Friday High Five: Russell Brand, Hannah Kent and Richard Scarry
Our picks of the internet this week.
Hannah Kent on her path to publication
The lead article in the current Kill Your Darlings is by its deputy editor, Hannah Kent … who shot to worldwide fame last year when her debut novel, Burial Rites, was the subject of an international bidding war and pulled in advances rumoured to total well over a million dollars.
Hannah writes about her path to publication, the editing process (fascinating stuff), and the weirdness of sudden success - including the heightened expectations that come with it.
On being a woman writer in a post-sexist age
Prompted by her longlisting for the Women’s Prize for Fiction (formerly known as the Orange Prize), for her novel The Red Book, Deborah Copaken Kogan writes frankly about the way being a woman has influence her coverage by the media, and her experience working within it - as a former photographer in conflict zones, producer at NBC and as a writer.
Nearly every review refers to me as a stay-at-home mom. One such article is entitled ‘Battlefield Barbie,’ which calls me a ‘soccer-mom-in-training.’ I look nothing like Barbie. My kids don’t play soccer. The general consensus is that the book is good, but I suck.
Ryan from The Office gets seven figure book deal
Actors are the new writers. Literally. The latest to score a book deal is B.J. Novak, who plays intern-turned-boss-turned-intern Ryan on the US The Office. Novak has also been a regular writer on the show since its inception, so he clearly has some writing chops.
He’s following in the footsteps of fellow The Office writer Steve Hely and castmate (and writer) Mindy Kaling.
Novak has a two-book deal; the first will be a collection of stories to be published in 2014; his agent has compared them to Woody Allen.
New Richard Scarry to be posthumously published
Richard Scarry died in 1994, having published over 300 detailed, lovingly illustrated children’s books. And now, an unfinished manuscript will be coloured up by his son and published this spring.
Russell Brand on Thatcher
Russell Brand’s Guardian article on the death of Margaret Thatcher has been doing the rounds of the internet this week. He proves himself a surprisingly fine writer; this is as wise and sad and insightful as his posthumous piece on Amy Winehouse a few years back. (Though very different.)
The blunt, pathetic reality today is that a little old lady has died, who in the winter of her life had to water roses alone under police supervision. If you behave like there’s no such thing as society, in the end there isn’t. Her death must be sad for the handful of people she was nice to and the rich people who got richer under her stewardship. It isn’t sad for anyone else.