Book Blog – Likely Stories, from Booklist Online » Blog Archive » Wait — I’m Defending PW?
Booklist Online

Booklist Online: More than 130,000 book reviews for librarians, book groups, and book lovers - from the trusted experts at the American Library Association

| | | | | | | | | | |
Book Blog - Likely Stories, by Keir Graff - Booklist Online

Likely Stories

A Booklist Blog
Keir Graff and editors from Booklist's adult and youth departments write candidly about books, book reviewing, and the publishing industry

« »

Wednesday, July 25, 2007 1:59 pm
Wait — I’m Defending PW?
Posted by: Keir Graff

Over at the Publishers Weekly blog, Notes from the Bookroom, Jonathan Segura notes (“McSweeney’s Interns Give Good Note“) that, just because something is handwritten, that doesn’t mean it was written especially for you. Basically, the good, sincere folks at McSweeney’s have hit upon the brilliant ploy of using a very, very old-fashioned means of mimeo to reproduce their form letters:

Until I grab the second galley, which also, it turns out, has a note tucked into it. A nearly identical note. From Angela. Written in stodgy black ink. (A standard Bic, I’m thinking.) And the penmanship’s way different and seemingly the product of a younger hand. And I suddenly felt less bad and, sadly, less special, having received not a friendly little note, but instead the product of what I imagine to be the summer intern gulag, a chain gang of unpaid college kids scratching out note after note after note.

What’s especially brilliant is that, because of the sincerity of all things McSweeney, instead seeming simply cynical, it can also be viewed as some sort of art project, a commentary on the very nature of the publicist-reviewer relationship. Or at least a cheeky prank.

I was surprised, however, at the indignation in some of the post’s comments – how dare PW have a laugh at the expense of the sincere folks at McSweeney’s!?

Does PW review books, or the submission practices of publicists?

Lighten up, already. What are blogs for, if not a peek behind the scenes?

(Thanks, Dan’l!)

Comments

comments

2 Responses to “Wait — I’m Defending PW?”
  1. Richard Nash Says:

    I’m with you man I thought it was hilarious, I told all our interns about it (our interns are so overworked they don’t even have time to do that!)

  2. Keir Says:

    Maybe they could photocopy their handwritten responses?


Leave a Reply



© 2014 Booklist Online. Powered by WordPress.
Quoted material should be attributed to:
Keir Graff, Likely Stories (Booklist Online).




HOME | | AWARDS | GREAT READS | BLOGS | NEWSLETTERS | WEBINARS | MY ALERTS | MY LISTS | MY PROFILE | HELP | SUBSCRIBE
BOOKLIST PUBLICATIONS
American Library Association