Eileen Myles, Sarah Manguso, Peter Maas, Ruth Franklin, Alison Bechdel, John Wray, Arthur Phillips, and Lydia Millet are among the winners of the 2012 Guggenheim fellowship. A full list of the Fellows is available here.
Galleys of Dan Josefson’s novel That’s Not a Feeling arrived this week with a surprising blurb—from David Foster Wallace, who died in 2008. Perhaps anticipating confusion, Josefson’s publisher, Soho Press, has included an explanatory interview with Josefson admirer Tom Bissell in the galley. Bissell explains that in 2008 he sent the manuscript to Wallace, who then dictated the blurb (“...a bold, funny, mordant, and deeply funny debut”) while playing chess. As for why it’s taken so long for the book to see print, Bissell points to the publishing industry’s recent reluctance to take risks: “It seems to me that the big houses today are much more content to poach wirters like Dan after their third or fourth book rather than nurture them from the start.” (In other Wallace news, Publisher’s Weekly has been naming the top 10 characters of Infinite Jest.)
Now that the DoJ has filed suit against Apple and five major publishers for illegally fixing the price of e-books, Amazon is poised to "decide how much an e-book will cost, and the book world is quaking over the potential consequences." Hachette Book Group, Simon & Schuster, and HarperCollins agreed to a settlement soon after the charges were filed, and Macmillan and Penguin Group USA are expected to strike a deal by the end of the week. What will happen with Apple, however, is still anybody’s guess.
On Tuesday, Open Letter Publishers announced the poetry and fiction finalists for the 2012 Best Translated Book Awards. The winners will be announced on May 4 at the PEN World Voices Festival in New York.
We’re excited to learn that translator and critic Susan Bernofsky is writing a biography of the fascinating (and frequently institutionalized) writer Robert Walser. As Bernofsky told Bookforum: “I'm writing a biography of Walser insofar as one can write a biography of a person who specialized in not being known. So it's going to be a book of gaps, but I hope to make what's missing from what is known an interesting part of the story.”
Continuing to blur the distinctions between bookselling, publishing, and criticism, Amazon has made a no-strings-attached, $25,000 donation to Los Angeles Review of Books, which launches its new website next week. (In related news, the Seattle Times debuts the final installment of its in-depth profile of Amazon, covering everything from what it’s like to work there to the company’s contentious relationship with the publishing industry.)
Continuing her relationship with Scribner, Jennifer Gilmore sold the North American rights to her new novel, The Mothers, to her editor there, Alexis Gargagliano.