Cele mai bune poveşti din 2010

Datorită unor spaţii curatorice fantastice, ca Longform, Nieman Storyboard sau Gangrey, jurnalismul narativ pare într-o formă mai bună ca niciodată. Poveştile sunt inventariate, împărtăşite, citite şi prezente peste tot – indiferent că apar pe hârtie sau sunt publicate digital.

N-am apucat să citesc decât un fragment minuscul din tot ce mi-aş fi dorit. Dintre toate poveştile, am ales 10 articole care m-au impresionat în 2010. E o listă subiectivă, desigur. Dacă vreţi să parcurgeţi şi altele, puteţi începe de aici sau de aici.

Mi-ar plăcea să văd şi listele voastre.

Letting Go, Atul Gawande, The New Yorker.
Despre dificultatea doctorilor de a decide cum să trateze pacienţii cu boli terminale.

Roger Ebert: The Essential Man, Chris Jones, Esquire.
Unul dintre cei mai buni tineri scriitori americani despre legendarul critic de film.

Zadie Smith vs. Alexis Madrigal, The New York Review of Books | The Atlantic Online.
Doi eseişti redutabili. Două texte despre Facebook. Unul contra, celălalt pro.

Couple’s wedding vows put to immediate test, Helena Oliviero, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
Ziua nunţii poate fi începutul sfârşitului.

The guiltless pleasure, Rick Bragg, Gourmet.
Elogiu maionezei. Epic!

Eleven Lives, Tom Junod, Esquire.
Povestea a 11 oameni morţi în dezastrul ecologic produs de BP.

Outdoors and Out of Reach, Studying the Brain, Matt Richtel, The New York Times.
Cinci oameni de ştiinţă explorează pustietatea, încercând să-şi deconecteze creierul de la tehnologie.

The Anosognosic’s Dilemma, Errol Morris, The New York Times.
Un eseu în cinci părţi despre lucrurile pe care nu ştim că nu le ştim.

Burger Queen, Lauren Collins, The New Yorker.
Mâncare simplă, execuţie de excepţie şi un bucătar obsesiv.

Beware of Greeks Bearing Bonds, Michael Lewis, Vanity Fair.
O cronică a colapsului financiar al Greciei.

Obsesiile lui Michael Paterniti

Michael Paterniti este unul dintre scriitorii mei preferaţi. Şi nu folosesc aiurea cuvântul. Textele lui – pe care vi le-am mai recomandat – sunt o combinaţie rară dintre documentare jurnalistică şi artă. Interviul publicat săptămâna asta de Nieman Storyboard, partea I şi II, nu face decât să confirme asta. Iată câteva pasaje care ar trebuie să ne facă să ne simţim mici.

Despre editori şi o muncă străină majorităţii celor care poartă acest titlu în România:

I’ve had like a magical relationship with a couple of magazine editors. There’s a story I did early on for Esquire. It started in second person and after the first section it went into a very typical magazine setup – I went to Dodge City to live in this motel because I thought this was ground zero for the new American racism – so it was this establishing graf, this nut graf, and I sent the opening to my editor and got this one line back like, “You’re not interesting. Take the ‘I’ out of the story.” And it just exploded, this story. I finished it very quickly. (…) A really great editor is an editor who’s editing the story right from the very beginning, the minute you mention the idea.

Despre cum a scris “The Long Flight of 111 Heavy“:

I went into this little fishing village, and no one would talk to me. There was this kind of hostility because they were tired of talking about this horrific thing. And I was driving out and it was spitting rain, and the sky was kind of that grayish purple, and all the clothes on the line – the wind had filled all the clothes. So they were just hovering. And that’s what I thought when I drove by; I thought I was seeing bodies in the air. And that was it. It was really that image that started it for me.

Despre un posibil fir roşu al textelor lui:

I know for a while there I was writing a lot of death stories. I was struggling with that. Especially when you have little kids – it just kind of hit me, my own mortality. But more than that, my need to go deeper there. I don’t think I was consciously saying, “I’ve gotta do a death story,” but I was drawn repeatedly to that, and I still am, kind of. But again that goes to that Walter Benjamin essay where he says in death the story kind of gets released. There’s something very freeing to me as a writer when you come late to the story.