The fine site 3 Quarks Daily is once again running its Arts and Literature blogging contest, to be judged this year by blogger, essayist, novelist, and teacher Laila Lalami. I think these contests are a great way to draw attention to the engaged, passionate, articulate writing to be found in blogs: contrary to the whingeing of the nattering naysayers, I think there’s far more to celebrate than to lament in the wonderfully open, curious, diverse and generous conversation about books that the internet has enabled. I was truly honored to be among the finalists in last year’s competition, judged by Robert Pinsky, for my review of Daniel Mendelsohn’s remarkable book The Lost (yes, there’s some irony there, as he seems to be the Naysayer-in-Chief). I encourage everyone to think about posts they think represent the best of arts and literature blogging (whether their own or someone else’s), to post a nomination at 3QD, and then to spend some time browsing through the other nominations, which I’m sure will be full of treasures.
- Jenny Offill, Dept. of Speculation
- “Some Pattern That I Could Not Unravel”: Rose Macaulay, The Towers of Trebizond
- “History is True”: Penelope Lively, Moon Tiger
- This Week in My Sabbatical: Out of Sync
- Comrades or Hooligans? Doris Lessing, The Good Terrorist
- “A bourgeois tragedy”: Honoré de Balzac, Eugénie Grandet
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