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Posts Tagged ‘Spencer Morgan’

Media Wants to Click on Them



David Shipley
and Will Schwalbe seem to be the It Boys of publishing this week (not to mention the talk of the town) as they and their new book SEND get written up in USA Today, New York and now the Observer. Not bad at all for a little book on the etiquette of sending and receiving email (one that’s an entertaining refresher on common sense) though the attention is probably magnified by the authors’ respective day jobs: Shipley is the New York Times’ Op-Ed editor while Schwalbe is Hyperion‘s editor-in-chief.

So how did they write the book? Not in the way you think. “We wrote it side by side, his place and my place,” Shipley explained to the Observer’s Spencer Morgan. “Maybe because we’re both editors, there was less of a sense of ownership in terms of how you write, and maybe the speechwriting was helpful for me in that regard-because I wrote speeches for Clinton, and that’s more of a collaborative process than going off somewhere in the woods and writing. But it really was just weekends, early in the morning, late at night, just sitting side by side writing.”

And the media bubble is only beginning: SEND and its authors are slated to appear on Good Morning America, NPR, Amazon’s Fishbowl and much, much more. “We’ve arrived at a juncture in our civilization where there is a clear need for this book,” said Paul Bogaards, executive director of publicity at Knopf. “So people either need to master [e-mail], or they become its slave.”

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Katherine Taylor Falls Into Chick Lit Bait Trap

In reading debut novelist Katherine Taylor ‘s interview with the New York Observer’s Spencer Morgan, I couldn’t help but be reminded of the first time James Frey made headlines, long before any charges of fake writing and fabrication were levied his way. No, I’m talking about the interview where he railed against Dave Eggers‘s A HEARTBREAKING WORK OF STAGGERING GENIUS in particularly profane terms, and then it turned out that Frey, like so many men of his generation, is a casual f-bomb dropper without any real malice attached to it. So where do you think that first interview, the one that got Frey in so much trouble, ran? The New York Observer, of course!

So what is up with the salmon tabloid charming opinionated (at best) or incendiary (at worst) from young, impressionable writers? In Taylor ‘s case, perhaps it’s the constant dangling of the chick lit carrot what with her novel – published by FSG this May (and an early theorized candidate for the Starbucks slot occupied by Ishmael Beah) – set amidst glamorous New York surroundings and adorned with the chicklit-standard cocktail glass, cigarettes and pink lettering. “But I love it,” she said. “It works, and I love that [the cover] looks like an old film still and that it’s an old-fashioned cocktail glass and that the woman is wearing dark nail polish, not something bright.” Besides, one has to cut Taylor slack if only for her closing comment: “Indecision [by Benjamin Kunkel] was ridiculously simple, I thought. And had it been a girl who’d written it, it would have had the pinkest cover in the world. It would have been the pinkest of all-time pink covers.” Can’t argue with that…