To do great writing, read great writing. Here’s the great writing I’ve been reading this week:
I can tell you one piece of great writing I wasn’t reading this week – the book that won the Pulitzer Prize for fiction for 2012. That’s because – as you’ve probably heard by now – there was no winner.
The three Pulitzer judges in the fiction category – including a well-known author and a English professor at Georgetown who reviews books on NPR – gave their three picks to the Pulitzer Prize jurors to read and vote on. Only they couldn’t decide. Or they hated everything. Or it was a three-way tie. In truth, we’ll never know because the committee doesn’t comment on its selection process.
The reactions have been coming all week and they range from upset to furious to funny. Here are some highlights:
- Book lovers react bitterly to no fiction Pulitzer (Reuters) – Initial reaction.
- Pulitzer’s no decision on fiction prize exposes flaw in process (Washington Post) – Fiction judge Maureen Corrigan weighs in on what’s wrong with the current Pulitzer selection set up.
- Book Buzz: Pulitzer winners and those who came close (SecondAct.com) – They might not have won, but they’re still worth reading, argues reviewer David Ferrell about these also rans.
- The Leaked Pulitzer Fiction Memos (New Yorker) – If you can’t do anything else about the situation you might as well laugh at it. Which humor columnist Avi Steinberg does, and very well.
Other good reads for the past week:
The bravest woman in Seattle (The Stranger) – Eli Sanders’ Pulitzer-winning feature story about a woman who testified against the man who brutalized her and killed her partner, published in Seattle’s alt-weekly. Proving once again that you don’t have to write for The New Yorker, New York Times, Washington Post or other major daily or national magazine to do great work.
101 Spectacular Nonfiction Stories of 2011 (Byliner) - Sanders’ piece is included in Conor Friedersdorf’s annual collection of the best of the years’s nonfiction writing. Even the headlines and descriptions are mesmerizing. Best consumed on an iPad or Kindle, so you can lounge while you read.
Getting the News – Danah Boyd (News.me) – The latest in a continuing series of profiles of news industry and other personalities and how they find, manage and read what they read. Because if you’re in the business of writing, you need to keep up with the business of reading.
From designers to all clients (Art+Design) – What every web designer wants to tell their (freelance writing) clients, but doesn’t…