Emdashes—Modern Times Between the Lines

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Before it moved to The New Yorker:
Ask the Librarians

Best of Emdashes: Hit Parade
A Web Comic: The Wavy Rule


Sneak Preview: A New Column Written By...

Filed under: Ask the Librarians

You. At least, in part. And not by me. I'll explain.

Like me, you read The New Yorker. With interest. Loyally, actively, critically. Ardently. You love to wrangle with it. Perhaps you've just picked it up for the first time. Don't you wish you could ask it a few questions? To confirm a subtle change that no one else seems to have noticed? To go behind the scenes of the DVD archive with some juicy institutional knowledge? To debunk a hoary myth once and for all? Or a other dozen things? Did you ever have a New Yorker question that could only be answered by someone who's actually there?

Well, now you can.

Starting soon, two New Yorker staffers (whose identities will remain a secret for now) will answer the best of your questions each month, right here on emdashes. Before that can happen, of course, these wise experts need some good, fun, challenging questions to answer. So what have you always wanted to know? Email me all your queries about New Yorker history, its writers, editors, cartoons, style, subjects, design—anything that's ever fascinated or confounded you—and I'll put them into the right hands. Don't bother inquiring who asked who to the Condé Nast masked ball, but almost everything else goes.

If your question is chosen and I print the (for now) mystery columnists' answer on emdashes, you're free to either use your name or initials or remain anonymous, so please indicate in your email which you prefer. Have fun, be specific, don't hold back, and can't wait to see what you ask—not to mention the answers.

Update: I've gotten some swell entries so far today. Remember, it's got to be a high-quality question—a real puzzler or a triumph of arcana, or perhaps the soul of elegant simplicity—to be posted and answered here. So keep brainstorming! Quipsters, you make my inbox shake like a bowlful of jelly, but I'm only forwarding the real stuff, so try to use your power for good. So email in those questions. Only questions emailed to me will reach the desk of people who will answer them!

Further update: I've revealed more about the columnists here.

(There was a drawing by a young lady named Brooke here, which I'll fill in later after I've transferred the image from blogspot; here are more vibrant body parts.)

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