Daily News from Poets & Writers

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Daily News in the Writing Community from Poets & Writers

New J. R. R. Tolkien Book to be Published Next Year, #TrumpBookReport, and More
Fri, 21 Oct 2016 16:02:55 +0000 -

French poet Paul Verlaine’s gun goes to auction; Nine Dots Prize offers $100,000 for a yet-to-be-written book; Ben Fountain on the film adaptation of his award-winning novel; and other news.

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Every day Poets & Writers Magazine scans the headlines—from publishing reports to academic announcements to literary dispatches—for all the news that creative writers need to know. Here are today’s stories:

HarperCollins will publish a new book by late Lord of the Rings author J. R. R. Tolkien in May 2017Beren and Lúthien, the “story of the love between a mortal man and an immortal elf,” was originally written in 1917. (Telegraph)

At the end of November, Christie’s will auction off the gun with which French poet Paul Verlaine shot poet Arthur Rimbaud in 1873. The revolver is expected to fetch up to 60,000 euros. (Guardian)

Entries open today for one of the world’s newest, and richest, book prizes—for a book that has yet to be written. The $100,000 Nine Dots Prize is open to any writer over the age of eighteen writing in English. Instead of submitting a book, applicants submit a three-thousand-word essay answering the question: “Are digital technologies making politics impossible?” The essay will form the basis for a book, which will be published by Cambridge University Press. (Newsweek)

Fiction writer Ben Fountain talks with Texas Monthly about the new film adaptation of his award-winning novel, Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk. The film, directed by Ang Lee and starring Vin Diesel, Steve Martin, and Kristen Stewart, comes to theaters November 11.

Happy eighty-seventh birthday to Ursula K. Le Guin! On Tuesday, Saga Press released a collection of the author’s novellas, The Found and the Lost, alongside a story collection, The Unreal and the Real. Le Guin recently spoke with Publishers Weekly about her latest publications.

“A work with characters who grapple with the effects of age doesn’t need to be confined to the morbid or elegiac.” Fiction writer Tobias Carroll considers various treatments of the elderly and the aging in a range of novels. (Literary Hub)

At Signature Reads, fiction writer Janice Y. K. Lee discusses her second novel, The Expatriates, which recounts the experiences of three expatriate women living in Hong Kong. Lee’s own experience of growing up in Hong Kong with Korean expatriate parents, and later attending school in America before moving back to Hong Kong, inspired the world of the novel.

“Those poor heights. They were wuthering. Wuthering so bad. Bigly wuthering. I’ll make them great again.” Following St. Louis mayoral candidate Antonio French’s Tweet during Wednesday night’s presidential debate in which he compared Donald Trump’s foreign policy answers to an unprepared teenager giving a book report, the #TrumpBookReport hashtag has gone viral. (GalleyCat)

Jonathan Lethem on Kafka, Saving Book Stacks in University Libraries, and More
Thu, 20 Oct 2016 15:37:51 +0000 -

Kurt Vonnegut once called Bob Dylan the “worst poet alive”; comedy writers teach Google’s A.I. how to tell jokes; the original vampire novel; and other news.

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This is all the info relevant to page 1 of the article.

Every day Poets & Writers Magazine scans the headlines—from publishing reports to academic announcements to literary dispatches—for all the news that creative writers need to know. Here are today’s stories:

Written years before Bram Stoker’s Dracula, in 1871, Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu’s novella Carmilla could be considered modern Europe’s original vampire novel. (Atlas Obscura)

At the Chronicle of Higher Education, Ann E. Michael makes a case for why physical books should remain in university libraries despite changing technologies.

Funny or frightening? In an effort to make its virtual assistants wittier and more humanlike, Google is recruiting comedy writers to teach its artificial intelligence how to tell jokes. (Smithsonian)

“That’s true of a number of Kafka’s aphorisms—they seem somehow emblematic of consciousness itself, and they just carve themselves into the human source code.” Fiction writer Jonathan Lethem discusses the influence of Franz Kafka’s The Castle on his work. (Atlantic)

Following Bob Dylan’s Nobel Prize win last week, Simon & Schuster has pushed up the release date for a book of Dylan’s lyrics, Lyrics, 1961-2012, from November 8 to November 1. (GalleyCat)

If Kurt Vonnegut were alive, he would probably not purchase that Dylan book. In a recently unearthed interview from 1991, Vonnegut called Bob Dylan the “worst poet alive.” (Page Six)

Paramount has acquired film rights to award-winning author Jeff VanderMeer’s next novel, Borne. Scott Rudin and Eli Bush, who are producing the adaptation of VanderMeer’s Annihilation, will also produce Borne. (Variety)

Claudia Rankine to Fund Racial Imaginary Institute, Sleep at Dracula’s Castle, and More
Wed, 19 Oct 2016 15:45:07 +0000 -

Janitor-turned-writer Thom Jones has died; five writers on their new books; best-selling authors release short digital “singles” in advance of their novels; and other news.

Page 1
This is all the info relevant to page 1 of the article.

Every day Poets & Writers Magazine scans the headlines—from publishing reports to academic announcements to literary dispatches—for all the news that creative writers need to know. Here are today’s stories:

If you don’t have plans yet for Halloween, perhaps you’d like to spend the night in Dracula’s castle. Airbnb is offering a night’s stay at Bran Castle in Romania, the basis for Dracula’s residence in Bram Stoker’s classic vampire novel. Not only will you meet a relative of the author—Dacre Stoker, Bram’s great nephew—you’ll also have the option to sleep in a plush coffin! (Telegraph)

Poet and MacArthur “genius grant” recipient Claudia Rankine discusses her plans to use her $625,000 MacArthur stipend to found the Racial Imaginary Institute in New York City, a “space which allows us to show art, to curate dialogues, have readings, and talk about the ways in which the structure of white supremacy in American society influences our culture.” 

“He is someone who believes that each poet has her own music, and that rhythm imparts a heavy significance, both on the page and off.” Amanda Petrusich writes about the poetry of Peter Gizzi, whose latest collection, Archeophonics, is a finalist for the National Book Award. (New Yorker)

At Salon, novelist Teddy Wayne asks five fiction writers with new books—Brit Bennett, Jason Diamond, James Lasdun, Daniel Menaker, and Mark Slouka—about their influences, strengths, and what career they would choose if writing was not an option.

Thom Jones, an author best known for his short story collection The Pugilist at Rest, has died at age seventy-one. Jones worked as a high school janitor when he submitted his first story to the New Yorker, and quickly rose to acclaim. (New York Times)

Fiction writer Emily Barton talks about her latest novel, The Book of Esther; writing a young woman protagonist; and examining gender, sexuality, and genre fluidity in her work. (Rumpus)

In advance of their forthcoming novels, best-selling authors including John Grisham, Lee Child, and Jodi Picoult are releasing digital “singles,” standalone short stories or prequels to the books, for $1.99. (USA Today)

Poet Donald Hall on Solitude, Zadie Smith’s New Novel, and More
Tue, 18 Oct 2016 15:39:39 +0000 -

On posthumous poetry collections; two new books address attention in the digital world; Swedish Academy unable to reach Bob Dylan; and other news.

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This is all the info relevant to page 1 of the article.

Every day Poets & Writers Magazine scans the headlines—from publishing reports to academic announcements to literary dispatches—for all the news that creative writers need to know. Here are today’s stories:

“People want to come visit, but mostly I refuse them, preserving my continuous silence.… Now and then, especially at night, solitude loses its soft power and loneliness takes over. I am grateful when solitude returns.” Poet Donald Hall writes about his solitary life at age eighty-seven. (New Yorker)

The Swedish Academy reports that it has been unable to reach Bob Dylan since awarding him the Nobel Prize in Literature last Thursday. (Guardian)

Author Jeffrey Eugenides profiles novelist Zadie Smith for T Magazine. Smith’s fifth novel, Swing Time, comes out November 15 from Penguin Press.

Meanwhile, Jonathan Lethem talks about his tenth novel, A Gambler’s Anatomy. “I just love stories where you’re forced to do excess interpretive work. It’s like The Twilight Zone, where all the best episodes could be taken as allegorical stories of a mind devolving into madness.” (Electric Literature)

Benjamin Percy’s new collection of craft essays, Thrill Me: Essays on Fiction, is published today by Graywolf. At the Powell’s blog, Percy discusses the book, as well as his influences, grammatical pet peeves, writing advice, and more.

Poet Emilia Phillips considers the debates surrounding posthumous poetry collections, and reflects on her experiences helping to publish books by late poets Larry Levis and Claudia Emerson. (Ploughshares)

“The threat of our devices is that they take away the possibility of introspective longing and a sense of absence.” Tim Vanderbilt looks at two new books—Tim Wu’s The Attention Merchants and Kenneth Goldsmith’s Wasting Time on the Internet—that examine the digital world’s influence on our attention. (New Republic)

Good Sex in Fiction Award, Artist Reimagines W. B. Yeats Play, and More
Mon, 17 Oct 2016 15:27:49 +0000 -

Tom Wolfe novel adapted as miniseries without his knowledge; Margaret Atwood on Trump supporters and her fictional dystopias; Man Booker winner László Krasznahorkai on various notions of “home”; and other news.

Page 1
This is all the info relevant to page 1 of the article.

Every day Poets & Writers Magazine scans the headlines—from publishing reports to academic announcements to literary dispatches—for all the news that creative writers need to know. Here are today’s stories:

To combat the ridicule surrounding the Literary Review’s infamous Bad Sex in Fiction Award, which has been given annually since 1993, the Erotic Review is establishing, yes, a Good Sex in Fiction Award. (Independent)

Margaret Atwood reflects on the dystopias she created in her 1985 novel The Handmaid’s Tale, as well as in her recent MaddAddam trilogy, which she says are “the cusp of where we are living right now.” Atwood’s latest novel Hag-Seed, a retelling of Shakespeare’s The Tempest, is out now from Hogarth. (Guardian)

Speaking of dystopia, Hungarian novelist László Krasznahorkai discusses his latest novel Báró Wenckheim hazatér (Baron Wenckheim’s Homegoing), as well as the crises of living in humanized nature, and the perplexing notion of feeling “at home” in a place. Krasznahorkai received the Man Booker International Prize in 2015 for his “overall contribution to fiction on the world stage.” (Asymptote)

At NPR, journalist and author Jeff Chang talks about his new book We Gon’ Be Alright: Notes on Race and Resegregation, a collection of essays that examines recent protests and tragedies influenced by race.

Artist Simon Starling’s multimedia project based on poet William Butler Yeats’s 1916 noh-inspired play, At the Hawk’s Well, is on display at the Japan Society Gallery in New York City. Simon Starling: At Twilight (After W. B. Yeats’s Noh Reincarnation) commemorates the centenary of Yeats’s original production by reimagining the play “with newly created masks, costumes, and a dance on video juxtaposed with examples of classical Japanese art and masterpieces of Western Modernism that inspired the new works.” (Hyperallergic)

“Obsessing about how a certain person (or the Internet) will react to something you’ve written can interfere with your vision of the world you’re creating.” Fiction writer Rebecca Kauffman, whose debut novel, Another Place Youve Never Been, was released last week by Soft Skull Press, considers writers’ promotional tactics and her own resistance to social media. (Publishers Weekly)

Warner Brothers Television is developing a miniseries adaptation of Tom Wolfe’s 1987 novel, The Bonfire of Vanities, which will be distributed by Amazon. Wolfe, however, was unaware of the news. (Hollywood Reporter, Showbiz411)

Dylan’s Nobel, Disney’s Don Quixote, Nikky Finney on Black Girl Poetry, and More
Fri, 14 Oct 2016 20:03:23 +0000 -

A new app transcribes interviews; Curtis Sittenfeld on writing and friendship; famous novelists reimagine Shakespeare; and other news.

Page 1
This is all the info relevant to page 1 of the article.

Every day Poets & Writers Magazine scans the headlines—from publishing reports to academic announcements to literary dispatches—for all the news that creative writers need to know. Here are today’s stories:

In a development sure to make writers and journalists rejoice, a new service called Trint will transcribe interviews from audio to text. The service, which recently won a grant from Google, is currently in beta. (GalleyCat)

“As writers, Sam and I know that the expected way to conclude an essay about your friend who has awful cancer is with his death. But fulfilling expectations is often tedious, and Sam is not dead.” Curtis Sittenfeld on writing, friendship, and a battle with cancer. (New Yorker)

Nikky Finney on Donika Kelley’s Black Girl Poetry, and her first book, Bestiary, just out from Graywolf. (Literary Hub)

Adam Gopnik reviews Hogarth’s series of novels by famous authors that retell tales from Shakespeare. (New Yorker)

Maria Semple's novel Today Will Be Different (Little, Brown) and Juan Gabriel Vásquez's Reputations (Riverhead), translated by Anne McLean, are among seven new books recommended by New York Times Book Review editor Pamela Paul.

At a barbershop in Ypsilanti, Michigan, kids get a discount if they read a book aloud to their barber. (NPR)

Disney is developing a Don Quixote movie. (Variety)

And, in case you didn't have your fill of Bob Dylan opinion pieces yesterday, after it was announced that the musician-writer had won the Nobel Prize, Dwight Garner of the New York Times weighs in: "The Swedish Academy...has no explaining to do to most readers and listeners, however much they might have been pulling for Philip Roth or Don DeLillo or Margaret Atwood."

Scheduled pub date: 
October 14, 2016 - 1:00pm

Provided courtesy of:
Poets & Writers, Inc.

Multimedia Items from Poets & Writers

If At First You Don't Succeed...
Thu, 06 Feb 2014 17:49:57 +0000 -

Miranda Beverly-Whittemore is one of three novelists, profiled by Emily Raboteau in "If At First You Don't Succeed" (March/April 2014), who persevered despite the commercial "failure" of early books. From the profile:

read more

How Food Writing Fed My Fiction
Mon, 20 May 2013 14:15:23 +0000 -
Associated Content

Join fiction writer, dessert blogger, and baker Aaron Hamburger at Whole Foods Market in New York City as he prepares his delicious limoncello cupcakes and talks about what the art of food writing has taught him about fiction writing. Watch via YouTube.

Junot Díaz Records Audio of His New Book, This Is How You Lose Her
Thu, 02 Aug 2012 04:00:00 +0000 -
Associated Content

Ever wonder how an audio book is created? Watch this exclusive video of Junot Díaz recording the opening lines of his short story collection, This Is How You Lose Her (Riverhead Books, 2012), which is featured in the Page One section of our September/October 2012 issue.

The Bard Behind the Bar
Sun, 01 Jan 2012 18:54:13 +0000 -
Associated Content

Join contributor Robert Hershon for a pint at McSorley's Old Ale House, where poet and head bartender Geoffrey Bartholomew has sold more than five thousand copies of his self-published collection, The McSorley's Poems, without the aid of a high-powered marketing department or special advertising and promotions. Watch via YouTube.

The Corner Library
Tue, 01 Nov 2011 14:12:13 +0000 -

Poets & Writers Magazine takes a look inside the Corner Library, a tiny book depository serving the community in Brooklyn, New York's Williamsburg neighborhood.

Behind the Scenes at a Poets & Writers Cover Shoot
Fri, 01 Jul 2011 13:15:49 +0000 -

Go behind the scenes at the photo shoot with the literary agents featured on the cover of our July/August issue to see how much time and energy goes into capturing the images published in Poets & Writers Magazine. Join the photographer, the art director, the managing editor, and the editor of the magazine in a SoHo loft as they work toward the perfect cover.

Writing Contest Advice
Sun, 01 May 2011 19:44:51 +0000 -

Watch Stephanie G'Schwind, Camille Rankine, Michael Collier, and Beth Harrison offer their advice for poets and writers interested in submitting their work to writing contests. G'Schwind, director of the Center for Literary Publishing; Collier, director of the Bread Loaf Writers' Conference; Rankine, communications coordinator at Cave Canem Foundation; and Harrison, associate director of the Academy of American Poets, talked with editor Kevin Larimer as part of a roundtable interview published in the May/June 2011 issue of Poets & Writers Magazine.

The Future of Family-Friendly Residencies
Tue, 01 Mar 2011 14:28:07 +0000 -

Watch contributor Thomas Israel Hopkins—along with this wife, novelist Emily Barton, and their son, Tobias—discuss the impetus for writing "The Future of Family-Friendly Residencies." In the article, which appears in the March/April 2011 issue of Poets & Writers Magazine, Hopkins takes a look at the relatively small number of colonies that allow writers to bring children for their full stay and offers some suggestions for ways in which parent-writers and residency directors can work together to facilitate more programs that accommodate families.

Behind the Design of This Issue's Inspiring Cover
Sat, 01 Jan 2011 05:00:00 +0000 -
Associated Content

Watch editor Kevin Larimer's interview with illustrator Jim Tierney, who reveals his initial sketches and revisions of this issue's cover.

DIY: How to Coptic Bind a Chapbook
Mon, 01 Nov 2010 14:18:59 +0000 -
Associated Content

As a companion to Indie Innovators, a special section on groundbreaking presses and magazines, we demonstrate how to Coptic bind a chapbook. View the accompanying slideshow for information on formatting your book in Microsoft Word.