We start off with an exploration of pain and parentheses in narrative. Those punctuation marks really do (or really should) serve a purpose.
It’s the 100th anniversary of James Joyce’s The Dubliners. If there is any question about why Joyce wrote this work that has survived a lot of literary trends, they are answered with this: “My intention was to write a chapter of the moral history of my country and I chose Dublin for the scene because that city seemed to me to be the centre of the paralysis. I have tried to present it to the indifferent public under four of its aspects: childhood, adolescence, maturity and public life.” In Slate, Mark O’Connell writes about the book and Dublin as he sees them now.
The University of Mississippi is publishing a book this summer, Delta Dogs, about the abandoned dogs of the south, by Maude Schuyler Clay. Here are some photos from the forthcoming work, of noble dogs, alone.
We use the Chicago Manual of Style for copy editing. Each month, CMOS features a Q&A, which we look forward to. Here’s a sample, perfect in its understated reply:
Q. When somebody (especially a superior who wants to get work done through you) means, “You must/should/have to do this,” is it correct for her to say, “You need to do this”? You need to answer that; otherwise I am not likely to get sleep. Thanks!
A. It’s certainly correct grammatically. CMOS is silent on whether it’s gracious or effective.
The premature death of the novel, and of Twitter, were declared (again and again and again) last week. The L.A. Times’ David Ulin disagrees. (And really, if the death of the novel is proclaimed on Twitter, how can Twitter be dead?)