Big Fiction: How Conglomeration Changed the Publishing Industry and American Literature

21,000+ Reviews has the highest-rated customer service of any bookstore in the world
Product Details
Columbia University Press
Publish Date
6.1 X 9.2 X 1.1 inches | 1.05 pounds

Earn by promoting books

Earn money by sharing your favorite books through our Affiliate program.

Become an affiliate
About the Author
Dan Sinykin is an assistant professor of English at Emory University with a courtesy appointment in quantitative theory and methods. He is the author of American Literature and the Long Downturn: Neoliberal Apocalypse (2020). His writing has appeared in the New York Times, the Washington Post, the Los Angeles Review of Books, The Rumpus, Dissent, and other publications.
Sinykin's Big Fiction is a book of major ambition and many satisfactions. Come for the comprehensive reframing of a key phase in U.S. literary history, stay for the parade of interesting people, the fascinating backstories of bestsellers, the electrically entertaining prose. The story of literary publishing in the postwar period has never been told with such verve.--Mark McGurl, author of Everything and Less: The Novel in the Age of Amazon
Big Fiction tackles a big subject with deep research, great ambition, and broad mindedness. Sinykin pulls together stories of famous authors and obscure yet central behind-the-scenes players to tell the complex and compelling history of modern publishing. This is essential reading for anyone interested in the too-often-overlooked forces that shape what is published, what is written, and what the future of books might hold.--Lincoln Michel, author of The Body Scout
A "Most Anticipated" Book of 2023-- "The Millions"
This is the book we've all been waiting for. Now more than ever, it's important to grasp how the books that come to shape our imaginations and our understanding of the world are made. Sinykin's elegant prose and careful analysis pull the curtain back, allowing us new perspectives on book making, book selling, and book promoting. It turns out that everything we thought we knew is a big fiction.--Dana A. Williams, Howard University
Ten years from now, Publishing Studies will be central to English departments, and Big Fiction will be a foundational text. Sinykin is precisely the critic I have been waiting for, with the intellectual range to bring rigor to the everyday processes by which publishing shapes how we write, read, and think.--Martin Riker, author of The Guest Lecture
In Big Fiction, Dan Sinykin tells the messy, sprawling story of American publishing in the postwar era through the voices and memories of many of its major figures--editors, agents, executives, authors--creating a rich cultural history any observer of the current literary scene will learn from. Through careful and incisive reading, he insists that books like Ragtime, Beloved, and Infinite Jest have much to tell us about the conditions under which they were published. Following through on Bakhtin's famous phrase--novels are the genre that represents "the zone of maximum content with the present"--Sinykin wants us to think of novels themselves as conglomerations, shaped by many influences, and in some cases by many hands. Big Fiction is provocative, smart, and disturbing; it deserves a big audience.--Jess Row, author of The New Earth and White Flights: Race, Fiction, and the American Imagination
Revelatory . . . Book lovers curious about how the proverbial sausage gets made will want to check this out.-- "Publishers Weekly"