Though I was quietly rooting for Lydia Davis, one can hardly complain about Denis Johnson scoring this time. I still haven't read Tree of Smoke, but I'm a big fan of his other stuff. The National Book Foundation website has a not-terribly-informative interview with him. Most of the questions are longer than Johnson's answers. I like this; writers ought to let the work speak for itself.
And I'll confess to being slightly irritated about this one of Davis's books being nominated. Her first couple of collections were almost totally ignored, by everyone, though they were every bit as good as the newest one. It seems like once she was "discovered" by McSweeney's, then published in the NYer, suddenly she's the It Woman. Oh, well, better late than never, of course. I guess I feel a bit like a teenager whose favorite obscure band is suddenly a hit. Hey, man, I liked her before she was cool!!!
JRL wouldn't tell you, but he has a new thing in the latest Paris Review. That's a pretty fine website, actually.