The Guardian Archive

Round-Up: NEW YORKER Poem Controversy, PEN/Faulkner Award, and Rare Shakespeare First Folio

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From a New Yorker poem sparking widespread criticism to a newly discovered First Folio, here’s what went on last week in literary news: Controversy arose last week around a poem by Calvin Trillin published in The New Yorker. The poem, titled “Have They Run Out of Provinces Yet?”, sparked criticism from

Round-Up: Harper Lee, Children’s Book Controversy, and #1000BlackGirlBooks Update

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From the loss of the beloved author Harper Lee to an author’s response to Scholastic’s withdrawal of his book, here’s what’s new this week in literature:   Harper Lee, author of the Pulitzer Prize winning novel To Kill a Mockingbird, died last Friday at the age of 89. To

Round-Down: McDonald’s Happy Readers Initiative Fated for Great Success

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  Roald Dahl’s estate, the National Literacy Trust, and McDonald’s have teamed up in a smart, new installment of the fast food franchise’s recent UK literacy initiative, Happy Readers. Fourteen-million Roald Dahl books have been created specifically for the project, featuring excerpts from some of the author’s classics, and will

Round-Down: On Women Writers And the Fallout from ‘Confession’ in the Digital Age

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Social media is in the spotlight—or crosshairs, as it may be–in the literary landscape this week. Several articles and author interviews have touched upon both the benefits and the tremendous costs known to an author maintaining their online presence, none of them coming to a firm conclusion about whether it’s better to be

Round-Down: What You Should Know Going Into GO SET A WATCHMAN

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Today, July 14, is an auspicious day in literary news: Harper Lee’s much anticipated, and controversial, Go Set A Watchman is officially released across the world. An event for the record books–the title already broke the pre-order record held by the Harry Potter series and promises to break still

The Ploughshares Round Down: 10 Times in Life When Writers Have the Upper Hand

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I’ve interviewed a lot of entry level job candidates. I’ve had plenty of recent college graduates sent to a conference room to meet me with a strong thumbs-up from Human Resources. Bright, well-dressed, great resumes, and eager. This impresses the HR types. However, when I’d ask questions, especially follow-up

The Ploughshares Round-Down: Why Learning To Write Plot Matters

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A few years ago, my cousin was just about to graduate from a small state school with an English degree. He told me he wanted to be a writer. I had never read any of his writing, so I was unbelievably discouraging. Try a job in the real world,

The Ploughshares Round-Down: Is It True You Can’t Make Any Money Writing Books?

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When I was making the switch last year from being an editor to being an agent, I heard from older agents that I was making a huge mistake. Advances are shrinking, they said. Midlist authors are going without contracts, and everybody is self-publishing. The whole industry is falling apart!