The Solomon Scandals
The D.C. newspaper novel, the media,the Washington area, tech and other surrealism: David Rothman at large

If you’re here to learn more about Quinn Bradlee’s activities, check out the LibraryCity site. A long essay there mentions his Friends of Quinn campaign for people with learning disabilities. The LibraryCity post is actually about the need for two separate national digital library systems—one public and one academic—to serve often-starkly different library users. And […]

How much coverage of Quinn Bradlee’s wedding is enough in the Washington Post, where his father was the Watergate-era editor and his mother’s picture still graces the On Faith Web page? I’ve noted that the actual wedding, as opposed to the fuss over the dueling weddings, received just three sentences originally and then just three […]

Washington is full of people telling others how to live their lives or at least wishing they could. Same for the media world. I call it the Mink Stole Ladies Syndrome, based on a party scene in The Solomon Scandals from the D.C. of several decades ago. Sally Sterling Quinn, with her judgmental dissections of […]

LBJ was about to replace J. Edgar Hoover as FBI director when word leaked to Newsweek. So what did the White House do to spite the Ben Bradlee, then at Newsweek’s Washington bureau? Reappoint Hoover, of course. Now the reverse has happened in a sense to Sally Quinn, Bradlee’s wife and doyenne of the Georgetown […]

My “Don’t fire” headline is for the benefit of out-of-towners. As a close friend of the Grahams, the owning family of the Washington Post, she in fact comes wrapped in asbestos. So why am I writing this generally pro-Quinn post (amid the “dueling weddings” controversy—over the common date of April 10, shared by her son’s […]

It should be online by 7 p.m. Eastern tonight, and, yes, it’s mostly sympathetic toward her. I’ll make my case in detail. Update, 6:45 p.m.: Here’s the promised post.

In The Solomon Scandals, I have a little fun with a hyperspecialized Yalie named Rexwood Garst, a reporter at a Washington Post-type newspaper. “Serbo-Croatian,” says this young resume jock who lives in a converted carriage house in Georgetown, “that’s the key. I know how to speak it.” It all jibes with my suggestion that the […]

A new online newspaper, the TheGeorgetown Dish, is starting up right in the neighborhood of Ben Bradlee, Sally Quinn and other VIP journalists. Beth Solomon—no relationship to the fictitious government landlord in The Solomon Scandals, thank you—is the editor and publisher. She has worked at ABC News and Voice of America among other places. Robb […]

Two kinds of parties show up in The Solomon Scandals, my D.C. media novel: the private variety (“party-parties”) and “name-in-the-paper parties” (where the givers and the guests want publicity). For both, the location is still the Georgetown section of Washington, famous over the years as home to the liberal elite. I’ve never applied for “elite” […]

The Solomon Scandals is not about the Washington Post. I invented not just a D.C. newspaper but also a presidential administration to go along with it. Fiction, as I see it, isn’t about facts—rather, about greater truths. But for those who want a look inside the household of two Post-linked Names, Ben Bradlee and Sally […]