They Should Just Get a Teapot*

Pinky of Pinky’s Paperhaus (which is the most beautifully designed site In The World) has a response to the whole dust-up in Salon that’s insightful and on the money — aided by the fact that she knows and likes both Mark and Almond:

Here is where Mark is right: he can dislike Steve Almond’s writing all he wants and can blog his opinion.  No feud, just Mark blogging about a writer, as he blogs about a zillion other writers.

Here is where Steve is right: litbloggers are a concentrated community that can be very closed. Sometimes it seems like a terrifically smart group of 15 people all talking to each other and nodding in agreement.* And I think Steve may be right in saying that blogging keeps people from the work of their "real" writing. Anyone who says it doesn’t isn’t being honest, or doesn’t have a day job.

I’m not sure whether I agree with that very last point about blogging keeping people from their "real" writing–for me it’s been the opposite (although I admit that reading blogs can sure be a procrastination tool)–but I’ve been meaning to post about that anyway, so I’ll save it until next week.

Anyway, the whole thing still makes my stomach hurt–especially the people who came screaming forward to be mean–like watching a fight break out too close to you in a bar. (I don’t blame Mark for turning off his comments.)

(Via the fantabulous Miss Cecil.)

*I couldn’t resist, but it’s snark-free, swear.

ETA: Scalzi weighs in. I admit my first reaction yesterday was: "Salon published this? How lame."

Thursday Hangovers

The Real Competition

I kid; however, the YA books are the only ones I’ve a prayer of reading AND tend to get overlooked (plus, last year, Pete Hautman’s Godless rocked the house) so from the New York Times:

The finalists for the award in young people’s literature include a first-time novelist, Jeanne Birdsall, for "The Penderwicks" (Knopf), a story of four girls and their widowed father; and a previous finalist, Walter Dean Myers, whose new book, "Autobiography of My Dead Brother" (HarperTempest), tells of learning hard lessons while growing up in a tough neighborhood. Also on the short list are Adele Griffin’s "Where I Want to Be" (Putnam), a novel of sibling rivalry and mental illness; "Inexcusable" (Atheneum), an account of date rape told from the point of view of the accused, by Chris Lynch; and "Each Little Bird That Sings" (Harcourt), a Southern coming-of-age novel, by Deborah Wiles.

Anyone recommend or not? These seem a bit more messagey than last year’s finalists.

They’re No Five Ladies From New York

National Book Award nods are out:

: The March by E.L. Doctorow (Random House); Veronica by Mary Gaitskill (Pantheon); Trance by Christopher Sorrentino (FSG); Holy Skirts by Rene Steinke (William Morrow); Europe Central by William T. Vollmann (Viking)

Nonfiction: Out of Eden: An Odyssey of Ecological Invasion by Alan Burdick (FSG); Jean-Jacques Rousseau: Restless Genius by Leo Damrosch (Houghton Mifflin); The Year of Magical Thinking by Joan Didion (Knopf); 102 Minutes: The Untold Story of the Fight to Survive Inside the Twin Towers by Jim Dwyer and Kevin Flynn; Bury the Chains: Prophets and Rebels in the Fight to Free and Empire’s Slaves by Adam Hochschild (Houghton Mifflin)

Poetry: Where Shall I Wander by John Ashberry (Ecco); Star Dust by Frank Bidart (FSG); Habitat: New and Selected Poems, 1965-2005 by Brendan Galvin (Louisiane State University Press); Migration: New and Selected Poems by W.S. Merwin (Copper Canyon Press); The Moment’s Equation by Vern Rutsala (Ashland Poetry Press)

Young People’s Literature: The Penderwicks by Jeanne Birdsall (Knopf); Where I Want to Be by Adele Griffin (Putnam); Inexcusable by Chris Lynch (Atheneum); Autobiography of My Dead Brother by Walter Dean Myers (HarperTempest); Each Little Bird That Sings by Deborah Wiles (Harcourt).


And this week’s it’s:

Cheatty Cheatty Bang Bang. Cassidy "Beaver" Casablancas believes that his sexy stepmother Kendall is cheating on his father, so he hires Veronica to investigate the situation, but neither are prepared for what they find.

I’m sure this is going somewhere less obvious than it sounds. See you later, kiddoos.

(And the season 1 box set is on its way, yay!)


GilmoreGossipCircle Alert

So, yeah, I rewatched last week’s episode and–while there were some nice grace notes–must concur with the group’s overall eh. I must have picked the wrong day to give up cocaine. Tonight looks better though:

We’ve Got Magic To Do. Rory (Alexis Bledel) does a fabulous job organizing a big DAR bash for Emily (Kelly Bishop). However, at the party, Richard (Edward Herrmann) confronts Logan’s (Matt Czuchry) father, Mitchum Huntzberger (guest star Gregg Henry), about his opinion of Rory’s journalistic talents, while Emily has an even uglier confrontation with Logan’s mother, Shria (guest star Leann Hunley), over the romance between Rory and Logan. Meanwhile, after a small kitchen fire at the Dragonfly Inn, Lorelai (Lauren Graham) needs Richard’s help settling the insurance claim and uses the time spent with her father to needle him about the fact that he has been unable to get Rory to return to Yale. Though he’s annoyed with Lorelai, Richard has to admit that Rory is not where she should be. Melissa McCarthy, Scott Patterson, Yanic Truesdale, Liza Weil and Sean Gunn also star. Michael Zinberg directed the episode written by Daniel Palladino.