Daily News from Poets & Writers

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Daily News in the Writing Community from Poets & Writers

C. D. Wright Tribute, Love Letters From Your Writing, and More
Fri, 12 Feb 2016 17:12:23 +0000 -

Margaret Atwood on the science of humanity; Saeed Jones in conversation with Alexander Chee; love poems that will make you seem sensitive and smart; 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:

“Our biggest technology that we ever, ever invented was articulated language with built-out grammar. It is that that allows us to imagine things far in the future and things way back in the past.” Acclaimed author Margaret Atwood talks about science and storytelling, her participation in the Future Library Project, and the limitations of climate fiction or “cli fi.” (Slate)

“When I think of your writing, I think of unadorned truths wrought in an unmistakably unique voice, a peerless acuity, sharpness. Poetry that is unafraid, text that does not hesitate to unveil. Innards of landscapes and incongruities exposed.” Poet Laynie Brown’s lyric essay remembers the poetry and mourns the loss of poet C. D. Wright, who died on January 12. (Boston Review)

In the fourth installment of the Rumpus’s GuildTalk series, in which a member of the Authors Guild interviews an exciting new literary talent, novelist Alexander Chee interviews poet Saeed Jones, who serves as BuzzFeed’s new executive editor of culture.

A new biography of Franz Kafka appears to complicate the idea that the writer was a tortured neurotic. “He loved beer and slapstick. He undertook a fitness regime by a Dutch exercise guru.” Part of a three-volume series by Reiner Stach, Is That Kafka? 99 Finds is forthcoming from New Directions on March 21. The book is translated from the German by Kurt Beals. (Nation)

Ever since the publication of Don Quixote in 1605, Miguel de Cervantes’s influence on the history of literature remains. Professor and writer William Egginton comments on Cervates’s lasting literary and intellectual impact. (Signature)

The Daily Beast looks into the fair use case—and the real motivations behind the lawsuit—between the New York Times and independent publisher Powerhouse Books, over the photography used on the cover, binding, and back cover of David Shields’s new book War Is Beautiful: The New York Times Pictoral Guide to the Glamour of Armed Conflict.

You can admit it: Your neglected writing needs a little extra love this Valentine’s Day. Read these love letters from your writing over at Electric Literature. You can even add your own letters on Twitter with the hashtag #WritingValentines.

Did you say you wanted more Valentine’s Day related items? We thought so. Poet Jay Deshpande has picked out some contemporary new poets whose poems are “guaranteed to make you seem sensitive and smart,” even though you don’t need help with that, but hey, the poems are good anyway. (Slate)

Mockingbird Heads to Broadway, Gardening and Writing, and More
Thu, 11 Feb 2016 16:59:21 +0000 -

Paddle out to the floating library; coauthor a book with James Patterson; collect all new Lesbian Poet Trading Cards; 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:

Harper Lee’s iconic novel To Kill a Mockingbird is heading to Broadway for the first time. Producer Scott Rudin acquired the book rights for Broadway’s 2017–2018 season, and Oscar-winning screenwriter Aaron Sorkin will adapt the novel for the stage. (Newsweek)

At the Los Angeles Times, poet Ross Gay talks about his third collectionCatalog of Unabashed Gratitude—which is currently up for the Kingsley Tufts Poetry Award and for the National Book Critics Circle Award; choosing to embrace joy in the face of life’s difficulties; how gardening informs his writing; and the reception of his work on the page in contrast with his public performances.

In March, independent publisher Headmistress Press is releasing a third set of limited edition Lesbian Poets Trading Cards. Fiction writer and editor Kathleen Rooney explains why she’s looking forward to the release, as the cards literally “put a face on the absences that exist in many readers’ knowledge.” (Chicago Tribune)

Would you like a chance to coauthor a book with best-selling author James Patterson? MasterClass, an online learning platform, is hosting a contest for students who enroll in Patterson’s writing course to collaborate on the author’s next book. The deadline to submit is March 22, and Patterson will select the winner on March 24. (GalleyCat)

At the New Yorker, Adrian Van Young profiles fiction writer Brian Evenson, and examines how his upbringing in the Mormon Church—which he left sixteen years ago—influences his writing, which Van Young says is “equal parts obsessive, experimental, and violent.”

The St. Marks Bookshop in New York City, which was in danger of shuttering yesterday, has received a reprieve, which will allow the store to remain open until February 17. The owner hopes investors will save the store and turn it into a nonprofit. (Publishers Weekly)

Today through Sunday, February 14, the floating library sets sail on Los Angeles’s Echo Park Lake. Readers in the area can peruse books via paddleboat. The floating library project began in Minnesota, and this weekend’s edition is presented in conjunction with L.A.’s Art Book Fair. (Huffington Post)  

Ferrante On T.V., National Book Foundation Names New Executive Director, and More
Wed, 10 Feb 2016 17:07:45 +0000 -

Essential black memoirs; defending the role of the critic; Toni Morrison on evil and altruism; 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 National Book Foundation has named Lisa Lucas as its new executive director. Lucas succeeds Harold Augenbraum, who announced his decision to step down last year. Before joining the Foundation, Lucas served as publisher of Guernica, a nonprofit literary and art magazine with a political focus. “I am gratified to have this opportunity to lead such an important institution in support of books, writers and readers from all walks of life,” said Lucas, who will begin her appointment on March 14. Lucas is the third executive director in the Foundation’s history. The National Book Foundation presents the annual National Book Awards, and in recent years has launched new programming that supports the organization’s mission “to celebrate the best of American literature, to expand its audience, and to enhance the cultural value of great writing in America.”

Elena Ferrante’s best-selling Neapolitan series of novels are set to be adapted for television. The series will be shot in Italy, and Ferrante—who writes under a pseudonym—will be involved throughout the adaptation’s production. (Hollywood Reporter)

“In the current landscape, when Black life is so varied and complex, no memoir can stand as a singular representation of Black life, regardless of how compelling it might be. They stand in a tradition but the world is not the same.” Author and professor Imani Perry examines four memoirs by African American writers published in 2015: Ta-Nehisi Coates’s Between the World And Me, Margo Jefferson’s Negroland, Clifford Thompson’s Twin of Blackness, and Rosemary Freeney Harding and Rachel Harding’s Remants: A Memoir of Spirit, Activism and Mothering. (Public Books)

At Full Stop, first-generation Cuban fiction writer Jennine Capó Crucet discusses her debut novel, Make Your Home Among Strangers, and offers advice for first-generation college students. 

Novelist and Nobel laureate Toni Morrison considers the ways in which evil is “constant,” and easily picked up, and how she wants to work deeper understandings of altruism into her books. “I just think goodness is more interesting…. You have to be an adult to consciously, deliberately be good—and that’s complicated.” (Guardian)

New York Times film critic A. O. Scott—who began his career as a book reviewer—talks about his debut book, Better Living Through Criticism, as well as negative reviews, defending the critic’s role, and the importance of engaging intellectually with art. (Electric Literature)

“A translation will never be perfectly faithful to the original, but it contributes something else: It opens the work up to new readers.” Poet and translator Niina Pollari writes about her experience—and the challenges—of translating Finnish literature into English. (Catapult)

Thoreau the Magical Realist, Embracing Ambivalence, and More
Tue, 09 Feb 2016 17:34:37 +0000 -

Iraq war veterans on writing fiction; college students prefer print books to digital; racy Tagore translation pulled from Chinese stores; 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:

Henry David Thoreau’s work contains elements of magical realism: “Pine trees cry; fish become trees; men grow grass out of their brains,” yet his writings “require that we treat their content not as fiction but as truth, and their utterances not figuratively, but declaratively, as testimonies.” Scholar Branka Arsić considers how Thoreau’s grief over his brother’s death in 1842 led him to develop his views of nature in these strange, fantastic ways. (New Republic)

A study conducted by a research team at American University found that 92 percent of college students in the United States prefer reading print books to e-books. The survey findings are covered in linguistics professor Naomi S. Baron’s book Words Onscreen: The Fate of Reading in a Digital World, which is available now from Oxford University Press. (Los Angeles Times)

At Electric Literature, National Book Award–winning fiction writer and Iraq war veteran Phil Klay interviews Matt Gallagher—also an Iraq war veteran—about his debut novel, Youngblood; the challenges veterans face when returning home; and finding a sense of purpose through writing.

“If literature matters less to young people than it once did, we are all in trouble.” Author and critic David Denby considers the fate of our society if we lose serious readers to digital obsessions. (Literary Hub)

A Chinese translation of a collection by the Bengali poet and Nobel laureate Rabindranath Tagore, who died in 1941, has been pulled from stores in China. The collection, translated by Chinese writer Feng Tang, set off a “storm of criticism,” as many readers and scholars felt that Teng’s “racy” translation mocked Tagore’s original poetry. (New York Times)

In an interview at Omnivoracious, fiction and nonfiction writer Charles D’Ambrosio talks about his essay collection Loitering, the purpose of the essay, and embracing ambivalence in his writing.

Alexander Chee discusses the frustrating, yet ultimately satisfying fifteen-year process of publishing his second novel, The Queen of the Night, out now from Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. (Slate)

A Conversation With Poet Rita Dove, Vivian Gornick on Rereading, and More
Mon, 08 Feb 2016 17:48:19 +0000 -

St. Marks Bookshop may shutter soon; literary love quiz; young writers of color share their favorite poems; 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:

At the Virginia Quarterly Review, Pulitzer Prize–winning poet Rita Dove discusses the themes in her body of work, her approach to historical representation, and how she navigates her identities as a public poetry advocate and a private writer.

This month, Faber & Faber will publish a new volume of personal correspondence by T. S. Eliot that complicates the accusation that Eliot was unjustly cruel to his first wife, Vivien Haigh-Wood, during her mental suffering. In the letters, composed between 1932 and 1933, Eliot resolves to end his eighteen-year marriage with Haigh-Wood and move back to America, expressing both desperation and concern over his wife’s condition. The Letters of T. S. Eliot: Volume 6 will be released on February 18. (Guardian)

Rereading a book you loved when you were younger can be a surprising experience, in that you may discover how much you have misremembered from the first read. For writer and critic Vivian Gornick, rereading E. M. Forster’s 1910 novel Howards End decades later proves to be such an experience. “[I] have reread it only to find myself dismayed not only by how much I got wrong but by how much in the book is wrong—the sexual naïveté, the rhetorical posturing, the hand from the grave all read like hokum today—and yet how absorbing this novel of novels still is!” (New York Times)

The St. Mark’s Bookshop in New York City may close for good in a few days. The beloved independent bookstore, which opened in the East Village in 1977, has struggled with declining sales and rising rent for the past several years, its owners having been unable to pay off taxes and back rent. (Bedford and Bowery)

Valentine’s Day is approaching, so why not test your knowledge of classic literary love? (New York Times)

Award-winning British novelist Margaret Forster has died at age seventy-seven. Best known for her 1965 novel Georgy Girl, Forster composed more than twenty works of fiction during her lifetime. (ABC News)

At the Huffington Post, twenty young writers of color to share their favorite poems. Curator Tabia Alexine compiled the list in response to a New York Times list of public figures’ favorite poems, which she felt was compelling, “but not as diverse and intersectionally colorful as I’d hoped.”

What Hollywood Owes Writers, Epistolary Novels, and More
Fri, 05 Feb 2016 16:47:08 +0000 -

National Book Foundation launches program for LGBTQ teens; Tournament of Books brackets posted; Robert Lowell’s complicated relationships with women; 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:

At Deadline, Stephen King discusses his many film adaptations—his favorites and those he dislikes—and how much input writers deserve after they entrust Hollywood to turning their books into movies.

“Lowell nonetheless believed that women were his intellectual and artistic equals. He spent most of his life behaving accordingly even as he treated his wives and mistresses so terribly, in romantic terms, that it was almost operatic.” Writer Michelle Dean considers poet Robert Lowell’s often difficult and puzzling relationships with women, and in particular his second wife, the novelist Elizabeth Hardwick. (New Republic)

The National Book Foundation has partnered with Lambda Literary to launch a new program for LGBTQ teens called BookUp LGBTQ. The program will be held at New York City’s Hetrick-Martin Institute, and will provide activities and books curated for LGBTQ youth. Poet and Cave Canem fellow t’ai freedom ford will teach the program. (Shelf Awareness)

A letter sent from the Chinese police to the Hong Kong police on Thursday confirmed for the first time that three of the five Hong Kong booksellers who have been reported missing since last November are being investigated for “illegal activities.”  The three men worked at the Causeway Bay Bookshop in Hong Kong, but no specifics were given in the letter on the men’s alleged crimes. (Guardian)

“Do you want a book with that?” Fast food chain McDonald’s is offering children’s books instead of toys with its Happy Meals until February 15. The chain began distributing books with its Happy Meals in 2013, and will have given away more than fifty million books by the end of this year. (USA Today)

The brackets for the 2016 edition of the Morning News Tournament of Books are now posted and available for download. The opening round begins March 9, with Lauren Groff’s Fates and Furies up against Zachary Thomas Dodson’s Bats of the Republic.

If you decide not to actually communicate with another person this weekend (Hey, it’s okay!) you can relax and communicate vicariously by reading one of these epistolary novels, recommended by Paste.

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.