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Posts Tagged ‘william t. vollmann’

Witchcraft Then and Now, and Other News

July 24, 2014 | by

Brooklyn_Museum_-_Pretty_Teacher_(Linda_maestra)_-_Francisco_de_Goya_y_Lucientes

Detail from Francisco José de Goya’s Linda maestra, 1797.

  • Profiling William T. Vollmann: “Although Vollmann these days sports the punctilious mustache of a maître d’, he still resembles the baby-faced boy wonder readers first encountered in his shocking late ’80s author photo, in which he affectlessly held a pistol to his own head … Along with the Internet and e-mail, Vollmann also foregoes cell phones, credit-card use, checking accounts, and driving.”
  • On David Mitchell’s Twitter story, “The Right Sort”: “The effect of reading was not feelings of disjunction and separation but rather one of surprising connection, a sense of disappearing into the scroll and the vortex of the story.”
  • From the Guardian, July 24, 1844: “a most lamentable difference exists between the witchcraft of modern romance and the witchcraft of ancient superstition.”
  • “Is there any consistent relationship between a book’s quality and its sales? Or again between the press and critics’ response to a work and its sales? … As of a few days ago UK sales of all three volumes of Knausgaard work in hardback and paperback had barely topped 22,000 copies … In the US, which has a much larger market, that figure— total sales of all three volumes (minus e-books)—stood at about 32,000.”
  • “As Amazon gains market share, we can no longer abide its self-proclaimed conceit that unfettered growth is invariably in the consumers’ interest … Amazon ought no longer to be permitted to behave like a parasite that hollows out its host. A serious Justice Department investigation is past due.”

 

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Mad Money, and Other News

November 8, 2013 | by

vollmanspan

  • “It will be fun to give some to prostitutes.” William T. Vollmann on hypothetically winning the Nobel. 
  • BuzzFeed Books is full steam ahead.
  • In other behemoth news, Amazon reaches out to indie bookstores about carrying Nooks.
  • “Nah. Here I’m surrounded by people, but I’m also pretty anonymous. Not having to bullshit—even with a roommate who’s a friend—is a plus.” On living in the NYU library.
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