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Slate votes to unionize; Deb Olin Unferth on her natural voice

Deb Olin Unferth

Editorial staff at Slate has voted to unionize with the Writers Guild of America–East. “This process . . . has given us a greater sense of appreciation for each other and our work,” union organizers wrote in a statement. “We feel confident that we can create a contract with input from all our colleagues that will improve standards, offer necessary protections within our volatile industry, and preserve the aspects of the workplace we love.”

James Harding, former head of BBC News, is starting his own media company. Tortoise will focus on “slow news,” which Harding defines as “news with more depth—data, investigations, analysis, expertise—to help us explain the world we’re living in.”

David Shaftel visits the Hyman Archive in London, home to the world’s largest magazine collection.

Entertainment Weekly offers a guide to the best of Ursula K. Le Guin’s novels. At the New York Times, Naomi Novik mourns Le Guin in the form of a poem.

“When I first started writing, I didn’t find my stories funny, but people kept saying they were,” Deb Olin Unferth tells The Rumpus. “It kind of worried me; these are some pretty disturbing and sad pieces. Why do people think they’re funny? Then I decided I like that mode. . . . I like being funny and sad at the same time, or funny and disturbing at the same time. It’s my natural voice.”