Thursday, June 17, 2010

20 Under 40?

I love looking at lists of promising writers and then watching the comments. Which is why when Omnivoracious pointed out some responses to the New Yorker's list of the top twenty writers under the age of 40, I had to check them out.

You start with the New Yorker’s List, follow that with an alternate list of 20 from The Millions, and then check out some commentary. Or, with this pre-response to the list.

Now, this is generally a SFF themed blog and most of what we read around these parts is in-genre. As such, I haven't read many of the writers on the New Yorker's list (books from Adichie, Freudenberger, and Foer - and probably some individual stories from a couple of the others like Alarcon), and I've scarcely heard of the folks on the list from The Millions.

But I love lists.

And it is worth noting that when The New Yorker ran a Top 20 Under 40 list in 1999, the list contained a number of names that are instantly recognizable today: Sherman Alexie, David Foster Wallace, Michael Chabon, Jhumpa Lahiri, Jeffrey Eugenides, Junot Diaz, Jonathan Franzen, Rick Moody, George Saunders.

Oh, yeah, there's four Pulitzer Prize winners on the 1999 list, not to mention other bits of awesomeness. If this new list is nearly as prescient, you'll be hearing much more the newly anointed.

Did I mention that I love lists?

1 comment:

Carl V. Anderson said...

Not surprisingly, I haven't heard of 99.9% of those on the list. I have read one book by Jonathan Saffron Foer lately that I really enjoyed, leading me to believe that perhaps others on these lists would peak my interest.

But largely I am a genre reader and/or an 'authors I am familiar with' readers, so it is understood that most of these names would result in a "who?" from me.

I love lists too, though, so thanks for pointing out the links.