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

A new local bookstore and Twilight Times Books, publisher of The Solomon Scandals, are teaming up to offer the e-book version for free, in major digital formats, for customers who buy the paperback from the store (price: $16.95). The bundling deal will be limited to the first eight buyers. re∙reads Books is south of Alexandria, […]

At a Virginia shopping center, Obama voter-registration volunteers had to set  up their tent at a somewhat out-of-the-way location on the sidewalk. The reason? Some merchants saw this civic activism as a risk to their businesses. Others across the country, including some major shopping center owners, would undoubtedly feel the same. I’ll withhold the name […]

Update #1: Ethics-challenged or not, Rep. Jim Moran of Virginia's Eighth District won reelection June 12. Scroll to the end for my advice for his possible foes in the 2014 Democratic primary. Update #2: Jim Moran has since told me there was no quid pro quo, that the real estate developer's contributions were part of […]

Video by rhidoyakash California, not the Washington, D.C., area, is where  Americans go if they want to flirt with the apocalypse, at least the seismic kind. Man-made disasters here in Northern Virginia? Well, there was 9/11 at the Pentagon several miles from me—Target Zero, of course, during the Cold War. But in Alexandria, we locals […]

Ever wonder why our politicians, business leaders, and media figures so often disappoint us, and what happens after the scandals? The Solomon Scandals is not only about the original chicanery and related crimes but also their ripples—right up to the late 21st century. It mixes suspense, tragedy, and satire in an edgy look at Washington […]

Update: Jim Moran has since told me there was no quid pro quo, that the Indiana real estate developer's contributions were part of an arrangement by which the developer contributed to many people at once, apparently with an unrelated issue in mind. I appreciated the Moran response and will let readers judge for themselves.   […]

I’ll leave the graphic Orwellian details to The Atlantic’s Jeffrey Goldberg, but the Transportation Security Administration has finally outdone itself in the crotch region—well, Americans’ crotch regions. The idea is to bully travelers into submitting to “back-scatter” scans to avoid invasive pat-downs. Modern technology lets the TSA undress you. “Security theater,”  argue Goldberg and others, […]

Virginia, where the governor honored "Confederate History Month" without at first even acknowledging the evils of slavery, has another winner on its hands. She’s Marsha Garst, Commonwealth’s attorney for Rockingham County, who let police raid the newsroom of a student newspaper and carry off hundreds of unpublished photos of alleged riot participants at James Madison […]

Update, 8:01 p.m., April 7: Gov. McDonnell has apologized for not mentioning slavery when he proclaimed CHM. – D.R. The N word and a racist zoning lawyer named Stonewall Lee show up in The Solomon Scandals. The main plot of my D.C. newspaper novel unfolds in the late 20th century, and I did not pretty […]

In Australia… an unhappy meeting of truck and car Landra Reid, wife of of Harry Reid, U.S. Senate majority leader, suffered a broken neck and back when a truck rear-ended the Honda minivan she was in. Good luck to Mrs. Reid in her recovery. The Reid incident wasn’t scary just because it happened on I-95 […]

My old friend used to handle some PR matters for a union in Northern Virginia, and people still pick his brains. Here’s a rule near the top of his list. Don’t waste too much time trying to get into the Washington Post, even on the most newsworthy stories. L Street probably will just ignore you. […]

The Solomon Scandals blog comes out of Alexandria, Virginia, just across the Potomac from D.C., and the novel itself is very much a Washington creature, as well as a Northern Virginia one. But oh how the local details can travel, so to speak. During the Watergate party in Scandals, a PR man offers boozy insights […]

Jonathan Stone as an Afro-American? Because Jewish protagonists are such old hat? So suggested a buddy of mine—not an anti-semite or self-hating Jewish, but an intelligent man of the observant, practicing variety. May I respectfully disagree? In fact, The Solomon Scandals in some respects is as much a Northern Virginia Jewish novel as a newspaper […]

Cardiac worries arise in several places in The Solomon Scandals. My father’s heart attack was one of the defining moments of his life and even mine. Scandals is fiction, not a memoir. But his attack took place in his early 40s when he was about to show us a movie, just as reporter Jon Stone’s […]

Blame The Solomon Scandals on my lack of ESP. Oh, to have read the minds of the people whose lives and deeds helped inspire the novel! Just why did the late Sen. Abraham Ribicoff end up in the 1960s with a $20,000 investment in a building that the CIA moved into? What were Ribicoff and […]