I asked Twitter how the great COVID-19 novel would begin. Thousands of you replied. Here are some of the funniest, scariest, most eloquent, most heartbreaking responses.

By Bill Grueskin

Sometimes, a news story strikes so deeply into our lives that nonfiction cannot do it justice. This coronavirus epidemic is one of those stories.

Yes, we owe it to ourselves to keep informed of school closings, market crashes, mask shortages, unattended deaths, and even those endless effusions from White House press conferences.

But it often feels that the more we fumble with each jigsaw piece, the harder it is to see the whole puzzle. That’s where fiction comes in.

This occurred to me one recent evening while I was, um, checking the expiration date on some tortillas. (The muses speak…

We need non-profit, community-based model to rescue existing journalism outlets

This piece first appeared on NiemanLab.

It’s been a cruel decade for local news in the U.S., particularly for newspapers.

But in a few communities, there has been a bright spot, as financial saviors have rescued newsrooms beset by cascading rounds of newsroom layoffs and coverage cutbacks.

John Henry, owner of the Boston Red Sox, bought the Globe in 2013 for about $70 million (more than a 90% discount from what The New York Times Co. paid 20 years earlier). Glen Taylor bought the Minneapolis Star Tribune for around $100 million in 2014. …


Journalist, professor, Classics major, VISTA volunteer, failed oboist. Via Colorado, Palo Alto, Rome, Standing Rock, Bologna, Miami Herald, WSJ, Columbia

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