Ayelet Returns to Blogging

She’s back.

More than three years after abandoning blogging, Ayelet Waldman unveiled a retooled blog on Friday.

“Well, after years of not blogging, I find myself suddenly with something to say,” Waldman says in her first blog post. After months of campaigning for Barack Obama, Waldman’s new blog in its first two days seems to be focusing largely on that experience.

A bit of news: Waldman says she’s going to the National Women’s Leadership conference in Chicago on Oct. 10-11, where both Barack and Michelle Obama will be in attendance, along with an assortment of politcal experts. “If you don’t know what the Bush Doctrine is, say, and you want to know, it’s a great opportunity,” Waldman says.

Cody’s Books Closes; Fave of Chabon’s

Cody’s Books, a Berkeley-based bookstore that sold novels nationally and that Michael Chabon encouraged fans to buy from, closed for good Friday because of lagging sales.

“I think it’s a terrible shame,” Chabon told the San Francisco Chronicle. “It was a wonderful bookstore. It’s painful, sort of like watching someone suffering from a chronic illness painfully and slowly die. (Cody’s was) part of the fabric of Berkeley, the social fabric and commercial fabric.”

The store in recent years closed several branches until only one remained in Berkeley. But after rent nearly tripled a few months ago, the store’s owners decided they couldn’t keep it in business any longer.

Before Chabon stripped apart his Web site in 2006, he regularly linked to Cody’s site when encouraging visitors to buy his books. He also regularly had readings there for his new books, such as for The Final Solution and The Yiddish Policemen’s Union.

MichaelChabon.Com No More

Say good-bye to MichaelChabon.com.

Since February 1999, Chabon has designed and maintained his own Web site by himself. Today, though, the author announced he was shutting it down.

“I’m in the first stages of shutting down my website at least in its current form,” Chabon said in an e-mail. “My wrists hurt and I’m bored with it.”

Chabon has been suffering from Repetitive Strain Injury for several months, which “makes typing a chore and clicking an agony,” he said on his Web site.

“As I have been spending less time online I have found that I’ve lost interest in the web as a whole, and in my site in particular,” he said. “I’m tired of having to maintain www.michaelchabon.com, but I hate that it gets stale, and so quickly. Yet I don’t feel comfortable with or have any interest in getting somebody else to do it for me. So I’ve decided, not without regret, to take it down, a little at a time, starting with the posting of my monthly Details column.”

Chabon said the site was never intended for self-promotion “but simply to publish writing that would otherwise have gone out of print and to inform anyone who cared about my reading and lecture appearances.”

Some form of a schedule will probably remain, he said, either on his site or somewhere else. Many unpublished stories shall soon disappear too.

“Someday I might collect some of the longer pieces or columns in a book, but I have no plans to do so,” he said.

While by far the biggest change to Chabon’s online habits, it’s not the first time he’s disconnected himself in some way from the Web. Chabon took down a link to his personal e-mail address from an earlier version of the Web site shortly after the publication of The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay.

His wife, Ayelet Waldman, came closer to this latest move in February 2005 when she shut down her blog.

What his next plans are remain uncertain. In the meanwhile, Chabon directed visitors to this site, “where the amazing Nate Raymond maintains the freshest information at a low, low price.”

“I’m sorry. See you around.”

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