Ramdasha Bikceem's "Gunk 4"; from the Riot Grrrl Collection, edited by Lisa Darms
Publishing Perspectives profiles South Korea’s Paju Bookcity—a 24-year-old, 10,000-person town near the border of South Korea that’s inhabited almost exclusively by book-industry employees. “It is as if the book trade has been reduced to a giant board game, laid out on quiet, tree-lined streets, interspersed with wooden benches. It is also a little like walking around a book kibbutz.”
Mary Gaitskill talks with Slant about the contemporary obsession with moms, the ascent of internet porn, and her forthcoming novel, which is “about a young girl learning to ride a horse.”
At the Paris Review blog, The Riot Grrrl Collection editor Lisa Darms explains how the movement “encouraged young women to form their own bands, self-publish personal stories and revolutionary agendas in zines, and carve out safe spaces in a violent, misogynist culture.” She then showcases a few selections from her recent Feminist Press book. For more on Riot Grrrl, read the Bookforum roundtable with Darms, Johanna Fateman, Kathleen Hanna, and Sheila Heti.
London firefighters are blaming the recent uptick in calls related to people getting trapped in handcuffs on the popularity of Fifty Shades of Gray. In the past three years, firefighters have freed 79 people from handcuffs—leading one rescuer to dub the problem the "Fifty Shades effect."
Adelle Waldman rounds up her favorite sad young literary men throughout literature, and yes, the protagonist of Keith Gessen’s novel is among them.
If real blurbs aren’t available, it’s common practice for publishers in Russia to make them up. In an interview with a Russian news site, the head of the publishing house Yauza admitted, "advertising is advertising. A lot of books are printed with slogans claiming they had a certain rank on The New York Times Bestseller List, and no one checks whether it's true." And that’s just the tip of the iceberg: the story emerged after it was revealed that a popular “Swedish” novel translated into Russian was probably not written by a Swede, and that the blurbs on its cover from a “Swedish newspaper” had been made up.