The Speed Read

Now is not the time to try to publish your first novel, even if job loss has finally given you time to write. ... John Cheever liked the suburbs. ... Oklahomans (not Okies, they'll have you know) are still a little bitter about The Grapes of Wrath. ... Carol Ann Duffy, Britain's first female poet laureate, dedicates a new poem to UA Fanthorpe, whom Duffy had hoped would beat her to the honor. ... Confused? Discouraged? Unemployed? Here's what to read to understand (and pull yourself out of) the Great Depression. ... Is the Kindle's reading voice too mechanical? Judge for yourself. The Elegant Variation posts a helpful Star Trek demonstration: The Kindle plays Khan, and an iPod shuffle plays Captain Kirk.

By Rachel Hartigan Shea |  May 4, 2009; 7:00 AM ET
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