- Clearing out the bookmarks. Let’s go.
- The peace symbol turns 50.
- Where is John Hughes?
- Libba Bray waxes funny on the movie biz and a possible adaptation of her Gemma Doyle trilogy.
- Liz Hand reviews Jeff Ford’s The Shadow Year for F&SF: ""Childhood is the kingdom where nobody dies," wrote the poet Edna St. Vincent Millay; "Nobody that matters, that is." Jeffrey Ford’s beautiful new novel, The Shadow Year, is an account of childhood’s kingdom under siege, a book so achingly lovely and, yes, profound, that one longs to call it a masterpiece. Only it seems a bit unfair to burden an author at mid-career with such a weight." (The other day Niall was asking somewhere in one of the reviewing conversations about who people’s favorite critics are; Liz Hand is definitely one of mine.) See also: Midori Snyder on book the same: "… contains a number of my favorite literary themes: a child’s perspective of the mysterious (and often ambiguous) world of adults; the intuitive fantasy world of children; and the echo of fairy tale rites-of-passage through dark and dangerous woods."
- Slap a pink cover on it, and it’s chick lit? Not really.
- Eric Alterman on the "death and life of the American newspaper."
- Karen Joy Fowler’s got a brand-new website, and she’s currently on tour supporting Wit’s End. Catch her if you can.
- The science behind some fairy tales.
- Markus Zusak interviewed in the Guardian:
What advice would you give to new writers?
Don’t be afraid to fail. I fail every day. I failed thousands of times writing The Book Thief, and that book now means everything to me. Of course, I have many doubts and fears about that book, too, but some of what I feel are the best ideas in it came to me when I was working away for apparently no result. Failure has been my best friend as a writer. It tests you, to see if you have what it takes to see it through.
Is there a secret to writing?
The best ideas come to you when you’re sitting down, working. That’s when most of the breakthroughs occur – simply by doing the work. If someone wanted to be a runner, you don’t tell them to think about running, you tell them to run. And the same simple idea applies to writing, I hope.
- The next Shaun Tan book we have to look forward to is Tales from Outer Suburbia, due in October. (Via Jonathan Strahan.)
- Profit sharing instead of advances? Kassia has some thoughts.
- A buffalo mozzarella crisis? Now this is serious.
- The differences between comic books and picture books.
- Finally: Don’t f with Maud. She can call you all sorts of things.