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Author Lawrence Weschler on the Future of Literary Journalism

lw23.jpgThe same morning that magazine publisher Condé Nast announced it will cease monthly publication of Modern Bride, Elegant Bride, Gourmet, and Cookie, we interviewed a longtime New Yorker writer about the uncertain future of long-form nonfiction.

Today’s guest on the Morning Media Menu was journalism professor, longtime New Yorker staff writer, and author Lawrence Weschler, talking about how literary journalism will survive in this age of rapid-fire blog posts and magazine closures. Weschler also discussed his upcoming free NYC symposium about literary journalism, an upcoming New Yorker issue sponsored by a bank, and his 1994 profile of director Roman Polanski.

Here’s an excerpt: “When I was hired by the New Yorker, the great old editor William Shawn told me, ‘I don’t hire writers, I hire voices. You could always teach a voice to report, but it is much more difficult to teach a reporter to have a voice.’ It’s become more and more a touchstone of what I do, the insistence that a voice is there.”

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