If you missed last week’s Originals Series with Catherine Lacey, Sasha Frere-Jones, and Isaac Fitzgerald at Interstate, we have to say: you really biffed it.
Catherine Lacey sticks it to the reporters and reviewers who assume “novelists are just a blink and a name away from their narrators.” It’s a nice (not to mention important and articulate and kind of sassy) reminder of the project of fiction, and why we all continue to love it so much. Read the whole piece, “A Need to Disappear,” here, at BuzzFeed.
Etgar Keret, who lives in Tel Aviv with his family, admits that when he started writing this piece—originally published in Israel, now in the LA Times—he “found it hard to write an article on peace without feeling like an idiot, or at the very least, like someone completely cut off from reality.”
And that was before the current situation in Gaza erupted. The urgency and the predictability of the latest conflagration caused him to reconsider the very basis of how he had come to think about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
If peace is so hopelessly unachievable, maybe it’s time to give up on “peace.” Time to find a more honest way to frame things. It’s a simple, reasonable, maybe even hopeful proposal for a situation that rarely inspires such adjectives. Give it a read.
Regular attendees of the FSG Originals Series know David Rees as our indefatigable host (and sometime scene-stealer), as at ease refereeing Frank Bill and John Darnielle as he is re-enacting a Stevie Nicks video with Lindsay Hunter and Holly Miranda, provoking John Jeremiah Sullivan or sharing secrets with Amelia Gray. Regular attendees of the FSG Originals series also know that David has been absent from host seat recently—BECAUSE HE’S BEEN MAKING HIS VERY OWN TV SHOW. That’s right, Going Deep with David Rees premieres tonight at 10 PM on Nat Geo TV (AKA The National Geographic Channel), right after Brain Games.
Here’s how David precaps it:
It’s a how-to show that teaches you THE BEST WAY to do things you think you already know how to do: Open a door, climb a tree, dig a hole, etc… It’s an honest-to-goodness instructional TV show, with expert advice from scientists and obsessive tinkerers and even religious authorities… But it’s also a little bonkers. We shot it in my house and I made all the animations and a lot of the music—we’re talking about artisanal, locally sourced, grass-fed television. The big message of the show is: OUR WORLD IS A VERY INTERESTING PLACE AND WE ARE LUCKY TO BE HERE. I hope you will watch it and have fun doing so.
And be sure to tune in to David’s Twitter feed for live annotations during the broadcast.
Will it sound something like this? Who can say! But what we do know is, it’s going to be a great time.
Space is limited; you must RSVP to attend.
66 Knickerbocker Ave
Thursday, July 24th, 7 pm
Vice’s Jeva Lange recently interviewed Katherine Faw Morris, the author of Young God and all-around badass. Lange calls Young God “the most provocative literary debut of the year,” which isn’t terribly surprising—after all, “the novel’s 13-year-old protagonist, Nikki, watches her mother kill herself, and then goes home to fuck her mother’s boyfriend, all before page 11.”
This week Entertainment Weekly ran a full page on the various covers of Jeff VanderMeer’s Southern Reach Trilogy. We know: Crazy, right? At first we didn’t understand why these foreign publishers would mess with a good thing—just look at our covers—but then we saw the British editions (intriguing …), the Polish editions (whoa…), the Spanish editions (holy…), the Hungarian editions (damn…wow)!
There are a few things you can’t see here…
John Freeman, author of How to Read a Novelist and former editor of Granta, just revealed his next grand endeavor, and while it’s not an FSG Originals project, we’re still pretty darn excited about it (so long as it doesn’t distract him from that other book he has under contract . . . ). He’s starting a new literary magazine! Called Freeman’s! [Exclamation point ours, as ever.] More precisely, he’s starting a series of anthologies that come out twice a year—each a themed selection of original fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and photo essays.
John tried to explain the madness to us:
One of the things I love about working in books is its endless cycle of renewal. Just when you think there are a fixed number of points to orient by, another dozen appear, seemingly out of nowhere. And the whole landscape changes. I got to work with so many writers I admired at Granta, novelists and reporters who are among my lifelong favorites. But less than a year after quitting that post I already had fallen for a number of new writers, people I either narrowly missed when I was at Granta, or writers I was not even aware existed. The search for good writing is, I think, endless, largely because there is more to living than we can possibly know, and that boundlessness is one of the pleasures I hope to bring to Freeman’s .
The Washington Post has the full scoop. . .