Daily News from Poets & Writers

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Daily News in the Writing Community from Poets & Writers

Reading Other Women, Sound and Syntax, and More
Fri, 30 Sep 2016 16:13:30 +0000 -

PEN appoints Saeed Jones and Hanya Yanagihara to its board of trustees; Mary Karr on memoir and the faults of memory; on the success of Paula Hawkins’s The Girl on the Train; 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:

“Literature can be a primary engine of dialogue and empathy, yet it is often complicit in silencing women of color.” Writer Rafia Zakaria is launching a new article series at the Boston Review called Reading Other Women. In her introduction to the series, Zakaria says the “aim is to model a far more idiosyncratic way of reading as self-making, in which women of color can seek and find texts by other women that triangulate their own identities back to them.”

Ahead of the October 7 film adaptation release of The Girl on the Train, a piece at the New York Times looks at the fast and monumental success of the novel by Paula Hawkins.

BOMB features an interview with poet Lewis Freedman about his forthcoming book, Residual Synonyms for the Name of God, an investigation of how language proliferates from inherited religious structures. “It’s a book of residual synonyms for the divine name. Because the name of God in rabbinic literature is both an unsayable name and a central force within religious life there’s a constant elaboration of its naming.”  

PEN America has appointed five new members to its board of trustees, including Penguin Random House CEO Markus Dohle, BuzzFeed deputy editor of culture Saeed Jones, and Hanya Yanagihara, author of the acclaimed novel A Little Life. (GalleyCat)

“What kind of person denies our youth any kind of literature that increases openness and tolerance?” In honor of Banned Books Week, fiction writer I. W. Gregorio recalls the experience of having her debut novel, None of the Above, challenged during its release year, as well as the power of books to change lives. (Publishers Weekly

Nonfiction writer Mary Karr, author most recently of The Art of Memoir, talks with NPR about the challenges of the memoir writing process and the faults of memory.

Meanwhile, at the Best American Poetry blog, National Book Award–winning poet Terrance Hayes explores the connections between poetry and sound, sense, and syntax—the feeling that “something beyond words [is] being communicated in the bones of poems.”

Seamus Heaney Center Opens to Public, Trayvon Martin’s Parents to Publish Memoir, and More
Thu, 29 Sep 2016 15:40:50 +0000 -

President Obama proclaims October as National Arts and Humanities Month; National Book Foundation announces 5 Under 35 honorees; Hollywood’s “most sought-after word nerds”; 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:

Tomorrow, the Seamus Heaney HomePlace will open to the public in the Nobel Laureate’s hometown of Bellaghy, Ireland. The literary and arts center is a permanent exhibition honoring the poet’s life and work. The center is currently collecting stories from people who knew Heaney, for an archive titled “My Seamus Heaney Story.” (Irish Times)

On January 31, 2017, three weeks prior to the fifth anniversary of Trayvon Martin’s killing, Random House’s One World imprint will release a memoir written by Martin’s parents. One World editor Christopher Jackson says the book—titled Rest in Power: The Enduring Life of Trayvon Martin—“brings Trayvon back to life as the full, three-dimensional, complex kid he was…and then to the dark and confusing days following his death, which slowly transform into the blossoming of a powerful, historic movement for change and healing that we’re still watching unfold five years later.”

The National Book Foundation has announced its 2016 5 Under 35 honorees. This year’s winners are Brit Bennett, Yaa Gyasi, Greg Jackson, S. Li, and Thomas Pierce. The annual $1,000 awards are given to debut fiction writers under the age of 35 “whose work promises to leave a lasting impression on the literary landscape.” Check out the Grants & Awards Blog for details.

President Barack Obama has officially proclaimed October 2016 as National Arts and Humanities Month. “Be it through the pen of a poet, the voice of a singer, or the canvas of a painter, let us continue to harness the unparalleled ways the arts and humanities bring people together.” (whitehouse.gov)

At Bookforum, fiction writer Alexandra Kleeman discusses her new story collection, Intimations, the connections between literature and dreams, and why she gravitates towards stories of fear. “I like menace, dread, and fear because they’re all feelings that involve a heightened sensitivity to your surroundings.”

In honor of Banned Books Week, which ends October 1, test your knowledge of banned and challenged books with this quiz from the New York Public Library.

Margaret Atwood, Neil Gaiman, Paula Hawkins, and Liane Moriarty are among the Hollywood Reporter’s 2016 list of “Hollywood’s 25 Most Powerful Authors,” which the publication also refers to as “the industry’s most sought-after word nerds.” Ahem.

Maya Angelou Documentary, Shirley Jackson’s Revival, and More
Wed, 28 Sep 2016 15:39:39 +0000 -

Viet Than Nguyen on cultural appropriation; Stephen King’s “singular weirdness”; Authors Guild condemns Google’s “commercial use of expressive authorship”; 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:

The trailer for the upcoming Maya Angelou documentary, Maya Angelou: And Still I Rise, has been released. The film, set for release on October 14, features interviews with prominent figures including Oprah Winfrey and current presidential nominee Hillary Clinton. (Deadline)

Pulitzer Prize–winning novelist Viet Than Nguyen writes about the ongoing debate over cultural appropriation, the larger questions it raises for writers and the public, and suggests ways to move past extremism. “First, recognize the history of economic appropriation that makes possible cultural appropriation…. Second, engage in careful and curious conversation with people different from ourselves, both in terms of demographics and ideas.” (Los Angeles Times

With yesterday’s release of Ruth Franklin’s biography, Shirley Jackson: A Rather Haunted Life, Jackson, an underrated suspense novelist during her lifetime, is experiencing a revival. (New Republic)

Fiction writer and editor Lincoln Michel considers the “singular weirdness” of Stephen King, and his influence on making popular culture, from television shows to best-selling novels, “weird” again. (Vice)

Michael Chabon, whose ninth novel Moonglow will be released in November, writes for GQ about taking his son Abraham to Paris Fashion Week. “I took my son to Paris Fashion Week, and all I got was a profound understanding of who he is, what he wants to do with his life, and how it feels to watch a grown man stride down a runway wearing shaggy yellow Muppet pants.”

At the Rumpus, fiction writer Anuk Arudpragasm discusses his debut novel, The Story of a Brief Marriage, which “condenses the twenty-six years of the Sri Lankan civil war into an intimate human story, told over the course of a day and a night.”

To better understand and improve Google’s conversational style, Google researchers have been using sets of language data from more than eleven thousand novels published online. The authors of these novels, however, were not asked permission to have their work used in this research. The Authors Guild has condemned Google for “blatantly commercial use of expressive authorship.” (Guardian)

Eleven-Year-Old #1000BlackGirlBooks Creator Launches Zine, Bettering American Poetry, and More
Tue, 27 Sep 2016 15:45:25 +0000 -

“Diverse” books are more likely to be banned; the legacy of Henry James; Maggie Nelson on how poetry informs her nonfiction; 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:

PEN America’s annual report on banned books has revealed a shift in recent years in censoring more books that represent diverse points of view. The analysis states that children’s books “by or about people of color, people who identify as LGBT, and people with disabilities (‘diverse books’) are significantly more likely to be challenged or banned even as they make up a disproportionately small fraction of all published literature.” (Electric Literature)

In better diverse book news, eleven-year-old Marley Dias, who launched the nationally successful book drive #1000BlackGirlBooks last year, has edited a zine for Elle.com. As Dias writes in her editors note, Marley Mag is “about women and girls who have left their imprint on the world,” and aims to “elevate the voices of all those who have been ignored and left out.”

VIDA: Women in Literary Arts recently launched an interview series with writers featured in the forthcoming anthology Bettering American Poetry, whose aim is to “[reflect] a ranging plurality of voices in American poetry and illuminate the possibilities of sharing space.”

Creative nonfiction writer Maggie Nelson talks with the Los Angeles Times about receiving a MacArthur “Genius” fellowship and how her poetry background informs the risks she takes in her nonfiction writing.

Meanwhile, fiction and nonfiction writer Kashana Cauley discusses Intersections, the regular column she writes for Catapult. “I aim to tell entertaining, partially personal, partially data-based and fact-driven stories that, if the reader wants, will give them a different way of looking at a corner of the world.”

At the Smart Set, author and professor Paula Marantz Cohen considers the legacy and later works of Henry James. In July, the U.S. Postal Office issued an eighty-nine-cent stamp in honor of the author. 

Celebrating Censored Poetry, Capote’s Ashes, and More
Mon, 26 Sep 2016 16:04:02 +0000 -

Earnest versus cool prose; how poetry defamiliarizes experience; Adonis on poetry as salvation; 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:

To celebrate Banned Books Week, the Academy of American Poets spotlights historically censored poets, including Charles Baudelaire, Geoffrey Chaucer, Allen Ginsberg, and others. The Academy will feature a different banned poetry book on its website every day this week.

“India in my poetry serves the same function as God does in Pascal’s universe. It is everywhere present, but nowhere apparent.” Pulitzer Prize–winning poet Vijay Seshadri talks about religion, the importance of defamiliarizing experience through poetry, and shifting between micro and macro perspectives in his work. (DiveDapper)

Meanwhile, Syrian poet Adonis reflects on poetry as a source of salvation for the conflicts in the Middle East. “Poetry cannot slit a child’s throat, nor kill a man or destroy a museum.” (Times of Israel)

Over the weekend, the ashes of In Cold Blood author Truman Capote were sold at auction for $43,750. Julien’s Auctions, the Los Angeles auction house that sold the ashes, did not anticipate the high selling price. (Guardian)

At the Spectator blog, Theo Hobson considers the “inhuman coolness” of a group of contemporary male writers—including Geoff Dyer, Ben Lerner, and Tom McCarthy—and argues that their writing is marked by an aversion to “higher” earnestness: “One must not display earnestness in the traditional domain of the human soul. One must be dispassionate on two fronts: the meaning of life (to be either religious or atheist is embarrassing), and sex.” 

Rion Amilcar Scott talks with fellow writer Roxane Gay about representing people of color in their work, and the failure of the capitalist publishing market to support more diverse voices. “If the market was going to save us by now it would have.” (Literary Hub)

In an interview at BuzzFeed, poet and recent MacArthur “Genius” grant recipient Claudia Rankine discusses the recent police shooting of black civilian Keith Lamont Scott, and the subsequent protests in Charlotte, North Carolina. “We are in a state of emergency, and as American citizens, we should acknowledge it. Silence is a form of complicity.” Rankine also talks about what an updated version of her 2014 book, Citizen, would look like.

The History of Banned Books, Whitman’s Empathy, and More
Fri, 23 Sep 2016 15:55:04 +0000 -

James Patterson cancels publication of novel The Murder of Stephen King; Lidia Yuknavitch reimagines Joan of Arc; PEN releases report on China’s censorship of foreign journalists; 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:

Yesterday, President Obama presented the 2015 National Medals of Arts and National Medals of Humanities. Poet Louise Glück and fiction writer James McBride are among the writers who received National Humanities Medals. (NPR)

Thriller writer James Patterson has cancelled the release of his novel The Murder of Stephen King, stating that he did not want to cause Stephen King and his family “any discomfort.” The novel was initially due for publication in November as part of Patterson’s BookShots series. (Guardian)

Pulitzer Prize–winning author Michael Chabon shares the photos that inspired his anticipated novel Moonglow, which comes out November 22 from HarperCollins. (Entertainment Weekly)

Meanwhile, at Bust, Lidia Yuknavitch talks about her forthcoming novel, The Book of Joan, a contemporary reimagining of the story of Joan of Arc. Yuknavitch’s novel will be released in April 2017.

Looking ahead to Banned Books Week—which begins Monday, September 26—Amy Brady reflects on the history and present of book banning in America. (Literary Hub)

“Rather than succumbing to self-righteous demonization, Whitman illustrated the power of a human empathy that transcends ideological bellicosity.” Writer E. Thomas Finan returns to Walt Whitman’s 1865 collection of Civil War poetry, Drum-Taps, for hope and understanding in difficult times. (Millions

PEN America has released a detailed report on the Chinese government’s censorship of the foreign press, detailing stories of “foreign reporters and their local news assistants tailed, manhandled, jailed, and physically abused if they become associated with a critical story.”

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:

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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.