Deborah Eisenberg’s most recent story, “Recalculating.” I described it to a friend the other day as “a story with a solid beginning—dialogue, stark realism, thoughtful aging characters—that in the middle tears itself open to reveal a giant, forgiving white hole in the universe.” Mercifully, it is available for free online from New York Review of Books, here.
Keith Gessen’s Vanity Fair profile on Chad Harbach (author of the wonderful The Art of Fielding—read immediately if you haven’t). I worked with both of them at n+1 and it was fascinating to read about them as they were starting out as writers. The fact that the two of them have been friends for so long elicits sentimentality—something along the lines of a literary brotherhood. Stick by your friends! Fun fact that Harbach was also a student of Eisenberg when she taught at UVA. Keith’s piece is also an interesting, transparent look into the publishing industry and how a “big book” is made from start to finish. It’s not online but can be purchased as an eBook from Vanity Fair for a very small amount of money. If you are like me and you don’t have a Kindle or a Nook, you’re out of luck. Maybe someone can lend you a back issue.