Everything is Dead or Dying
Books might be dead, but sex still sells:
Borders has officially crossed over to the other side. Books-A-Million, however, will be keeping several dozen stores alive, saving the souls of at least 1,000 employees.
In an insightful post, MobyLives cites real estate decisions as the true cause of death. But like the death of any celebrity or prominent public figure, the “sexier” story is making headlines. In the post “Getting Over Borders…” Dennis Johnson says, “The tragedy is compounded by the depiction of Borders’ demise as being due essentially to the fact that people don’t want to buy print books in bookstores anymore.”
I wish you were dead:
Some of the greatest writers are haunted by their early (and arguably inferior) works. According to Elon Green, writing for The Awl, writers from Bellow to Burgess are quick to disassociate themselves from their firstborns. In the post, Green takes a look at Tobias Wolff’s first novel, Ugly Rumours, and tracks down the writer for thoughts on the book that (though obscure) just won’t go away.
Dead in the water:
John Belushi could have played Ignatius J. Reilly. Ridley Scott (or James Franco) nearly directed Blood Meridian. Jerry Lewis almost destroyed Catcher in the Rye. Flavorwire has a list of 10 book-to-film adaptations that for better or worse never came to life.
“Last words are for fools who haven’t said enough”:
Karl Marx quipped the above line from his death bed. For more punchlines from flat-liners, PopCrunch has a list of “20 Badass Famous Last Words” from the likes of John Barrymore, Dylan Thomas, Voltaire, and Bogie.
–Benjamin Samuel is the Online Editor of Electric Literature. He grew up in Connecticut and doesn’t think there’s anything wrong with that.