The Sunday Long Read, 11/7/21

Hello everybody and Happy(?) Fall Back Day (one extra hour of sleep is never worth the earlier hour of darkness extending… forever?)! A couple notes before we dive into this week’s great stories:

We feel like that smiling/crying emoji 🥲 this weekend as we bid adieu (for now at least) to our fantastic fiction editor, Wadzanai Mhute, as she starts a new gig as the Books editor at Oprah Daily. At least you can’t be mad about getting dumped for Oprah. We hope you’ve enjoyed Wadza’s picks as much as we have—make sure to keep up with future recommendations on Twitter.

Attempting to fill Wadza’s shoes will be Jacqueline Nyathi. Jacqueline is a writer, book reviewer and overenthusiastic reader (213 books so far in 2021, and counting). She is currently based in Harare, Zimbabwe. She blogs about books at She can also be found on Twitter at @shonatiger, and on “Bookstagram” at shonareads_. We’re excited to have her on board, and ready for her to put her own spin on the position.

We’re also thrilled to share something really cool that contributing editor Paul Kix has been cooking up: a free workshop out now on the secrets of longform storytelling and the internal mechanisms that allow great stories to endure. Everyone from NYT best-selling authors to newbie storytellers have loved the workshop. It’s informed not only by Paul’s career—a guy who’s written for The New Yorker and GQ, and whose book was optioned by Steven Spielberg—but by what he’s learned and applied from the Pulitzers winners, best-selling authors and National Magazine Award winners whose pieces he’s edited. If you want to check out the free workshop for yourself, just go here. You’ll only have to enter your email to gain access. Again, the thing is 100-percent free.

Lastly, a hearty thank you to all of the Sunday Long Read members who continue supporting the newsletter, and especially the many of you who recently renewed your annual subscriptions. You make it possible for us to celebrate great journalism every Sunday. And if you’re not yet a member, you can join us (starting at $4) to get the newsletter a day earlier each week and help The SLR grow.

Now, click here to dive into this week’s edition of the Sunday Long Read.