Critical Linking: July 25, 2012


“Wallace was a big fan of my work, Christopher is a big fan of Wallace, and when he saw his father was a big fan of me,” he urged the justice to take up the offer, Mr. Garner says. “That’s how it happened.”

I could go my whole life just making up literary connections and still not have guessed this one.


Publishing got rich on Pamela Anderson’s diet book but got famous on Faulkner.

You can crack on the publishing biz if you like, but might I suggest just a smidge of, say, history?


There are only two legitimate defenses to a claim of price-fixing:

  1. We did not fix prices.
  2. It was a legitimate joint venture.

“We are a special snowflake” is not on the list.

This is what I kept thinking to myself as the bleats over the DOJ’s anti-trust case grew louder. The question here is simple: did the publishers collude to fix prices or not? Whether you think that price-fixing had a desirable outcome for what you want publishing to be like is irrelevant.


In a Hogwarts-worthy reading room on an upper floor of the university’s Alderman Library one morning, students in Advanced Descriptive Bibliography were bent over books with tape measures and mini light sabers called Zelcos, scanning the pages for watermarks, lines and other clues that can potentially trace a given sheet back to a specific paper mold in a specific mill.

Just stop: you had me at “Hogwarts-worthy reading room” and “mini-lightsabers.”

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