The shunning of genre fiction isn’t exactly a new revelation, and having worked as a Bookseller for a sci-fi and graphic novels specialist, it’s been on my radar for several years. As a student, I even used to feel a little sheepish admitting to my more discerning peers that, yes, one of my favorite authors is Stephen King. Of course, literary and genre fiction both have value, and it’s also worth mentioning that as with all fiction, some of it is good, and some of it is terrible.
via MOBYLIVES » Sci-Fi authors unite against genre snobbery.
Yesterday MobyLives reported that ads are coming to the cheapest Kindle. A scary prospect to be sure–and probably the first small step in the direction of a fundamental shift– but as Jennifer Schuessler pointed out in an Artsbeat post on the New York Times website yesterday, Amazon’s move is the latest in a long tradition of selling ads in books.
via MOBYLIVES » Are Kindle ads the latest in a long tradition of ads in books?.
THE LONG LIST FOR THE 2011 INDEPENDENT BOOKSELLERS CHOICE AWARD:
Agaat by Marlene Van Niekerk (Tin House)
Aliss at the Fire by Jon Fosse (Dalkey Archive)
An Attempt at Exhausting a Place in Paris by Geroges Perec (Wakefield Press)
Asunder by Robert Lopez (Dzanc)
Black Minutes by Martin Solares (Grove/Atlantic)
Contingency Plan by David K Wheeler (TS Poetry)
Dolly City by Orly Castel-Bloom (Dalkey)
Firework by Eugene Marten (Tyrant Books)
Flyover State by Emma Straub (Flatmancrooked)
Forecast by Shya Scanlon (Flatmancrooked)
Grand Central Winter: Stories from the Street by Lee Stringer (Seven Stories Press)
Great House by Nicole Krauss (W.W. Norton)
I Just Lately Started Buying Wings by Kim Dana Kupperman (Graywolf Press)
Long, Last, Happy by Barry Hannah (Grove/Atlantic)
Lord of Misrule by Jaimy Gordon (McPherson)
Matterhorn by Karl Marlantes (Grove/Atlantic)
Museum of the Weird by Amelia Gray (FC2)
New Jim Crow by Michelle Alexander (New Press)
Nox by Anne Carson (New Directions)
Orion You Came and Took All My Marbles by Kira Henehan (Milkweed Editions)
Report by Jessica Francis Kane (Graywolf)
The Autobiography of Jenny X by Lisa Dierbeck (O/R Books)
The Black History of the White House by Clarence Lusane (City Lights)
The Debba by Avner Mandelman (Other Press)
The French Revolution by Matt Stewart (Soft Skull Press)
The Instructions by Adam Levin (McSweeney’s)
The Jokers by Albert Cossery (NYRB)
The Lonely Polygamist by Brady Udall (W.W. Norton)
The Museum of Eterna’s Novel by Macedonio Fernandez (Open Letter)
The Orange Eats Creeps by Grace Krilanovich (Two Dollar Radio)
The Singer’s Gun by Emily St. John Mandel (Unbridled)
The Windup Girl by Paolo Bacigalupi (Night Shade Books)
Under the Poppy by Kathe Koja (Small Beer Press)
Visitation by Jenny Erpenbeck (New Directions)
Who Was Changed and Who Was Dead by Barbara Comyns (Dorothy)
Wingshooters by Nina Revoyr (Akashic)
MOBYLIVES » Indie Booksellers’ Choice Award gets new co-sponsor, announces longlist.
Dirt-cheap [e-] books benefit the very rich – and the very dead. They might also help new authors to find a foothold and win an audience – although, on that logic, newcomers should think about showcasing their work for nothing. Many do. But the almost-free digital novel hammers another nail into the coffin of a long-term literary career. Who cares? Readers should, if they cherish full-time authors who craft not safe genre pieces but distinctive book after distinctive book that build into a unique body of work.
Are books getting too cheap? via MOBYLIVES
A New Scientist article
suggests that the human ability to read actually cannibalizes parts of the brain used for other visual skills, such as tracking animals… and recognizing faces. Neurologists have long been faced with the “reading paradox” of how our brain contains such a specific area for reading while reading itself has only existed for 5000 years–far too short a time for the reading area of the brain to be an adaptive trait.
[Our] visual plasticity may have allowed for humans to “recycle” visual portions of the brain for reading, but not, his new study suggests, without a cost…
That cost is our ability to recognize faces.
Wait, who said that?