“We need critics who set impatient standards, ask uncomfortable questions, and maintain an omnivorous appetite for the unfamiliar, the awkward, the angry, the untoward. Instead, we have a gated community, a velvet-roped garden party, a Brooklyn vs. Cambridge fantasy baseball league. We don’t need critics obsessed with the real, or with whether the novel is alive or dead. We need critics willing to look at the novels that are already out there, going about their business, quietly making the future of literature, whether “we” like it or not.” — from Jess Row’s provocative and expansive “The Novel is Not Dead” in the Boston Review, which has so far scored a Benjamin Kunkel self-defense in the comments; so, you know, bombs away.
Five Chapters is going the opposite direction of the current trend and expanding their electronic publishing module into print objects. They’ve just announced their first three titles, collections by Emma Straub and Jess Row, as well as an anthology. An interview with founder Dave Daley is up at Galley Cat, with his insight into sales #s and the logic of the shift.