At the New York Times, Tressie McMillan Cottom interviews fellow author Kiese Laymon on the fear and willingness to try anything that fuels his writing process. “When I get on that page, I’m scared, but like that fear just kind of like is always met with something,” Laymon says. “And often, that fear is met with my trying to use an assemblage of languages I haven’t seen before. I just think if I can write, it’s because I’m unafraid to fail in that medium. I’ll try anything. I’ll write anything. And that doesn’t mean — that doesn’t mean you’re going to see it, but it means that I will try anything on the page.”
Emily Harnett writes about Elena Ferrante’s bad book covers and how it embraces “women’s fiction” as a genre. As she puts it, “In a literary marketplace where the very image of a woman is seen as antithetical to literature, Ferrante’s covers take an important stand.” Pair with Cora Currier’s essay on reading Italy through Ferrante’s books.
Variety reports that Universal Pictures has purchased the film rights to Melissa Marr‘s YA fantasy novel Wicked Lovely. Edward Scissorhands screenwriter Caroline Thompson is to adapt the book about a young girl pursued by the king of the fairies. As far as king-of-the-fairies movies go, I’m more interested in what’s happened to the film adaption of Susanna Clarke‘s Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell, whose film rights were purchased in 2004.
Recommended Reading: Paula Marantz Cohen on Norman Mailer’s most infamous book review.
“I am writing a book my father will never see. Not in its entirety, not out in the world.” For Longreads, Nicole Chung writes about adoption, family, writing, and finishing her upcoming memoir, All You Can Ever Know, in the wake of her father’s sudden death. Pair with: Julie Buntin‘s Year in Reading entry which feature’s Chung’s memoir.
“Avoid using the term generically and without definition, however, because it is not well known and the term may exist primarily as a public-relations device to make its supporters’ actual beliefs less clear and more acceptable to a broader audience. In the past we have called such beliefs racist, neo-Nazi or white supremacist.” The Associated Press addresses the term “alt-right.”