian estates or to the Ramsays’ lighthouse,

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  • Anitra Budd. Photo: Nathan J. Kavile
    August 25, 2021

    Anitra Budd named executive director and publisher of Coffee House Press; the debate over using other people’s stories in fiction

    Anitra Budd will be the next executive director and publisher of Coffee House Press, starting in October. “Since my first day as an intern more than twenty years ago, Coffee House has changed the way I think about words, about art, and about what books can do in the world,” said Budd, who will head the press through its fiftieth anniversary year and build on programming initiatives. To celebrate the news, Coffee House Press is offering 30 percent off on all books through September 1.

    Sally Rooney is reportedly only doing one author event to promote her forthcoming book, Beautiful World, Where

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  • Matthieu Aikens. Photo: Kiana Hayeri
    August 24, 2021

    Milkweed Editions announces a new literary series devoted to “underheard language”; Harper to publish Matthieu Aikins’s debut book

    The independent publisher Milkweed Editions has announced its new literary series Multiverse, which will be devoted to “different ways of languaging” and will be curated by neurodivergent poet Chris Martin. “Multiverse primarily emerges from the practices and creativity of neurodivergent, autistic, neuroqueer, mad, nonspeaking, and disabled cultures,” Milkweed stated. “The desire of Multiverse is to serially surface multiple universes of underheard language that might intersect, resonate, and aggregate toward liberatory futures.” The first book in the series, Hannah Emerson’s The Kissing of

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  • Honorée Fanonne Jeffers. Photo: Sydney A. Foster
    August 23, 2021

    Merve Emre on Simone de Beauvoir’s previously unpublished love story; poet Honorée Fanonne Jeffers to discuss her debut novel

    The Community of Literary Magazines and Presses’s Lit Mag Adoption program offers discounted subscriptions of various publications to teachers and their students in order to help integrate lit mags into courses. Among the participating magazines and journals are A Public Space, Astra Quarterly Review, Kenyon Review, Ploughshares, and the Paris Review. If six or more students in a course registered in the adoption program subscribes to a single magazine, a publisher or editor will meet virtually with the class.

    The New York Public Library’s new permanent installation, the “Polonsky Exhibition

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  • Eugene Lim. Photo: Ning Li
    August 20, 2021

    A roundtable talk on the work of Garielle Lutz; new flash fiction by Eugene Lim

    Corinne Segal talks with the staff of Nightboat Books for Literary Hub’s Interview with an Indie Press series. Lindsey Boldt, editorial director tells Segal: “When it comes to selecting manuscripts for Nightboat, more than anything I want to be surprised. Next, I want to feel pleasure, but what surprises or pleases me may be different from what surprises or pleases my colleagues and vice versa. Knowing that we each have our specific biases, desires, and sense of personal and political stakes, we try to build in space for a variety of editorial sensibilities at multiple levels: involving everyone

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  • Kaveh Akbar. Photo: Hieu Minh Nguyen
    August 19, 2021

    Kaveh Akbar on poetry now; the crack-up of “Current Affairs” magazine

    Craig Morgan Teicher interviews poet Kaveh Akbar for the Paris Review Daily. They discuss Akbar’s second collection, Pilgrim Bell, figuring out “how to train your instincts and then get out of the way,” and self-consciousness. Of the state of poetry, Akbar says, “I feel like a lot of people operate as if poetry is teetering on the brink of extinction, and it’s all of our jobs to sort of huddle around the final flame of poetry and defend it. I think it’s doing great.”

    Nathan J. Robinson, author of Why You Should Be a Socialist, had a change of heart about the workers’ co-op the staff at his

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  • Claire-Louise Bennett. Photo: Conor Horgan
    August 18, 2021

    Reeves Wiedeman and Lila Shapiro investigate the manuscript phishing scheme; Claire-Louise Bennett’s new novel

    At Vulture, Reeves Wiedeman lays out everything he and Lila Shapiro have uncovered about the scammer who has spent years impersonating publishing industry professionals over email in order to get early copies of book manuscripts. Wiedeman and Shapiro have gathered a lot of information—the thief’s “favorite emoticon was ;)”—but the culprit’s motives remain inscrutable. “Was the pointlessness the point?” Wiedeman wonders. “The one thing that seemed to tie all these tiny acts of deception together was a sense that the thief was in it for the pleasure of the act itself. Whoever they were—a disgruntled

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