* “Why Does the Short Story Survive?” notice this:
As the title suggests, this book has an instructive function and can be read like a manual for aspiring prosers. Each author introduces his or her selection, and the results are frequently thrilling. Imagine taking a ten-minute master class with Dave Eggers or Amy Hempel or Lydia Davis, whose erudite prologue to Jane Bowles’s “Emmy Moore’s Journal” shows how to nail an opening hook. Publisher’s Weekly has called Object Lessons “an MFA between two covers,” and there are valuable craft takeaways for those who seek them. But the book’s variousness should also remind writers that short fiction’s formal conventions are far from set in stone.
* An unusual reading of Ayn Rand’s Anthem. (HT Marginal Revolution.)
* Jacques Barzun dies. I’ve only read From Dawn To Decadence, and liked it, except for the last 100 pages.
* It was only a matter of time: Tuition by Major.
* Socialized Medicine Can Kill, with Caroline Cassin as a specific example.
* Amusing search query of the week: “how much do band guys get laid.” Probably depends on the band and the guy. Someone else found this blog by searching for “why do europeans have more class than americans?”, which is also pretty amusing. For an answer, ask Henry James.