For Your Consideration: Jamaica Kincaid, Lady Money Makers, the Life of a PI and more
“Since brevity is the soul of wit…I will be brief.” —William Shakespeare
MONDAY, FEBRUARY 26
Okay, here’s the thing: I love a good link roundup—love it!—but the truth is that I’m busy, you’re busy, we’re all busy, and so even when I find links to great reads, I end up starring it in my inbox to return to later (spoiler alert: I don’t), or more likely, opening up a new tab that quickly gets buried, never to be seen again.
So I thought I’d try something different this week: each and every one of the stories at the links below can be read in a smooth five to ten minutes or less. Click through, read what you like, close the tab, inhale deeply, repeat. At your convenience, of course.
In other news, Novella’s fifth salon is coming up on Tuesday, March 6, and if you managed to snag a spot, we’d love to have you be our next Selected Speaker. We already know you’re concocting something brilliant, so share it with us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll see you there!
- When You Have to Kill the Perfect Book Cover (LitHub)
I follow a couple of book cover designers on Instagram, and some of the rejected covers they post are so stunning I literally can’t imagine how the final design will top it. This piece dives into the process of creating a striking book cover from start to finish—sketches included—and now I want to read The House of Impossible Beauties and for this to be a regular feature on LitHub.
- All Men, All the Time: A Former Literary Editor Remembers the World Before #MeToo (Vogue.com)
“In 1997, when I was 25, I was hired for the plum job of the literary and fiction editor of Esquire. The magazine had a magnificent literary history and for a time had been arguably the premier venue for American short fiction. It was also an indisputable cult of maleness, home to many of the writers who defined “manhood” in their eras—notably Fitzgerald, Hemingway, and Mailer.”
- Careers/Private Investigator (Atelier Doré)
Every now and then, I’ll conduct a successful Instagram investigation of some sort and briefly entertain the notion that people ought to pay me for my supreme snooping skills. After reading this, I concluded that a) no, they shouldn’t, and b) my snooping skills are a novice’s at best. Much respect to the professionals.
- The Correct Way to Be a Cannibal (The Outline)
This story has everything: 16th century German soldiers, shipwrecks, ritualistic executions, woodcuts—but don’t take my word for it, strap yourself in and embark on this wild ride into the past.
- Daily Horoscopes Are The Junk Food of Astrology (Woolly)
Come for one writer’s attempts to actually follow her daily horoscope to the letter. Stay for the fascinating history of horoscopes and why “the dailies” are scoffed at by most astrologers in the know.
- What I Have Been Doing Lately (The Paris Review)
A short story by Jamaica Kincaid from the Winter 1981 issue: “A deep hole had opened up in front of me. I looked in but the hole was so deep and so dark that I couldn’t see the bottom. I thought, What’s down there? So on purpose I fell in. I fell and I fell, over and over as if I were an old suitcase.”
- Women, Money & Power: An Historical Timeline (The Helm)
I’m fairly certain that we all left “Bodak Yellow” references in 2017, but I feel like I’m in a safe space, so I’m just gonna say it: they made money moves. (Sorry.) From the first woman to charter a U.S. bank to an Underground Railroad veteran who amassed a fortune by listening to dudes dropping knowledge at the old boys’ clubs she worked at (iconic), historian Alexis Coe maps two centuries of American women stacking paper.