- Young people should not write novels, Fran Lebowitz tells the Paris Review. A young person’s novel, even a great one, will lack the ‘embittered sensibility’ necessary to be truly interesting. ‘I wouldn’t say that I dislike the young,’ Lebowitz assures us, but ‘unless you have an erotic interest in them, what other interest could you have?’
- Interviewing Margaret Atwood for the Boston Review, Junot Díaz is surprised to learn that she hasn’t met fellow Canadian export, Drake. ‘I have of course met people who have met Drake,’ Atwood explains patiently. ‘I understand,’ Diaz replies, ‘. . . I just think you are missing a great opportunity.’
- ‘Fear is America’s top-selling consumer product, available 24-7 as mobile app with color-coded pop-ups all shades of the paranoid rainbow,’ writes Lewis Lapham, addressing terror-alert culture in modern-day America. ‘Sometimes paranoia’s just having all the facts,’ said William Burroughs – which may have been a cynical statement in the twentieth century but in our post-factual society sounds ludicrously optimistic.
- These two short stories were both originally published in Diane William’s NOON, and both republished by Catapult. Both are written by women, and both feature women engaged in animated, antagonistic telephone conversations, only one is written by Luisa Valenzuela, and the other by Rebecca Curtis.
- Wimbledon, the oldest – and arguably most prestigious – Grand Slam tennis tournament culminates this weekend. In an introduction to String Theory: David Foster Wallace on Tennis, John Jeremiah Sullivan considers the sport’s origins and David Foster Wallace’s sustained critical attention to the game. For those who have yet to discover the ‘kinetic beauty’ of professional tennis, we recommend Wallace’s seminal essay, ‘Roger Federer as Religious Experience’.
Image © Eirik Solheim