With a list that includes Roxane Gay, Ta-Nehisi Coates, Rainbow Rowell, and more, it seems that more and more authors are writing for comic books. Hugo award-winning sci-fi and fantasy writer N.K. Jemisin spoke to Charles Pulliam-Moore at io9 about scripting the new Green Lantern series, Far Sector, for DC Comics. “To me, a good story leaves them thinking about how societies are structured and how criminal justice actually operates,” Jemisin says, “how government, in some cases, defend themselves instead of their people. Things like that. I want people to think about these things, because, to me, that’s what makes a good story. But if they want to just do, ‘Oh my God, the new Green Lantern’s eyebrow game is always on point. It’s the best.’ That’s cool, too.”
Greg Mortenson, whose legal and ethical battles we’ve mentioned before, has agreed to repay $1,000,000 of the funds he allegedly embezzled from the Central Asia Institute.
Lord Byron is perhaps our most prominent example of an extravagant writer in a bygone age. There’s a reason his antics earned him a popular adjective. However, he’s not the only writer from long ago to live large, as made clear in this New Yorker piece by Elizabeth Kolbert — inspired by the release of two new biographies — that deals with the up-and-down life and reputation of Seneca. Sample quote: “Seneca’s fortune made possible a life style that was lavish by Roman or, for that matter, Hollywood standards.”
Happy Freedom Day: The work at the center of all the reviews, magazine covers, and even, of course, controversy, has arrived. Jonathan Franzen’s long-awaited novel Freedom hits shelves today. Our review. Also out today is Booker longlister Skippy Dies by Paul Murray. Another newly translated Roberto Bolaño is out, The Insufferable Gaucho. As is You Were Wrong by Jamestown author Matthew Sharpe. Finally, fashion fans will dig vintage Japanese prepster handbook Take Ivy.
On Friday, Tumblr rolled out its new “highlighted post” feature. The move is a new way to monetize the site’s content, but it’s not the only new initiative taken up by the site. As of last week, two writers have been hired by the Tumblr staff to document, well, Tumblr. (And speaking of all of this, you should totally check out my list of the best literary Tumblrs.)