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March 5, 2012

Shorties (Sharon Van Etten, Jonathan Safran Foer, and more)

Mother Jones profiles singer-songwriter Sharon Van Etten.

Reading the Letters of Anaïs Nin and Henry Miller and Patti Smith's memoir Just Kids, Van Etten says, made her think about writing as a time capsule. "Whatever you're writing is about, you're really connected with it and you can always go back to when that was. I remember everything, and time and place are like a center for me." She recalls writing "Warsaw" in Poland while on tour with The National and "Give Out" while opening up to her then-future boyfriend for the first time after a bad set. "Serpents" was written in the old basement in Bushwick where she first started playing electric guitar, and she penned "Kevin's" at a sublet owned by a guy named—yes—Kevin. "Every place had a different kind of energy," she says, so writing on the move contributed to the distinctive sound of the new album. "I was nervous that it ended up being a really schizophrenic-sounding record because I was so scattered, but ultimately, that ended up being one of the strong points."

CNN profiles author Jonathan Safran Foer.

NPR is streaming the new collaborative album from Radiohead guitarist Jonny Greenwood and avant-garde composer Krzysztof Penderecki.

NPR Books recommends three literary works that feature spectacular failure.

SF Signal previews science fiction, fantasy, and horror books out this month.

The New York Times examines the distractions encountered when reading on tablet.

The Korea Herald profiles South Korean band splaying at SXSW this year.

The A.V. Club previews March's new graphic novels and art comics.

The Punch Brothers visit The Current studio for an interview and live performance.

PopMatters interviews author Ellen Ullman.

NPR is streaming the new Tanlines album, Mixed Emotions (out March 20th).

The Bookseller lists the shortlist for the Sunday Times EFG Private Bank Short Story Award.

Win new novels by Hari Kunzru and Heidi Julavits and a $100 Threadless gift certificate in this week's Largehearted Boy contest.

Amazon MP3 has 100 digital albums on sale for $5.

Follow me on Twitter, Google+, Tumblr, Pinterest, and Stumbleupon for links (updated throughout the day) that don't make the daily "Shorties" columns.

also at Largehearted Boy:

previous Shorties posts (daily news and links from the worlds of music, books, and pop culture)

List of Online "Best Books of 2011" Lists
List of Online Year-End 2011 Music Lists

100 Online Sources for Free and Legal Music Downloads
Atomic Books Comics Preview (the week's best new comics & graphic novels)
daily mp3 downloads
Largehearted Word (the week's best new books)
Try It Before You Buy It (mp3s and full album streams from this week's CD releases)
weekly music & DVD release lists

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