In the Media: December 2018

It’s over eighteen months since I last posted an In the Media round-up. For those of you who are new to the blog, the idea’s a fairly simple one: I post links to interesting pieces by or about female writers that have appeared in the media (online) over the past few weeks. Previously this feature had a schedule. Initially it was weekly, then fortnightly and it always went up on a Sunday evening. However, my life has changed enormously in the last eighteen months: my marriage ended, I moved house, I turned 40 (and then 41), I left my regular job and went freelance, I started working for a literary festival, I went through a divorce. It has been, as the phrase goes, a lot. It has also changed how I read, what I read and what I choose not to read and, of course, this is going to impact on how I curate this feature.

Since I decided to bring In the Media back, I’ve been thinking about what I want it to be. On a practical level, it has to be condensed. As much as I would love to continue featuring all the work I come across by female writers, without a regular salary, I can’t afford the time it takes to compile something of that size. I’ve also pretty much stopped reading the news. As someone who’s been a news addict since 9/11, it’s been a big change for me but one that’s been so much easier to adhere to than I anticipated. I couldn’t continue being gaslighted on a daily basis and reading constant speculation on what might or might not happen at some undetermined date. What I’ve found is that I’m drawn to long form pieces in which there’s an exploration of something, whether that’s an aspect of someone’s life, a reflection on current society or an in-depth profile or interview. I want to be made to think and think deeply. What I’m most interested in is how we’re negotiating life now. The stories we’re telling about our lives, our society. Writing as resistance, as action, as a means of taking up space.

I think what I’m trying to say is In the Media will run when I can manage, with articles I really love, for all the reasons stated above.

Image from Time

This week’s big book news is that Margaret Atwood is writing a sequel to The Handmaid’s Tale. Called The Testaments, it’s due to be published in September 2019. In The Guardian, Stephanie Merritt argues Margaret Atwood is right to have the last word on The Handmaid’s Tale, while on Electric Literature, Carrie V. Mullins says Please, Margaret Atwood, Don’t Write a Sequel to ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’.

In other book news:

Personal essays/memoir:

Feminism:

Society:

Film, Television, Music, Art, Fashion and Sport:

The interviews/profiles:

  • Madeline Lucas profiles Brigid Hughes, the first female editor of the Paris Review, on Literary Hub
  • Lila Shapiro interviews N.K. Jemisin, the only writer to win the Hugo Award for best novel in three consecutive years, on Vulture
  • Jennifer Baker interviews Chaya Bhuvaneswar on Electric Literature

2 thoughts on “In the Media: December 2018

  1. If there has to be a sequel to Handmaid’s Tale then I’m glad it’s going to be done by Attwood. I have a strong aversion to authors who do prequels/sequels to other authors’ books – I can’t help wonder why they don’t come up with an idea of their own rather than piggy backing on another person’s inspiration

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  2. I love this round-up!! And I completely understand the shift to switching off the 24-hour news cycle – I found I had to do the same thing briefly around the time of the Supreme Court nomination in the U.S. I think the pendulum is definitely swinging back towards long-form investigative journalism (and not always in traditional formats – look at the explosion of podcast series that describe in-depth investigations of particular events or issues). Hopefully that’s the future for journalism, and journalists can once again be paid well for it!

    And I really love the idea of Women Writers Revisited, so thanks for highlighting that in the news this week!

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