Library of Congress
How many copies does a self-published author have to sell before their book qualifies as a bestseller?
Famously reclusive author Harper Lee has filed suit against her literary agent for allegedly tricking the To Kill a Mockingbird author into signing over copyright on the novel. The deal took place five years ago, when Lee was in an assisted-living facility after having suffered a stroke. Lee claims that the agent took advantage of her at that time, and “engineered the transfer of Lee's rights to secure himself ‘irrevocable’ interest in the income derived from To Kill A Mockingbird.”
At the New Yorker, Evan Osnos considers how The Great Gatsby has been received in China: “When Chinese readers talk about Gatsby today, some see a cautionary tale of materialism run amok; others point to the potential danger in the gap between riches and power; and still others recognize the dawning realization that that one may never grasp the dream he so desires. ‘After Gatsby was gone, no one cared,’ a Chinese blogger named Xiao Peng wrote not long ago. ‘Not his business partners or his friends or his guests. Once everything became clear, Gatsby’s life evaporated like smoke.’”
T.S. Eliot worked for years in publishing; Wallace Stevens worked in insurance; William Carlos Williams was a doctor: at NPR, David Orr considers the day jobs of poets.
Inspired by E.L. James, retired porn superstar Sasha Grey is now writing fiction. Grey’s first novel, The Juliette Society, is about “a woman’s introduction to a highly secretive sex club.” Unfortunately, says the Independent, it’s “not very good.”
Thanks to budget cuts stemming from sequestration, the Library of Congress is falling behind on cataloguing and digitizing library content.