Month: July 2004

  • Honey, I’m Home

    Coming back after a relatively long break, I realised that this is a pyjama blog: the kind of thing you slip into after work is over and the guests have gone; slightly worn at the edges, a little bit ratty, perhaps; but comfortable. And, after just a year, familiar. (Okay, two months and a bit […]

  • Hmmm…more Galsworthy than Steinbeck

    “John Steinbeck’s surviving blood heirs are suing the estate of his third wife, Elaine Steinbeck, alleging a ’30-year hidden conspiracy’ to cheat them of royalties and copyright control and detailing a bitter family feud worthy of a Steinbeck novel.”

  • I, Robbed

    Which is roughly how anyone who knows Asimov’s robot stories will expect to feel when they see the Hollywood spin on I, Robot. I have no idea why Hollywood dumbs it down and screws it up so thoroughly, but given what they’ve produced in the way of inept sci-fi movies, I’m willing to script an […]

  • Freedom is Not Free…

    … and neither, as Shiv Khera is learning, are the copyrighted words of other authors. Shiv Khera’s management books sell in the millions in India, but he has an unusual approach to “sourcing” his research. A retired civil servant, Amrit Lal, was invited by Khera to “work together” on Khera’s next book. As Sheela Reddy […]

  • Get yer gists here

    Would a gist ever be on sale? Can you get your gists at a discount? Is there a gist for every person, or is a gist a one-size-fits-all thing? Blame it on Lynne Truss. She’s the one who got me thinking about getting the gist, such as a gist is. “Yet there is an idea […]

  • "A cemetery of greatness"

    Birnbaum interviews James Wood and asks a question that every reader asks himself or herself at some stage: RB: What should any reader care whether what they are reading rises to the level of a future classic. Or care about posterity? JW: For most readers, it’s asking—which is a very hard thing to ask of […]

  • Beside the Point

    Very few entries for the To The Point (really) short story competition do what they’re meant to: ie, work as short stories. If you’re creative enough, though, you can shuffle them around and create an entirely comprehensible long short with the entries received so far. Like so: When I first saw a puffer fish I […]

  • Proofreader for the Prophet, please?

    Not that I disagreed with this otherwise well-researched story on the issue of triple talaq, but Outlook might want to get the name of the Prophet’s wife right next time round. From the article: “The Prophet’s own life and preachings were radically forward-looking and gender-just for his times, point out women. He married Fatija, a […]

  • Vijay Seshadri

    Poets & Writers has this interview with Vijay Seshadri (link via Amardeep Singh): “The fact that I came from one civilization to another, however young I was, puts me in historical circumstances. History has a density simply because in the movement from one society to another its reality is made more painfully apparent to you. […]

  • Back of the book

    Philip Hensher on his passion for indexes: “The Yale editions of James Boswell’s journals are so fully indexed they provide a breathlessly exciting story on their own: “adventure with a monstrous big whore; Lady Northumberland sends polite letter showing she does not mean to do anything; JB makes jaunt to Oxford, is very unhappy; low-spirited; […]