August 3, 2017

Judith Jones

Editor and author Judith Jones died yesterday at 93. The New York Times writes that Jones—who pulled the manuscript for the diary of Anne Frank out of a reject pile and published Mastering the Art of French Cooking after it had been passed over by other publishers—“modestly ascribed her success to being in the right place at the right time.”

Flatiron has bought former FBI director James Comey’s book, but instead of “the tell-all memoir many readers hoped for,” Entertainment Weekly writes that the book will be about leadership. The Wall Street Journal reports that the book sold for $2.5 million at auction, a price well below initial estimates. “The skeptics worried that Mr. Comey won’t dwell on the juiciest material, such as more details on run-ins with Mr. Trump or others in the administration,” Jeffrey A. Trachtenberg writes. “An inside-the-room memoir would likely have brought a bigger payday, suggested publishing executives.”

President Trump has started his own news program on his Facebook. Hosted by his daughter-in-law Lara Trump, the program offers “updates on news favorable to her father-in-law.” Trump began her newscast with a quick shoutout to the mainstream media: “I bet you haven’t heard about all the accomplishments the president had this week because there’s so much fake news out there.”

The Freedom of the Press Foundation and Committee to Protect Journalists are launching a U.S. Press Freedom Tracker. The project will use be funded by money donated by Congressman Greg Gianforte, who gave $50,000 to CPJ after body-slamming Guardian reporter Ben Jacobs.

Poynter is keeping a running tally of all the New York Times employees who have accepted buyouts in recent months. The list includes numerous George Polk and Pulitzer Prize winners, as well as critics like Michiko Kakutani, Andy Webster, and Anita Gates.

At Literary Hub, Adam Fitzgerald talks to Sarah Schulman about conflict, abuse, and victimhood. Schulman points out that the language of abuse and victimizations is now being used to keep the powerful in their positions, rather than help the less powerful. “We have a president that tells us everyday that he is a victim, that he’s under attack,” she said. “The person with the most power sees literal descriptions of their power as an attack.”

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