Author Topic: Is Jonathan Franzen the It Author?  (Read 1003 times)

Offline Front-Ranger

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Is Jonathan Franzen the It Author?
« on: August 31, 2010, 05:04:07 pm »
Franzen, the reknowned author who once lived in the same Brooklyn building as Heath and Michelle, is encountering more controversy as his new book Freedom begins to arrive on bookshelves. Fellow author Jane Smiley complimented him on NPR yesterday, but other authors kvetched about the attention he gets versus neglected other worthy authors. I'm reading a profile of him in Time at a library, and this passage was highlighted and underscored: "Franzen works in a rented office that he has stripped of all distractions. He uses a heavy, obsolete Dell laptop from which he has scoured any trace of hearts and solitaire, down to the level of the operating system. Because Franzen believes you can't write serious fiction on a computer that's connected to the Internet, he not only removed the Dell's wireless card but also permanently blocked its Ethernet port."
Too much to do. . .I don't have time to get old!

Offline Jeff Wrangler

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Re: Is Jonathan Franzen the It Author?
« Reply #1 on: September 01, 2010, 08:43:07 am »
You have to admire his work ethic.

I'd sure get a lot more done at work if I didn't have access to the Internet.  :laugh:
"It is required of every man that the spirit within him should walk abroad among his fellow-men, and travel far and wide."--Charles Dickens.

Offline serious crayons

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Re: Is Jonathan Franzen the It Author?
« Reply #2 on: September 04, 2010, 12:59:51 pm »
other authors kvetched about the attention he gets versus neglected other worthy authors.

I was just writing about this controversy on another thread. Authors Jodi Picoult and Jennifer Weiner have complained on Twitter and eslewhere that the NYT book reviews give Franzen, and male authors in general, more coverage than they do women authors. Then Slate writers went through and counted the reviews and found that, sure enough, men's books ARE reviewed much more often.

Picoult's and Weiner's argument involves differences between men's vs. women's books but also between literary fiction, like Franzen's, vs. popular fiction, like theirs. And they say popular fiction by men, such as Nick Hornby, gets more attention than popular fiction by women.

All I can say is, I absolutely loved The Corrections and am looking forward to Freedom.



I'd sure get a lot more done at work if I didn't have access to the Internet.  :laugh:

You can say that twice and mean it.  :-\



Offline Front-Ranger

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Re: Is Jonathan Franzen the It Author?
« Reply #3 on: September 10, 2010, 04:06:21 pm »
And I'm looking forward to talking about Freedom with you, friend! I might be able to get it at Costco at a lower price. But first, I think I'm going to be reading The Help. It's this year's pick in the Denver Reads program.
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Offline serious crayons

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Re: Is Jonathan Franzen the It Author?
« Reply #4 on: September 10, 2010, 04:21:25 pm »
And I'm looking forward to talking about Freedom with you, friend!

Me too!  :)

My stepmother has informed me that she is going to give me a Kindle for my birthday. If I can get Freedom for $10 or whatever the Kindle price is, I'll start reading it very soon!