"Maybe the story is the difference between the writers on the panels and the writers in the audience. That story is the creation of a celebrity class. That story is the fine line between jealousy and envy: I want everything you have versus I want everything I can have. Or is the story simply vanity?" Choire Sicha of the Awl reports on (and attempts to schmooze through) the two-day New Yorker literary festival
Carbon Capture by Jonathan Franzen [New Yorker] Has climate change made it harder for people to care about conservation?
And so I came to feel miserably conflicted about climate change. I accepted its supremacy as the environmental issue of our time, but I felt bullied by its dominance. Not only did it make every grocery-store run a guilt trip; it made me feel selfish for caring more about birds in the present than about people in the future. What were the eagles and the condors killed by wind turbines compared with the impact of rising sea levels on poor nations? What were the endemic cloud-forest birds of the Andes compared with the atmospheric benefits of Andean hydroelectric projects?
"The Duke in His Domain" - a profile of Marlon Brando by Truman Capote, published in The New Yorker, November 9, 1957
This year, as the holiday season approached, we were in a celebratory mood, and I decided to create a playlist* for our holiday party composed of one song from every year of the magazine’s existence. [more inside]
Writer Dan Baum is twittering the epic saga of being hired at the New Yorker, after 17 years of trying, and then let go. It's an eye-opening and engaging tale for any writer. Baum, who wrote on a myriad of subjects, is perhaps best known for his post-Katrina New Orleans coverage. Told (annoyingly, if innovatively) in 140-character spurts, his tale takes you into the New Yorker offices ("like being in a hospital room where somebody is dying,") reveals that writers at the august mag get $70k and no benefits, and outlines the cumbersome process of story pitches to mercurial editors. In a rare inside look at the biz, he links to the pitches that worked, and those that didn't, on his website.