Indexing: Gary Lutz, cable television books, Chad Harbach, and more

Our editors weekly roundup of what they’re consuming.

Jason Diamond

I guess I’ve really missed out by not reading The Art of Fielding.  Aside from the dozen people who’ve suggested I pick it up, the Keith Gessen article in Vanity Fair was really the breaking point.  I’ve obviously fucked up on several levels, and it is time to rectify this. 

Rob Tannenbaum and Craig Marks future bestseller, I Want My MTV (Dutton), has occupied a good portion of my week.  It’s the second oral history of a cable television network I’ve read this year, and frankly, between this and the ESPN book, I don’t see how it could get any more interesting.  CNN?  USA?  I could see some comprehensive history on the beginnings of HBO being worth a read, but beyond that, 2011 will be known as the year of the best cable television books.

Tobias Carroll
This will be another relatively quiet week, as three of the books I consumed over the past seven days — Gary Lutz’s Divorcer, Vincent Standley’s A Mortal Affect, and Brian Evenson’s Contagion and Other Stories — are titles I’ll be discussing here in some form in the coming weeks.

I did greatly enjoy Melville House’s edition of Guy de Maupassant’s The Horla, which collects three different versions of the same story, tracing its evolution. It’s both entertaining and — for students of craft — particularly interesting, and the story, especially in its final version, is especially unsettling.

Took in the US/Ecuador friendly at Red Bull Arena earlier this week. With soccer in mind, I read a large chunk of Soccer Men, Simon Kuper’s collection of sports reporting. And continuing with that theme, I’m looking forward to sitting down with Mr. Diamond’s essay “Who Will Protect the Hockey Goons” later this weekend.