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Of course Andrew Yang’s favorite New York book is The Catcher in the Rye.

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May 12, 2021, 4:49pm

Last week, Gothamist invited readers to choose their favorite New York book from a list curated by librarians at the New York Public Library. The books on the list were The Catcher in the RyeJust KidsThe Amazing Adventures of Cavalier and KlayThe House of MirthBonfire of the VanitiesJazzMotherless BrooklynA Little LifeAnother BrooklynThe Price of SaltThe Mambo Kings Play Songs of Love, Open City, and Native Speaker.

Since the upcoming New York mayoral primary will allow voters to used ranked-choice voting for the first time, Gothamist structured their ballot the same way. In the ends, 3423 readers elected The Catcher in the Rye as their city’s fictional representative.

This is fairly boring but also entirely predictable, as A) a lot of people really like that book, and B) a lot of people stop reading for pleasure entirely after high school.

Far more interesting to me were the results when Gothamist put same question to mayoral candidates—without a list to choose from. It brings me no joy—but again, no surprise—to report that current front-runner Andrew Yang (who loves New Yorky shit like bodegas and escaping to his country house) still chose The Catcher in the Rye. Out of all the New York books in the world.

The other candidates, at least, was considerably more imaginative:

 

To be fair to Yang, having a really boring answer to a softball literary question is not even close to the worst thing he did this week.

Here are the winners of Publishing Triangle’s 33rd annual Triangle Awards.

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May 12, 2021, 1:24pm

The Publishing Triangle, the association of LGBTQ people in publishing, has named the winners of the 33rd annual Triangle Awards, honoring the best LGBTQ fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and trans literature published in 2020. In total, Publishing Triangle awarded $12000 to this year’s winners.

Without further ado, here’s the list.

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Ferro-Grumley Award for LGBTQ Fiction: Juliana Delgado Lopera, Fiebre Tropical (Feminist Press)

Edmund White Award for Debut Fiction: Julia Serano, 99 Erics (Switch Hitter Press)

Thom Gunn Award for Gay Poetry: Mark Bibbins, 13th Balloon (Copper Canyon Press)

Audre Lorde Award for Lesbian Poetry: Natalie Diaz, Postcolonial Love Poem (Graywolf Press)

Publishing Triangle Award for Trans and Gender-Variant Literature: Hil Malatino, Trans Care (University of Minnesota Press)

Judy Grahn Award for Lesbian Nonfiction: Jenn Shapland, My Autobiography of Carson McCullers (Tin House)

Randy Shilts Award for Gay Nonfiction: Eric Cervini, The Deviant’s War (FSG)

Bill Whitehead Award for Lifetime Achievement: Cheryl Clarke

Betty Berzon Emerging Writer Award: Robert Fieseler

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More information, as well as lists of finalists for all the awards, can be found on Publishing Triangle’s website.

This legislator is trying to limit the “enormous economic and social power” of . . . fact-checkers.

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May 12, 2021, 1:12pm

As initially reported by the Detroit News, Michigan state representative Matt Maddock (R) introduced a bill on Tuesday that would require fact checkers to register with the state, insure themselves with million-dollar bonds, and be subject to daily thousand-dollar fines. Michigan state senator Jeremy Moss (D) has called the bill “an affront to the First Amendment.”

The Fact Checker Registration Act would require fact checkers to register and file proof of a $1 million fidelity bond with the Secretary of State’s office; persons “affected” by incorrect fact checking could bring a civil action in any county district court to claim the bond. Individual fact checkers found in violation of registry requirements could be fined $1,000 per day. “Many believe this enormous economic and social power is being abused,” Maddock wrote on Facebook. “My legislation will put Fact Checkers on notice: Don’t be wrong, don’t be sloppy, and you better be right.” Three things!

Other things Maddock has done lately: try to enter the Michigan Capitol mid-December to cast his own electoral vote for Donald Trump (he was turned away by security); take part in a suit that would require legislators in battleground states to sign off on their states’ election results (a district court judge called this suit “somewhere between a willful misreading of the Constitution and fantasy”); call for all Dominion voting machines to be discontinued; attend the “Stop the Steal” riot with his wife, Michigan GOP co-chair Meshawn Maddock; claim on Twitter that COVID-19 is “less lethal than the flu.” Someone get this man a fact checker!

The Stephen King cinematic universe will devour us all.

Dan Sheehan

May 12, 2021, 12:40pm

I’m not a hater, I swear. I loved The Shining, and The Outsider, and It, and Carrie, and Pet Semetary, and Thinner, and Apt Pupil—all of them ludicrous and tremendously entertaining adaptations. King’s febrile imagination lends itself well to lurid screen reimaginings and long may Hollywood’s power players keep him on speed-dial.

Having said all that, as I watched the first trailer for Lisey’s Story—the Julianne Moore-starring, J. J. Abrams-produced (shudder) Apple TV+ miniseries adaptation of King’s 2006 novel of the same name—all I could think was: there are way too many of these fucking things now. It’s getting out of hand. Dangerously out of hand.

But was it ever thus? Let’s consult the numbers.

Over the course of the 1980s, there were 14 feature films and 0 TV shows/TV movies released based on Stephen King novels and short stories. In the 1990s, the numbers were 13 and 9. In the 2000s, 9 and 6. And in the 2010s, 12 and 8. It would appear that King’s stats in this area have always been insane. As my colleague Emily Temple illustrated back in 2017, no other living author comes close to his strike rate.

Yet I couldn’t shake the bone-chill, the nagging sense of foreboding. Like a young Danny Torrance, I had a vision of something terrible lurking out there in the darkness….growing stronger…losing control…so I checked the wikipedia page “List of adaptations of works by Stephen King” to see how many projects were in the pipeline.

The answer? 26. We’re only a year and a half into the roaring 20s and there are already 26 different film and TV projects based on Stephen King works in various stages of production. 28 if you count The Outsider and The Stand, both of which aired last year. Even if the remaining 26 are released over a nine-year period (and, let’s face it, it’ll be more like a 3-5 year rollout), that’s still an average of [opens calculator app] 2.9 big-budget Stephen King adaptations per year.

That is too many, friends. It’s just too many. No one man should have all that power.

For what it’s worth, Lisey’s Story looks decent. It’s about a widow whose dead novelist husband was able to transport himself to another world, and the dangerous stalker obsessed with his unpublished work. I haven’t seen Clive Owen in a while, and this series reunites him with Moore (his co-star in the magnificent Children of Men), so that’s nice for Clive and for Julianne and for me.

Still, though, it’d be nice if we didn’t rush to Marvel-ize the King of Horror Fiction. Perhaps it’s already too late…

Trevor Shikaze is the winner of n+1’s inaugural Anthony Veasna So Prize.

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May 12, 2021, 12:21pm

Trevor Shikaze has been named the first winner of n+1’s newly established Anthony Veasna So Prize, an annual $5,000 award named in honor of n+1 contributor and brilliant short story writer Anthony Veasna So, who died in 2020. The award is granted to an n+1-published fiction writer who shows a sustained commitment to producing literature that approaches the problems of contemporary life and politics with lucidity, intelligence, and humor.

Trevor Shikaze, who “taught himself to write while working as a sales clerk at a family-run bookstore in Alberta,” has published two stories with n+1: “Beast Leave” and “Parasite Air.” Shikaze’s work has also been seen in The Baffler and Joyland, among other publications. Said Shikaze on Twitter, on winning: “Tenderized from pinching self, so far still dreaming.”

An award ceremony to celebrate Shikaze—and Christina Nichol, winner of the 2021 n+1 Writer’s Fellowship—will be held online on May 26 at 7:30 p.m. ET.

So’s debut story collection, Afterparties, will be published by Ecco in August 2021.

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