Fulfilling Reader Expectations

May 5th, 2005 · 1 Comment
by Booksquare

We received a complaint about our content: apparently some of our subject matter is too obscure. Books and publishers and writing. . .all of this seems a little foreign to at least one reader. Because we take constructive criticism seriously, we are going to strive for more accessible subject matter. We are going to start discussing maps. Everyone likes maps.

Randy Cohen has decided to map literary New York (didn’t someone just do this in Los Angeles as well?). Not where authors of note have lived, but the places their characters spend time. He admits he needs help (see the email link in the article). We were all set to send our favorite when we discovered he’d already done it for us:

Some addresses can only be approximated. In Edith Wharton’s “House of Mirth” Lily Bart drifts toward Lawrence Selden’s apartment in the Benedick without quite meaning to. “As she reached 50th Street . . . she decided to walk across to Madison Avenue.” Midblock, she notices “the Georgian flat-house with flower boxes on its balconies. . . . A few yards ahead was the doorway they had entered together.” Even though we know only Selden’s block, we’ll map it.

File Under: Square Pegs

1 response so far ↓

  • Kevin // May 5, 2005 at 9:34 am

    Maps are indeed a wonderful thing. Once you figure out which way is north of course. No, not on the map, that’s clearly identified. I mean finding out which way do you need to turn the map to have it face north.
    Yes, everyone likes maps.