April 16, 2008
"The songs that seem like they've always been there, ideally those are the songs you want to write. Like "Proud Mary.' "Proud Mary' doesn't seem like it was written by a man, you know? It just feels like it was part of American history. That's what you strive for. When you hear a really great song that has that quality, it doesn't sound like a bunch of chords thrown together with a bunch of words on top, it sounds like this thing that has always been there."
I recently heard John Banville talking about the noir mysteries he’s writing, and he took issue with commentators who called his noirs “literary.”
A few issues ago, n+1 had a symposium on American writing, and one of the pieces was by an editor at Doubleday who’s been there a long time, and he said, “I still remember the moment when I first heard the term ‘literary fiction.’ ” And it’s one of these things that’s been institutionalized, and it’s kind of changed the way people write. It’s created this new subset of things that are just literary. And so you have these books that are for the people, and then you have these literary books. And boy, I hope my book’s not literary!
The Chicago Tribune's Best Bet on the Web blog offers its favorite internet radio options.
Reg Developer lists ten technoculture books for the beach.
retro CRUSH lists the top twenty pop culture plants.
see also: the review of Black Postcards at Largehearted Boy.
BB: How would you describe the Magnetic Morning sound?
SF: It’s steeped in aggressive rock music. At the root of it all, if you strip away the sonic atmosphere—the reverb—it’s pretty rocking stuff. And we both have an affinity for that. We came together with a mutual appreciation of bands like Primal Scream.
The Scotsman examines the controversy surrounding the controversy surrounding the women-only Orange Prize for literature.
The prize has sparked frequent rows, but this year the complaints were more vociferous. The novelist Tim Lott went public last month, calling it "discriminatory, sexist, and perverse". The writer AS Byatt – Dame Antonia Susan Byatt – called it an unnecessary and sexist prize, and said her publisher had been forbidden to submit her novels.
It is possible the Orange prize has achieved its goal. A recent survey by the Bookseller magazine found 76 per cent of people working in publishing were female, while figures show women are the biggest book buyers, driving the growth in the market.
The Times Online lists the ten best movie hitmen.
also at Largehearted Boy: