Also in the news: An author’s first book unboxing goes viral, and nerds explain how we ended up with a “Dune” coloring book. It’s your Daily Blunt!
If you had any doubts whether 2018 would serve up the kind of ceaselessly shocking revelations as its predecessor, yesterday was the day when Quincy Jones gifted the world with the information that Marlon Brando had sex with Richard Pryor, Marvin Gaye, and author James Baldwin. Before skeptics could get a word in edgewise, Pryor’s widow Jennifer confirmed the rumor, telling TMZ that “the comedic legend was always very open about his bisexuality with friends, and documented it extensively in diaries.” According to that report, she plans to publish those within the year.
It’s not every day you get to see an author’s reaction to holding a copy of their very first book, for the very first time. Tomi Adeyemi, the author of the upcoming Children of Blood and Bone, provided exactly this: a video (which she shared via Twitter) of herself tearfully opening the package sent by her publisher, giving viewers all kinds of vicarious feels — including Stephen King, who retweeted the video, catapulting Tomi to even higher peaks of emotion. Children of Blood and Bone will debut on March 6.
Achieving gender parity is impossible without a certain amount of self-scrutiny; science journalist Ed Yong decided to look back over his past stories and crunch the numbers, finding that “Across all 23 of them, 24 percent of the quoted sources were women. And of those stories, 35 percent featured no female voices at all.” Yong lays out his own personal method for correcting the situation, which involves tracking the sources for stories as he’s writing them to make sure adequate representation of those involved. Two years on, he recommends this as a standard for the rest of us to aspire to: “Finding diverse sources, and tracking them, takes time, but not that much time. I reckon it adds 15 minutes per piece, or an hour or so of effort over a week.” Those fifteen minutes of your time may make a terrific difference to readers, and to those in the fields you wish to cover.
David Lynch’s “Dune” was bizarre as hell, but consider how much stranger it must have seemed to viewers who fell for the film’s marketing campaign, which seemed to present the Frank Herbert adaptation as the next “Star Wars.” Nerd Nite’s video below offers a peek at these promos, which try to paint the notoriously muddled sci-fi epic as a crowd-pleasing blockbuster of the highest order — including the release of “the most violent and disturbing/hilarious coloring book ever made.”