Many millenials have fond childhood memories of the virtual pet community Neopets, especially YA author Jordan Ifueko. When Ifueko was 10, she was obsessed with Neopets—and Jane Austen. She brought her two passions together in the form of a popular serialized story titled “Pride, Prose, and Princes.” Ifueko spoke to Elizabeth Ballou at Vice about how fan fiction fostered her love of storytelling and allowed her to comment on the social dynamics around her. “The Internet may tend towards trash fires, but Ifueko’s experience is proof that certain online communities can allow players to express their most heartfelt creative impulses. Neopets filters out violent or sexual content and requires users younger than thirteen to get signed waivers before posting, so at the peak of its popularity in the mid-2000s, it was a soft landing place for kids and teens just starting to experiment with storytelling.”
“Only the moon can judge Indiana. It’s a state that mostly gets ignored, and occasionally ridiculed, by the rest of the country, but no matter. Anyone is welcome to come here and see a reflection of themselves in the unlikeliest places, no matter what any law says.” Adam Fleming Petty on “Writing from the Nowhere State.”
To honor Peter Matthiessen, who passed away over the weekend, The New Yorker unlocked part of one of the author’s best pieces of travel writing. The piece, titled “The Last Wilderness,” follows Matthiessen as he travels down the Amazon River. (His last novel comes out this week, as well.)
Recommended Viewing: Toni Morrison spoke with Junot Díaz at the New York Public Library last week, and the organizers were good enough to record the entire conversation and put it online. The talk begins at the 40:09 mark, so you can either fast forward or click this link right here.