“The disproportionally white publishing industry matters because agents and editors stand between writers and readers. Anika Noni Rose put it perfectly in Vanity Fair this month: “There are so many writers of color out there, and often what they get when they bring their books to their editors, they say, ‘We don’t relate to the character.’ Well it’s not for you to relate to! And why can’t you expand yourself so you can relate to the humanity of a character as opposed to the color of what they are?””—Diversity Is Not Enough: Race, Power, Publishing
“New York just expects so much from a girl—acts like it can’t stand even the idea of a wasted talent or opportunity. And Miss Adele had been around. Rome says: enjoy me. London: survive me. New York: gimme all you got. What a thrilling proposition! The chance to be “all that you might be.” Such a thrill—until it becomes a burden. To put a face on—to put a self on—this had once been, for Miss Adele, pure delight. And part of the pleasure had been precisely this: the buying of things. She used to love buying things! Lived for it! Now it felt like effort, now if she never bought another damn thing again she wouldn’t even—”—Recommended Reading: The Paris Review has put its Zadie Smith short story “Miss Adele Amidst the Corsets" online. "New York just expects so much from a girl—acts like it can’t stand even the idea of a wasted talent or opportunity. And Miss Adele had been around.” (via millionsmillions)
“The thing is, people are fanatical about independent bookstores. In a 2011 Slate article about why you should shop for your books on Amazon, Farhad Manjoo talked about “bookstore cultists,” or the type of people who might stop talking to you if you tell them you purchased The Flamethrowers on Amazon. Now, if anybody were so radical as to cut you out of their life because of where you shop, then yes, that’s a little excessive. But in focusing primarily on price, Manjoo ignored two simple things: you go into an indie bookstore and deal with a real person instead of clicking your mouse a few times, and people are simply loyal to certain brands and businesses. No matter what sort of discount they’re offering, it’s often difficult for online businesses to build up a devoted customer base because they feel so impersonal.”—Indie Bookstores’ Great Business Practices – Flavorwire
As many are noting, it’s nice and warm out today. There’s something about the warm that makes me want to get on the best dancing clothes (not a dress for “the club” or anything, just things I can MOVE in) and squeeze my way into 80s night at Billy’s in Grand Rapids with Sasha. We’d snake our way up to the bar and get cheap, lukewarm Miller High Lifes to grip onto while we’d ask DJ Hustlah to play “Kiss Off” by the Violent Femmes. By the time he’d play it we’d be almost spent and sweaty from whipping our hair and arms around to George Michael and Prince songs.
But we’d find each other when this song came on, and make room for ourselves on the dance floor and scream the lyrics into each other’s faces when it gets to the climax of the song.
“Here’s one example of the utter wrongness of something I tend to be automatically sure of: Everything in my own immediate experience supports my deep belief that I am the absolute center of the universe, the realest, most vivid and important person in existence. We rarely talk about this sort of natural, basic self-centeredness, because it’s so socially repulsive, but it’s pretty much the same for all of us, deep down. It is our default-setting, hard-wired into our boards at birth. Think about it: There is no experience you’ve had that you were not at the absolute center of. The world as you experience it is right there in front of you, or behind you, to the left or right of you, on your TV, or your monitor, or whatever. Other people’s thoughts and feelings have to be communicated to you somehow, but your own are so immediate, urgent, real — you get the idea. But please don’t worry that I’m getting ready to preach to you about compassion or other-directedness or the so-called “virtues.” This is not a matter of virtue — it’s a matter of my choosing to do the work of somehow altering or getting free of my natural, hard-wired default-setting, which is to be deeply and literally self-centered, and to see and interpret everything through this lens of self.”—
Today I saw one of the worst things I’ve ever seen in my entire life, and I hope it’s the worst thing I ever see. It makes me feel sick and sad at the same time, and I don’t know whether to tell (more) people about it or keep it to myself.
But I can’t stop seeing it all in my head, and I really wouldn’t mind a drink.
“While the women deprived of power choose to self-medicate—Cersei drinks herself into a stupor in the castle, Sansa starves, Shae seduces, and Margery touches diamonds—Arya’s drug of choice is grisly revenge. As she rides off into the sunset on a white horse, she looks less like a princess on a pony and more like a knight coming to her own rescue.”—A New Kind of Woman on ‘Game of Thrones’ in Season 4? : The New Yorker
If ever two were one, then surely we. If ever man were loved by wife, then thee; If ever wife was happy in a man, Compare with me ye women if you can. I prize thy love more than whole mines of gold, Or all the riches that the East doth hold. My love is such that rivers cannot quench, Nor…
“Also, today a girl was trying to see my book on the train and I was like, here I’ll hold it up. You might be a coverspy! (I said all that in my head. And with my eyes.)”—My friend and Chicago public transit rider phartmonster gets it, coverspy.
“A serious, non-circular opposition case has been made, if not against reading, then against the idea that the western canon is morally improving or good for the soul. Shakespeare, most canonical of all, became a magnet for 1980s iconoclasts, who disparaged him as an imperial stooge (post-colonial theory), a tool of national power (cultural materialism) and a product of the same social/ideological energies as such putatively non-literary texts as James I’s Counterblaste to Tobacco (new historicism). Conducted for the most part in postgraduate seminar rooms and the pages of academic texts (the collection Political Shakespeare being perhaps the best-known English example), the debate was finally settled in the public sphere, where the cultural warriors, keen to alter reputations and revise the agenda, were greeted with indifference or derision.”—Why should a college student major in English? It’s a question with hundreds of answers, but one of the most common is that reading, more so than other activities, makes you a better person. It sharpens your mind and hones your sense of morality. But what if this comforting idea — as close as you can get to a conviction held by all writers — has little to no basis in reality? (via millionsmillions)
“Second hand books are wild books, homeless books; they have come together in vast flocks of variegated feather, and have a charm which the domesticated volumes of the library lack.”—Virginia Woolf (via duttonbooks)
The beloved, hyped Founders Kentucky Breakfast Stout makes its annual arrival in New York City this week. The Imperial Stout, which includes generous amounts of coffee and chocolate, is cave-aged in bourbon barrels for a year, and weighs in at a cellaring-friendly 11.2% ABV. This year, the rollout will include a week’s worth of release events all over the city.