Daily News from Poets & Writers

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Daily News in the Writing Community from Poets & Writers

Poet Tomas Tranströmer Has Died, Wole Soyinka on Nigeria’s Election, and More
Mon, 30 Mar 2015 15:55:23 +0000 -

Fire Island Artist Residency destroyed; memoirs in the age of over-sharing; Dickens’s desk on display; 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:

Swedish poet and Nobel laureate Tomas Tranströmer, considered one of the most influential contemporary Scandinavian poets, passed away on Thursday at age eighty-three. The New York Times notes that the poet’s work, which has been translated into over sixty languages, was known for “shrewd metaphors couched in deceptively spare language, crystalline descriptions of natural beauty and explorations of the mysteries of identity and creativity.”

Last Thursday, a fire destroyed the Holly House hotel located on Long Island, New York. The building housed the Fire Island Artist Residency, which is the world’s first residency to host LGBTQ artists. (ArtNet)

In an interview with the Guardian, Nigerian Nobel Prize–winning writer and former political prisoner Wole Soyinka shared his fears about Nigeria’s corrupt electoral process and the “sinister force” behind it, and his recent conversation with Nigerian president Goodluck Jonathan.

This June, the arts nonprofit FLUX Foundation will construct a library made entirely out of books at the inaugural Bay Area Book Festival. The structure, called Lacuna, will be built from 50,000 donated books. (GalleyCat)

Thanks to a £780,000 grant from the National Heritage Memorial Fund, Charles Dickens’s writing desk, which was “hidden away” for over 150 years, will go on permanent public display at the Dickens Museum in London. (Guardian)

To mark the centenary of his death, the British Library is releasing a new book about the celebrated British World War I poet Rupert Brooke. The Second I Saw You: The True Love Story of Rupert Brooke and Phyllis Gardner reveals a different side to the “Edwardian hero”—one that opposed women’s rights movements. (Daily Mail)

“In her almost psychedelic musings on time and what it means to preserve one’s own life, she has managed to transcribe an entirely interior world. She has written the memoir we didn’t realize we needed.” At the New Yorker, Alice Gregory reflects on Sarah Manguso’s new memoir Ongoingness, and journaling in our age of over-sharing.

Lawrence Ferlinghetti on San Francisco’s Tech Culture, Writers’ Work Spaces, and More
Fri, 27 Mar 2015 16:10:05 +0000 -

The Tarot’s literary appeal; Ferguson Library director receives ALA prize; Clean Reader app will stop selling books; 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:

On his ninety-sixth birthday this past Tuesday, San Francisco poetry icon and founder of City Lights bookstore Lawrence Ferlinghetti spoke with PBS Newshour about San Francisco’s cultural changes over the decades, and how the city’s tech boom has left him lamenting “The Poetic City That Was.”

“We’re intent on bringing something new to the table, on providing new avenues and exploring intersections that in the past have been overlooked — and hope that with new work and new approaches, we will be able to find new audiences.” At the Washington Post, book critic Ron Charles talks to the editors of the Los Angeles Review of Books’ recently launched literary journal the Offing

The space where one writes is personal and crucial to the creative process. At the New York Times, seven major authors including Rachel Kushner, Peter Carey, and Paul Muldoon offer glimpses of their writing spaces. “It’s a little bit like hanging out in a high-end coffin,” Muldoon says of his writing room.

“Chinese poetry has 2,000 years of tradition at its back….But the thing is, most Chinese believe poetry peaked in the Tang Dynasty. That ended more than 1,100 years ago. So for today’s poets, their chosen art form’s exalted status can feel like a double-edged sword.” At Public Radio International, Alina Simone reports on China’s contemporary poetry scene.

Over at the New York Review of Books blog, Christopher Benfry examines the cultural history of the Tarot and how the occult influenced the poetry of William Butler Yeats, T. S. Eliot, and other famous writers. “It is not surprising that the images on Tarot cards, so vivid and mysterious, appeal to poets as a means of providing metaphors.”

Ferguson Public Library director Scott Bonner has received the American Library Association’s Lemony Snicket Prize for Noble Librarians Faced with Adversity. Bonner kept the Ferguson, Missouri, library open during the traumatic week in September following a grand jury’s decision not to indict officer Darren Wilson in the shooting of Michael Brown. (Melville House)

After significant criticism from major authors including Joanne Harris and Margaret Atwood, the Clean Reader app, which allows its users to edit out profanity in e-books, and also sold books through Inktera's online platform, announced it would remove all titles from its online catalogue. (Guardian)

Henry James Reviews Walt Whitman, Martyn Goff Has Died, and More
Thu, 26 Mar 2015 16:08:26 +0000 -

Poets write on Jacob Lawrence paintings; an interview with Raúl Zurita; mother-daughter artistic collaborations; 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:

Martyn Goff, bookseller and administrator of the Man Booker Prize from 1970 to 2006, has died at age ninety-one. In a statement, current Booker Foundation chair Jonathan Taylor said: “His contribution was invaluable and under Martyn the prize grew in stature and reputation, not least because of his tireless championing of contemporary fiction of the highest quality.” (Guardian)

“It has been a melancholy task to read this book [Drum-Taps]; and it is a still more melancholy one to write about it. It exhibits the effort of an essentially prosaic mind to lift itself, by a prolonged muscular strain, into poetry.” For its 150th anniversary issue, the Nation has reprinted twenty-two-year-old Henry James’s 1865 review of Walt Whitman’s Drum-Taps. The complete edition will be re-released for the first time since its original publication by New York Review Books in April.

The Museum of Modern Art in New York City has commissioned ten major poets including Rita Dove, Terrance Hayes, and Yusef Komunyakaa to write poems inspired by Jacob Lawrence’s Migration Series of paintings, which are currently on view at the museum. Elizabeth Alexander, who selected the participating poets, will moderate a reading of the Migration Series poems at the MoMA on May 1.

Speaking of poetry responding to painting, the New York Times recently featured the collaborative work of poet Susan Howe and painter R. H. Quaytman, who is Howe’s daughter.

A crowdfunding campaign is underway to raise money for a documentary about Alvin Schwartz’s book series Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark. According to producer Cody Meirick, who launched the campaign on crowdfunding platform Indiegogo, the documentary will explore the history of “one of the most controversial works of modern children’s literature.”

“Of course, poetry is not the same as history. But I think it comes before history in the way in which it represents realities and individuals that come up against them. So, it’s like a an X-ray, a history of human emotions, and a history of how individuals are affected by the real.” At the Poetry Foundation, Daniel Borzutzky interviews Chilean poet Raúl Zurita about his new collection, The Country of Planks (Action, 2015), which Borzutzky translated into English.

Friendships abound in many films and on television, but what about in recent books of fiction? At the Guardian, novelist A D Miller considers the reasons friendships in modern fiction appear to be underrepresented.




Terrance Hayes Profile, Broadside Press Goes Digital, and More
Wed, 25 Mar 2015 15:55:07 +0000 -

The forgotten Handmaid’s Tale film; Charles Bukowski’s love of cats; critical essays on Adrienne Rich; 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:

“His work explores multiple identities and multiple forms of masculinity—how to be, or become, various kinds of men—but it is also an art of evasion…Hayes works to escape not the African-American identity but the demand that he (or anyone) express that identity in the same way all the time.” At the New York Times, literary critic Stephen Burt profiles the work of poet and MacArthur Genius Grant–recipient Terrance Hayes

Detroit-based publisher Broadside Press—the oldest African-American publishing house in the country—has received a grant from the Knight Foundation to digitize its vast archive of African-American poetry. Broadside’s collection includes work from Gwendolyn Brooks, Nikki Giovanni, Etheridge Knight, Sonia Sanchez, Margaret Walker, Dudley Randall, and others.

The latest issue of Critical Flame commemorates the third anniversary of the death of poet Adrienne Rich with a series of essays on her work by editors and contemporary writers.

At the Atlantic, Sophie Gilbert revisits the almost forgotten 1990 film adaptation of Margaret Atwood’s best-known novel The Handmaid’s Tale. Gilbert discusses the film’s poor critical and audience reception, and why Atwood’s dystopian tale may still prove too “radical” for a more faithful screen version.

Irina Balakhonova, founder of Russian publishing house Samokat, has received the 2015 Jeri Laber International Freedom to Publish Award. Samokat publishes LGBT–themed works despite Russia’s homophobic culture and ban on publications with such themes. (Shelf Awareness)

HarperCollins has agreed to provide 14,000 of its backlisted titles to a new subscription platform called Playster. HarperCollins is the first major book publisher to sign a contract with Playster, which currently offers subscribers access to music, games, TV shows, and films for a monthly fee. (Publishers Weekly)

Charles Bukowski, the “laureate of American low life,” had a surprising fondness for felines. In October, Canongate will posthumously publish On Cats, a collection of Bukowski’s previously unpublished poems that reveals a gentler side of the poet known for writing about alcohol and unhealthy relationships. Two other posthumous collections by the author, On Writing and On Love, will be published in July and next February, respectively. (Independent)

New Saul Bellow Biography, Clean Reader App Controversy, and More
Tue, 24 Mar 2015 16:13:40 +0000 -

Folio Prize winner announced; DIY audiobooks; Jorie Graham’s body of work; 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:

A new biography of late author Saul Bellow, The Life of Saul Bellow: To Fame and Fortune, will be published in May. In advance of the biography’s release, Lee Siegel reflects on Bellow’s literary influence and controversial reputation. (Vulture)

“It’s impossible to overstate how my relationship to music forms a preserve for the esoteric or even spiritual aspect of my relationship to cultural stuff, to human expressivity…it’s a safe enclosure.” Jonathan Lethem and Ben Arthur talk with one another about their craft and the intersections of music and writing at the Believer.

The winner of the second annual Folio Prize for fiction was announced last night. Indian-American author Akhil Sharma received the £40,000 prize (approximately $60,000) for his semi-autobiographical novel Family Life. (Guardian)

Publishers Weekly provides practical advice and several platform options for writers looking to self-publish an audiobook.

“I write to find what I have to say. I edit to figure out how to say it right.” In this week’s installment of the New York Times Bookends series, authors Thomas Mallon and Cheryl Strayed discuss the importance of both the writing and revising stages of their creative processes.  

Several authors including Joanne Harris are criticizing a new app called Clean Reader. The app allows users to replace explicit words in e-books with “sanitized” versions, sometimes without authorial consent. (Telegraph)

“Poets tend to graduate from the particular to the abstract, moving from observable reality toward its clandestine laws: from daffodils to solitude, from waves and minutes to Time. Graham works in the opposite direction, moving down a steep slope from abstraction to concrete experience.” At the New Yorker, Dan Chiasson examines the work of acclaimed poet Jorie Graham, whose writing career spans nearly forty years.

James Patterson Increasing Library Grant, World Poetry Day, and More
Mon, 23 Mar 2015 15:56:07 +0000 -

Rare Tennessee Williams story published; Indian literature and colonialism; celebrating Ginsberg’s “Howl”; 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:

Two weeks after announcing his plan to donate $1.25 million to school libraries, James Patterson is increasing his donation to $1.5 million, due to overwhelming demand.  (Shelf Awareness)

A previously unpublished short story by playwright Tennessee Williams appears in the spring issue of the Strand. "The Eye That Saw Death" is a horror tale seemingly indebted to Edgar Allan Poe. (Associated Press)

“This is not the voice of a confident country. It sounds rather like a country whose painful relationship with language has left it voiceless.” At the New York Times, novelist Aatish Taseer reflects on how class and language impacted India’s literary tradition.

World Poetry Day took place this past Saturday, March 21. The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) established the day in 1999 with the aim of “supporting linguistic diversity through poetic expression and offering endangered languages the opportunity to be heard within their communities.”

In honor of World Poetry Day, over one thousand coffee shops in twenty-three countries participated in the “Pay With a Poem” promotion, in which customers could trade their own poems for a cup of coffee. (Guardian)

Why is The Great Gatsby considered the “Great American Novel?” At the Washington Post, Joel Achenbach reviews Maureen Corrigan’s book So We Read On: How The Great Gatsby Came to Be and Why it Endures.

On April 7 in Los Angeles, Courtney Love, Devendra Banhart, and other musicians will perform in a benefit concert marking the sixtieth anniversary of Allen Ginsberg’s poem “Howl.” Proceeds will go to the David Lynch Foundation, which utilizes Transcendental Meditation techniques to help individuals suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder. (Poetry Foundation)

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.