Daily News from Poets & Writers

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Daily News in the Writing Community from Poets & Writers

Zadie Smith on Optimism and Despair, Bookbinding to Relieve Stress, and More
Fri, 09 Dec 2016 16:33:16 +0000 -

Guardian to form partnership with Vice; on Patti Smith, Bob Dylan, and the Nobel Prize; Terry McDonnell on his new memoir; 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:

“I believe in human limitation, not out of any sense of fatalism but out of a learned caution, gleaned from both recent and distant history. We will never be perfect: that is our limitation.” Novelist Zadie Smith responds to a frequently asked question about her work: “In your earlier novels you sounded so optimistic, but now your books are tinged with despair. Is that fair to say?” (New York Review of Books)

“Some have called her the Godmother of Punk, others the Grande Dame of Alternative Rock. But what Patti Smith really is, deep down in her heart, is a poet.” A consideration of why Patti Smith is a suitable replacement for Bob Dylan at the Nobel Prize Ceremony—which Dylan is unable to attend—for winning the Nobel Prize in Literature. (DW)

The Guardian is forming a partnership with Vice Media that will include reports airing on Vice’s nightly news program in the U.S. and U.K. This is Vice News’s first deal with another news organization.

The Rumpus features an interview with famed magazine editor Terry McDonnell about his new memoir, The Accidental Life, which includes stories of the writers he worked with during his time at Rolling Stone and other publications. The Accidental Life is also featured in “Nine More New Memoirs,” in the September/October 2016 issue of Poets & Writers.

Melville House has announced plans to publish What We Do Now: Standing Up for Your Values in Trump’s America, an anthology of essays by political figures, journalists, and more. Among the notable contributors are Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren, and Gloria Steinem. (GalleyCat)

Looking for an uncommon stress reliever? Consider the act of bookbinding. (Gizmodo)

The A/V Club rounds up reader and staff responses to question of what non-2016 book they read this year.

Sara Gruen, author of the best-selling novel Water for Elephants, has drawn ire from readers for attempting to resell more than a hundred “Hatchimals”—a popular children’s toy—that she purchased on Ebay. (Los Angeles Times)

Ann Patchett’s Bookstore Guide, Rebecca Solnit’s Political Manifesto, and More
Thu, 08 Dec 2016 16:26:27 +0000 -

Gabriel García Márquez; a poet examines U.S. government apologies to Native Americans over the past two centuries; and more.

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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:

Following the election, an updated edition of Rebecca Solnit’s political manifesto, Hope in the Dark, originally published in 2004 in response to George W. Bush and the war in Iraq, has sold out in print in the United States and has upwards of 33,000 digital downloads so far. “History is full of people whose influence was most powerful after they were gone,” Solnit stated two days after the election. (Guardian)

Best-selling author Ann Patchett, who owns Parnassus Books in Nashville, provides a guide to a number of notable independent bookstores around the country. (New York Times)

“Before I began this series of poems, I didn’t think of myself as a political writer.” Native American poet Layli Long Soldier discusses her forthcoming collection, WHEREAS, a project “examining the language of the U.S. government over the past two-hundred-forty years in its treaties and apologies to Native people—and the officiousness and duplicity that is contained in those documents.” (PBS NewsHour)

Fiction writer Tony Tulathimutte, author of the novel Private Citizens, considers why there isn’t a “voice of a generation” novel for Millennials, and why the idea of the generational novel minimizes individual experience. “The desire to universalize…and declare that any book speaks for everyone, ends up shortchanging both the novel and the generation.” (New York Times)

A new report has found that late Cuban dictator Fidel Castro acted as an unofficial copyeditor to novelist and Nobel laureate Gabriel García Márquez. (Guardian)

Fiction writer D. Foy discusses his new novel, Patricide, out now from Stalking Horse Press. “I began to consider the uber-matrix in which our fathers are molded. What is the father? How is it he’s become the figure of power and fear he is? What is patriarchy? How does the patriarchy maintain dominance and control, and how and why does its influence pervade every aspect of our society and culture?” (Believer)

Signature provides a month-by-month readers guide to the best books of 2016.

BookCourt to Close After Thirty-Five Years, NPR’s Book Concierge, and More
Wed, 07 Dec 2016 16:24:09 +0000 -

Fiction writers Mat Johnson and Samuel Sattin on writing comics and novels; Artists struggle to create in Trump’s America; new literary, feminist, and political magazine seeks funding; 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:

Looking for a new book to read? NPR has released its 2016 Book Concierge, an interactive online guide to help you find a new book from a selection of more than three hundred titles curated by NPR’s editorial staff.

Fiction writers Mat Johnson and Samuel Sattin discuss their experiences writing both novels and comics, how to write post-apocalyptic work after the presidential election. (Paste)

Speaking of comics, DC Entertainment’s Rebirth program was launched earlier this year, and features a lineup of classic superheroes in brand new stories. Shelf Awareness lists the Rebirth titles arriving in January, including Superman Vol. 1: Son of Superman, written by Peter J. Tomasi, and Green Arrow Vol. 1: The Death and Life of Oliver Queen, written by frequent Poets & Writers contributor Benjamin Percy. 

BookCourt, a beloved independent bookshop in the Cobble Hill neighborhood of Brooklyn, New York, will close after thirty-five years. Though its many patrons are saddened by the news, fiction writer and Brooklyn resident Emma Straub announced in a blog post that she and her husband have secured initial funding to set up a new bookstore in the neighborhood. (Gothamist)

Fiction writer Porochista Khakpour, poet Keith S. Wilson, and other writers are starting a new feminist literary magazine, ROAR, as a “direct response to the women hating, racist, homophobic, xenophobic, environement savaging, bigoted-in-every-wau kakistocracy of a presidency and administration we face."

As more publishers turn to audio to supplement their books, Macmillan has launched a new podcast network for authors to deepen and sustain their relationships with readers. If literary podcasts are your thing, check out Ampersand: The Poets & Writers Podcast

At Esquire, Diana Spechler addresses the fear that artists, writers, and entertainers are feeling as they struggle to create art in Trump’s America, and offers ideas for reconnecting with creativity.

On a lighter note, Flavorwire offers ideas for bookish inspired vacations, from a Tokyo hostel where you can sleep in a bookcase, to a Lord of the Rings–esque hotel in New Zealand.

Matthew Zapruder's Call to Action, Hotels for Book Lovers, and More
Tue, 06 Dec 2016 16:57:43 +0000 -

Creative nonfiction writer Janice Lee on her new essay collection; Kafka’s sexual phobias were actually pretty normal; Bob Dylan’s Nobel speech to be read on his behalf; 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:

Looking for a hotel for holiday travel? The New York Times features an array of hotels for book lovers.

Bob Dylan will not attend the upcoming ceremony in Sweden to receive his Nobel Prize for Literature, but the Swedish Academy has announced that his speech will be read on his behalf. The academy also announced that musician and writer Patti Smith will perform Dylan’s song “A Hard Rain’s a-Gonna Fall” at the ceremony as a tribute to Dylan. So far, the speech reader has not been named. (New York Times

Matthew Zapruder urges America’s poets to write through our post-election fears and anxieties in order to preserve the free space of imagination, which he says is vital to our survival. “Whatever kind of poetry anyone writes, or whatever art we make, there is always time to do the necessary work of making our society better.” Zapruder will be participating in the Poets & Writers Live conference in San Francisco next month. (Literary Hub)

Poet Joanna C. Valente interviews creative nonfiction writer Janice Lee about her new essay collection, The Sky Isn’t Blue, as well as the music she listens to while writing, the books she has always identified with, and her apocalypse plans. (Civil Coping Mechanisms) 

Meanwhile, poet Daniel Borzutzky talks about his National Book Award–winning collection The Performance of Becoming Human, and how its title evokes the Franz Kafka story “A Report to an Academy.” (Chicago Times

Speaking of Kafka, according to Reiner Stach, a Franz Kafka academic and author of a three-volume biography of the author, Kafka’s fear of sex and physical contact was totally normal in society at the time. (Guardian)

 Joshua Topolsky, founder of the website the Verge, has launched the Outline, a new site featuring cultural criticism and longform journalism optimized for mobile reading. Topolsky says the site aims to be “a next-generation version of the New Yorker.”

Audiobook History, James Patterson Seeks Cowriter, and More
Mon, 05 Dec 2016 16:09:22 +0000 -

Westworld and writer’s block; topical book F*CK YOU, 2016 comes out tomorrow; Transit Press founders on publishing works in translation; 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:

Best-selling author James Patterson is launching a second writing contest to find a coauthor for his next book. Students enrolled in Patterson’s MasterClass are eligible to apply. Earlier this year, Patterson hosted a similar competition and selected Kecia Bal; their coauthored book, The Dolls, went on pre-sale on Friday. (GalleyCat)

“In the year that David Bowie died, Brexit shocked us, ‘Hiddleswift’ was a thing and Trump trumped, we are all asking ourselves, was 2016 really the worst year ever?” That’s the synopsis for Michael Joesph’s new book, F*CK YOU, 2016, which comes out tomorrow. (Bookseller)

Meanwhile, poet Nin Andrews interviews poet Dante Di Stefano about his book, Love Is a Stone Endlessly in Flight, as well as the anthology Di Stefano is editing in response to Trump’s impending presidency. (Best American Poetry)

The Financial Times reports on the current success of the audiobook, and its early use as audio recording for the blind.

American nonfiction writer Janie Johnson has come under fire for relaying comments on social media that London has been radically changed over the past two decades due to the influence of Islam. (Telegraph)

Adam and Ashley Levy, the husband-and-wife cofounders of the Oakland-based Transit Press, discuss their new publishing venture, which specializes in books in translation. (Publishers Weekly)

At the Ringer, a writer discusses how the popular and mysterious new show Westworld is really a story about writing and writer’s block.


García Márquez Library Goes to Austin, Harper Lee’s Hometown Makeover, and More
Fri, 02 Dec 2016 16:24:38 +0000 -

Merriam-Webster dictionary urges its users to stop looking up “fascism”; drink a cocktail made from old books; on working for a ghostwriter; 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:

The Harry Ransom Center at the University of Texas in Austin has acquired a collection of books from Gabriel García Márquez’s library. The collection includes signed books given to García Márquez from Nobel Prize winners Toni Morrison, Orhan Pamuk, and Pablo Neruda, as well as books gifted to him from world leaders. (Los Angeles Times)

The late Harper Lee’s lawyer has plans to turn the author’s hometown of Monroeville, Alabama, into a tourist destination to honor Lee’s legacy. The proposed plan includes constructing a museum, creating replicas of homes in To Kill a Mockingbird, and renovating Lee’s house on West Avenue. (New York Times)

Merriam-Webster Dictionary is urging its users to stop looking up the word “fascism” to prevent it from becoming the word of the year. (Guardian)

Meanwhile, the Oakland-based website Dictionary.com’s word of the year is “xenophobia.” (Smithsonian)

It turns out even ghostwriters sometimes have ghostwriters. Author Michael Hafford reflects on his time spent working for a memoir ghostwriter. (Literary Hub)

Now that it’s December, Flavorwire recommends ten books to “throw light on the darkest month of the year.”

Do you love books so much you want to…drink them? Why not, right? The Columbia Room bar in Washington, D.C., serves a cocktail made with actual pages of hundred-year-old books. “The old books are combined with Armagnac, vintage PX sherry, a porcini cordial, and eucalyptus to create a sweet dessert drink with a ‘savory edge.’ The cocktail is served in a flask that’s placed inside a hollowed-out book.” (Washingtonian)

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.