The daily lowdown on books, publishing, and the occasional author behaving badly.
Simon & Schuster will publish Cody Wilson's story of making guns from a 3-D printer, Negative Liberty: A Gun Printer's Guide to the Apocalypse. Wilson's organization Defense Distributed is famous for publishing designs for 3-D printable guns that anyone can download online. Wilson tells Forbes, "The whole point to me is to add to the hacker mythology and to have a very, very accurate and contentious portrayal of what we think about the current political situation, our attitude and political orientation, a lasting remark." He added, "It won't be a manifesto. But culturally, I hope to leave a couple of zingers ... a touchstone for the young, disaffected radical toward his own political and social development, that kind of thing."
Slate features a 1665 "bill of mortality," which lists the deaths in London over a particular week during the Great Plague. Causes of death include "Surfeit (87)," "Flux (2)," "Frighted (1)," "Sore-legge (1)," "Grief (1)" and "Griping in the Guts (1)."
Simon & Schuster has acquired a forthcoming book by the man behind the parody Twitter account @GSElevator, which claims to report gossip overheard in the elevator at Goldman Sachs. A recent tweet reads, "#1: Some chick asked me what I would do with 10 million bucks. I told her I'd wonder where the rest of my money went." The publisher bills the book, Straight to Hell: True Tales of Deviance and Excess in the World of Investment Banking, as "a humorous, insightful, and profoundly uncensored account of Wall Street, pulling back the curtain on a world that is both envied and loathed, yet never dull." The author, who is writing under the pseudonym J. T. Stone, told The New York Times by email, "My aim is to showcase and illuminate the true culture of Wall Street as I have experienced it, and write a book that is not only very funny and entertaining, but also, insightful and substantive."
At The Toast, Mallory Ortberg imagines a "Choose Your Own P.G. Wodehouse Adventure": "Your Uncle Fred is masquerading as a beloved Russian novelist in a dining car containing half of the most important members of your gentleman's club as well as your publisher, who currently has on his person a compromising letter that could end your literary career. What tie will you wear? If you will wear the striped tie, select A. If you will wear the quiet grey, select B."
Mary Miller speaks to The Rumpus about writing and her new book, The Last Days of California. She says, "A story works when there's momentum, life behind the words. Some stories have this and others don't, and it's difficult to say why this is. If all stories 'worked,' though, writing wouldn't be much of a challenge; it wouldn't be art."
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