September 9, 2014

Jenny Diski

Jenny Diski

Jenny Diski, one of the London Review of Books’ best critics, has been diagnosed with inoperable cancer. The lovely and devastating first installment of what will be a regular diary about her illness describes the “pre-ordained banality” that comes along with the diagnosis, and the difficulty of writing about a subject whose outlines are so oppressively familiar. “I can’t avoid the cancer clichés simply by rejecting them,” she realizes. “Rejection is conditioned by and reinforces the existence of the thing I want to avoid. I choose how to respond and behave, but a choice between doing this or that, being this or that, really isn’t freedom of action, it’s just picking one’s way through an already drawn flow chart. They still sit there, to be taken or left, the flashing neon markers on the road that I would like to think isn’t there for me to be travelling down.”

Sheila Heti, Heidi Julavitz, and Leanne Shapton talk about the book they’ve recently edited, Women in Clothes, which, as Julavitz explains, originated in a simple premise: “Clothing is a daily fact we can’t avoid. That being the case, how do women decide what to put on their bodies?”

Former New York City Police Commissioner Ray Kelly has a book deal. The as-yet untitled memoir will come out in Fall 2015, and will include Kelly’s “thoughts on the challenges faced by law enforcement.

The American Reader has announced that it will cease publishing online. The magazine, which began in 2012, will devote all its resources to its bimonthly print publication. This decision has something to do with the low traffic the website receives—about 75,000 unique monthly visitors, which is not enough to merit measurement by certain analytics firms. The print run is 6,000.

The executive editor of Politico has resigned, citing disagreements not about the publication’s goals but about the right strategy to achieve them.

Twitter is testing buttons that will allow users to directly buy products through the app, the New York Times reports. The buttons will be available first only on mobile versions of the app and will be incorporated more widely later. Facebook introduced a “buy” button in July. Pinterest, too, is trying to make it easier to buy through their website.

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