Posts filtered by tags: Words[x]


How Miami Became A Book Town

Mitchell Kaplan founded Books & Books in 1982, a time when Miami was seen as a place of drug running, diet culture, and political unrest – and certainly not literary culture. But, well, “thirty-seven years, an international book fair and eight additional locations later, Kaplan is celebrated as the man who turned Miami into a book town, and one of the foremost literary centers in the world.” – The New York Times
Tags: WORDS, 03.22.19

We Need To Talk About The Author Of ‘The Yellow Wallpaper’

Charlotte Perkins Gilman has become a go-to feminist author with her clear, understandable, and terrifying short story, “The Yellow Wallpaper,” forgotten after her death but rediscovered in the 1970s. But she wrote a lot of nonfiction as well. In that writing, “she accused non-white immigrants of ‘diluting’ the racial purity of America and advocated for a government-run, slavery-adjacent system of forced labor, which she called ‘enlistment,’ for black Americans.” – LitHub
Tags: WORDS, 03.21.19

Here, Meet The Whiting Award Winners

What’s the Whiting Award – and who are these people? (It’s a $50,000 award for early-career writers, so no surprise you don’t know most of them yet.) – NPR
Tags: WORDS, 03.20.19

Writing Isn’t Therapy

And writing about trauma doesn’t bestow some kind of catharsis on authors, or so says T. Kira Madden, author of Long Live the Tribe of Fatherless Girls. “My love for magic, still, is all about mechanics. Construction. Physics. My knowledge of how tricks are done does not deaden the awe and admiration I feel—it deepens it. Sometimes I work hard for that knowledge.” – LitHub
Tags: WORDS, 03.22.19

Chaucer Was A Remainer — A Poet Of Europe, Not Just England

“Chaucer was able to transform English poetry the way he did precisely because of his internationalism, not his nationalism. Like all educated men of his day, he was multilingual. He devoured late-antique philosophy, Latin translations of Arabic scientific treatises, and French love poems. His unusually good knowledge of Italian – and his travels to Italy – allowed him to access the latest poetry of Dante, Boccaccio and Petrarch. Indeed, Chaucer’s very fascination with vernacularity was a Europ...
Tags: WORDS, 03.22.19

In A Country With Few Public Libraries, Ordinary Citizens Create Their Own

There’s the tuk-tuk bookmobile toodling around Jakarta schools. “There is the Perahu Pustaka, a library boat that sails around West Sulawesi. There are libraries on the back of vegetable carts, shelves lugged around by horses in Serang and in West Papua. Across Banten, a 200-strong motorbike gang called the Komunitas Motor Literasi (Moli), brings books to homes from a box attached to their vehicles, delivered with the ease of a takeaway.” – The Guardian
Tags: AUDIENCE, WORDS, 03.19.19

Get Out The Pitchforks! What’s The Difference Between Criticism And Intimidating Work Out Of The Market?

“When it comes to Young Adult literature, what, precisely, is the difference between the marketplace of ideas and a Twitter mob? A group of unpaid readers—one with an undeniable personal investment in the Y.A. community—seems to be doing much of the work of critique that is usually first the task of agents and editors, and then that of booksellers and critics. But, when these particular readers do that work, they are derided as pitchfork-wielding hysterics.” – The New Yorker
Tags: Art, Words, Audience, 03.21.19

It’s Official: André Aciman’s Sequel To ‘Call Me By Your Name’ Will Hit Shelves This Fall

Says a statement from Farrar, Straus and Giroux, “In Find Me, Aciman shows us Elio’s father Samuel, now divorced, on a trip from Florence to Rome to visit Elio, who has become a gifted classical pianist. A chance encounter on the train leads to a relationship that changes Sami’s life definitively. Elio soon moves to Paris where he too has a consequential affair, while Oliver, now a professor in northern New England with sons who are nearly grown, suddenly finds himself contemplating a return vi...
Tags: Art, Rome, Paris, Words, Florence, New England, Oliver, Samuel, Sami, Elio, Farrar Straus, André Aciman, Aciman, 03.21.19

Post-Apocalyptic Sci-Fi Can Be, In A Way, Utopian

“The apocalypse can facilitate a different kind of social world,” says scholar Caroline Edwards. “That might seem horrifying to the protagonists, but the writer is posing a serious question: might this new world be better?” Sumit Paul-Choudhury digs into this idea. – BBC
Tags: Art, Words, Caroline Edwards, 03.18.19, Sumit Paul Choudhury

NY’s Antiquarian Book Fair: A Marketplace Of Fascinating Stories

For people with modest bank accounts, a tour of the fair amounts to a trip to an exhibit or museum, with dealers happily telling the often fascinating stories behind their wares, even if a potential sale is nowhere in sight. The 59th edition of the fair took place March 7 to 10 at the Park Avenue Armory. – The New York Times
Tags: Art, Words, 03.17.19

The Hard-Working Little Publisher Keeping Local History Books Alive

“Arcadia’s business turns the traditional publishing model on its head. Big New York publishers are looking for the next blockbuster to sell 2 million copies across the English-speaking world in a month. Arcadia wants to find a book that will sell 1,000 copies this year in, say, McMullen Valley, Ariz.” Says the company’s CEO, “The books are completely evergreen. Once you publish them, they sell forever. So even though the initial numbers are modest, you’re creating a kind of annuity.” – The Was...
Tags: Art, Words, Arcadia, Audience, 03.18.19, Big New York, McMullen Valley Ariz

Novelist Writes New Narnia Book With Out C.S. Lewis Estate’s Permission

Francis Spufford, who won a Costa Book Award and an Ondaatje Prize for his 2016 book Golden Hill, has spent 3½ years working on a Narnia prequel he’s titled The Stone Table. “After finishing the novel, Spufford made a ‘tentative’ approach to ask the Lewis estate if they might agree to publication, but did not receive a reply. Eventually he printed up 75 copies and started giving them to friends” — who are praising it to the skies. – The Guardian
Tags: Art, Words, Lewis, Golden Hill, Francis Spufford, Spufford, 03.19.19

How The Internet Is Changing How We Preserve Endangered Languages

Across the world, language revitalization movements are attempting to reverse language loss. While levels of institutional support and overall strategies differ, the goal is the same. Language is more than a way to communicate basic information, it expresses culture and identity: it’s used to explain the surrounding world, to sing songs, to worship, and to pass on stories. Languages are a link that bond people in a community to each another and to their shared past. – The Outline
Tags: Art, Words, 03.14.19

Against The Bad Sex In Fiction Awards

Catherine Brown: “At the risk of taking too-seriously an award of which the keynote is not seriousness, there are several problems involved in this that are worth considering. One is the implicit hypocrisy that the award has brought great publicity to its parent magazine because of the very fact – which the award ostensibly disparages – that sex sells.” – IAI News
Tags: Art, Words, Catherine Brown, 03.15.19

Was Shakespeare Really Queer? The Sonnets Are Pretty Clear

Sandra Newman looks at the 126 Shakespeare sonnets (out of a total of 154) addressed to the Fair Youth, at other sonnets and love poetry of the time and place, and at what Shakespeare’s contemporaries said and wrote about male-male sex and love (especially in the theatre). Then she applies Occam’s Razor. – Aeon
Tags: Art, People, Words, Shakespeare, Occam, Sandra Newman, 03.18.19

When Culture Is At The End Of An Algorithm, We Lose The Juice Of Engaging With It

Christian Lorentzen: “The new books coverage is more like litter. Endless lists of recommendations blight the landscape with superlatives that are hard to believe, especially, as is inevitable, when they aren’t drawn from the work of critics but compiled by poorly paid writers who haven’t read the books they’re recommending, a standard practice in preview lists. Proliferating recommendations become what Elizabeth Hardwick called ‘a hidden dissuader, gently, blandly, respectfully denying whateve...
Tags: Art, Words, Harper, Elizabeth Hardwick, Audience, Christian Lorentzen, April 2019

After A Magazine Exposé, Amazon Pulls Books Touting Dangerous ‘Cures’ For Autism

Yes, even in 2019, a magazine article – in this case, in Wired – can make a difference. For instance, “Kerry Rivera’s Healing the Symptoms Known As Autism, which advocates dosing autistic children with a bleach-like substance, chlorine dioxide, was no longer available from the online giant.” – The Guardian (UK)
Tags: Art, Words, 03.14.19, Kerry Rivera

The Museum-Like Quality Of New York’s Antiquarian Book Fair

To be real, many book-lovers can’t afford the books, or even the ephemera, at the Antiquarian Book Fair. But hey, information wants to be free, right? That seems to be true at the fair, with “dealers happily telling the often fascinating stories behind their wares, even if a potential sale is nowhere in sight.” – The New York Times
Tags: Art, New York, Words, 03.17.19

The Booker Prize-Winner Who Underwent An Exorcism

Marlon James knew he was gay from a young age, but he believed he shouldn’t be, so he underwent an exorcism through his church. “He describes the exorcism process as ‘a kind of mental control’: ‘Back then I thought they were just driving out demons,’ he recalls. James said he was sick multiple times during the ‘cure’: ‘Then one day it hit me: ‘What if I got rid of the church?’ And that worked smashingly.'” – The Observer (UK)
Tags: Art, Words, James, Marlon James, 03.17.19

This Presidential Candidate Liked An Author, So He Learned Norwegian In Order To Read The Untranslated Books

Go read the entire (short) story that the booksternet (Liternet?) is flipping out about. – Twitter
Tags: Art, Words, 03.16.19

At The London Book Fair, Publishers Salivate Over True Crime

Why is true crime so hot right now? Ask an agent: “I suspect the true-crime podcast thing is driving the current interest.” – The Guardian (UK)
Tags: Art, Words, 03.16.19

A Friend Asked This Baltimore Sun Reporter To Try Being A Private Eye. She Became A Bestselling Crime Novelist Instead

“In this extended interview, [Laura] Lippman discusses her transition from reporter to writer of such novels as What the Dead Know and Sunburn, how women over 60 make the best spies, and why she’s rooting for the decline of dead-girl fiction.” (watch animated version here) – Topic
Tags: Art, Words, Baltimore, 03.19, Laura -RSB- Lippman

The International Campaign To Rebuild And Restock The Mosul University Library

With well over half a million books in Arabic and more than one million antique maps, documents, and other materials (including a 9th-century Quran), the library was one of the most important in the Middle East — until ISIS began its destruction while it occupied the city (2014-17). Now the NGO Book Aid International and a project called the Mosul Book Bridge are gradually undoing the damage. – Publishing Perspectives
Tags: Art, Isis, Middle East, Words, 03.13.19, Mosul University Library, NGO Book Aid International

Books Need Readers To Be Books. But What About The Quality Of The Reader?

To exist as a book, the pages with their letters and spaces need a reader. We may think of books as unchanging material objects, but they only, as it were, happen when read; they have no absolute identity. And the nature of that reading—an experience extended over many hours, then mulled over for many more, for the book does not cease to happen the moment we turn the last page—will depend, to a large degree, on who the reader is. – New York Review of Books
Tags: Art, Words, Audience, 03.12.19

Has Literary Criticism Become Too “Nice.” Too Apolitical?

“Criticism” in The New York Times Book Review tends to look “positive,” by academic standards, not because it always says the book is good but because it offers market advice as to whether you should buy it, whether you will like it, without asking much about the market itself or about what it would mean about you or about the world if you did like it. – Chronicle of Higher Education
Tags: Art, Words, New York Times Book Review, 03.12.19

The 25 Top-Earning Authors Of The Past Ten Years

The top name on the list pulled in $290 million more than the runner-up, who in turn grossed just over twice as much as number three. The takeaway? “Franchises make money, and so do adaptations, but if you want to be a literary millionaire, you really have to write a) for children or b) a mystery (or romance) that strikes fear (or lust) in the hearts of the world.” (But isn’t there anyone writing in Chinese, Spanish, or Hindi who’s sold enough books to qualify?) – Literary Hub
Tags: Art, Words, 03.13.19

‘I’m Not A Gay Writer, I’m A Monster. Gay Writers Are Too Conservative.’ Are American Readers Finally Ready For James Purdy?

“Despite praise in his lifetime from Langston Hughes, Susan Sontag, Edward Albee, Gore Vidal, as well as – in later years – John Waters and Jonathan Franzen, Purdy … cast out by the US literary establishment,” which wasn’t ready for either his experimental style or his outré subject matter. (Nelson Algren called one of Purdy’s books “a fifth-rate avant-garde soap opera [about] prayer and faggotry.”) And Purdy’s delight in burning bridges didn’t help. – The Guardian
Tags: Art, US, Words, John Waters, Purdy, Nelson Algren, James Purdy, 03.11.19, Jonathan Franzen Purdy

A Gaggle Of Geese, A Pride Of Lions. A ??? of Emojis?

In written English right now, there’s little consensus on this question. National publications have not settled on a regular style. The Atlantic, for instance, used both (emoji, emojis) in the last quarter of 2015.  – The Atlantic
Tags: Art, Atlantic, Words, Emojis, 03.12.19

Now You Can Listen To T.S. Eliot Read, And Talk About, His Poetry

“On December 4, 1950, two years after winning the Nobel Prize in Literature, T.S. Eliot stood behind a lectern in the Kaufmann Concert Hall at the 92nd Street Y and read some of his best work in front of hundreds of people.” The director of the Y’s Unterberg Poetry Center and the poet Billy Collins recently came across audio of that event, and they’ve offered excerpts for streaming. – The New York Times
Tags: Art, Words, Eliot, Billy Collins, Kaufmann Concert Hall, Unterberg Poetry Center, 03.11.19

Why English Won’t Be Replaced As The World’s Lingua Franca Anytime Soon

The reason is inertia, basically: “[English] got there first, and there is no major expansion of globalization to shift the balance to another language. Today there are far more non-native English speakers than native speakers, and this means that English isn’t about the USA or the UK, but instead about its international use across cultures.” – Quartz (Quora)
Tags: Art, Usa, UK, World, Words, Lingua Franca, 03.07.19