• May 31, 2019

    Hulu orders "Normal People" series; Nicole Dennis-Benn on representation in fiction

    Anna North is working on a Western. Outlawed, “a feminist Western following a young midwife through her initiation into the notorious Hole in the Wall Gang and their dangerous mission to transform the Wild West,” will be published by Bloomsbury in 2021.

    Hulu has ordered a series based on Sally Rooney’s Normal People. The twelve-episode series will be written by Rooney along with Alice Birch and Mark O’Rowe, and will be directed by Lenny Abrahamson and Hettie MacDonald. Filming begins next week, and the series will air next year.

    Vox’s Dara Lind is joining ProPublica’s DC newsroom as an

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  • May 30, 2019

    Ibram X. Kendi on being antiracist; Moby cancels book tour

    At the New York Times, Ibram X. Kendi explains what it means to be antiracist and offers a reading list to assist with that workl. “To build a nation of equal opportunity for everyone, we need to dismantle this spurious legacy of our common upbringing. One of the best ways to do this is by reading books,” he writes. “Not books that reinforce old ideas about who we think we are, what we think America is, what we think racism is. Instead, we need to read books that are difficult or unorthodox, that don’t go down easily. Books that force us to confront our self-serving beliefs and make us aware

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  • Tony Horwitz
    May 29, 2019

    Journalist Tony Horwitz has died; A sneak peek at Michael Wolff's "Siege: Trump Under Fire"

    Tony Horwitz, a Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter and book author who immersed himself deeply in his subjects (slaughterhouses, the sea travels of explorer Captain James Cook, the culture of Civil War reenactments), died yesterday in Washington, DC. In a review of Horwitz’s new book, Spying on the South, Tom Carson writes of Horwitz’s work: “Not many writers mix up geniality and astuteness as enjoyably as Tony Horwitz does. He’s got a rare knack for spotting topics whose eccentricity lets him juxtapose the baleful past and the cuckoo present in arresting, provocative, hugely entertaining ways.”

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  • Binyavanga Wainaina
    May 28, 2019

    Binyavanga Wainaina has died at age 48; Naomi Wolf gets fact-checked live on the BBC

    The Kenyan author and gay rights activist Binyavanga Wainaina has died. Wainaina is the author of Someday I Will Write about This Place, and made international news in 2014 when he responded to a wave of anti-gay laws in African countries by publicly outing himself in a short essay.

    On Thursday last week, Naomi Wolf went on BBC Radio to discuss her book Outrages: Sex, Censorship, and the Criminalization of Love, which is due to be published on June 18. The book’s premise hinges on a nineteenth-century English legal term, “death recorded.” Wolf took the term to mean a “death sentence.” But

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  • May 23, 2019

    Ryan Chapman on dark places in fiction; Eve Ensler on James Baldwin

    The Guardian is launching an investigative series called “Toxic America,” Digiday reports. Through the series, which will “explore the public health implications of all the chemicals that have crept into American food, air and water,” the paper hopes to increase American readership and donations.

    Esquire editor in chief Jay Fielden is leaving the magazine.

    “I think that’s one of the great things about fiction and the first-person voice is that, unlike a film or a painting or music, people will go with you to incredibly transgressive and dark paces and laugh at things that would never laugh

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  • May 23, 2019

    ACLU challenging ban of Paul Butler's "Chokehold"; Hilary Mantel announces final Thomas Cromwell novel

    The American Civil Liberties Union and Paul Butler are challenging Arizona’s decision to ban Butler’s book, Chokehold: Policing Black Men from the state’s prison system. The group plans to file a lawsuit if the decision is not reversed. “There’s nothing about ‘Chokehold’ that threatens day-to-day safety of inmates or jailers,” Butler told the New York Times. “‘Chokehold’ is all about threatening the institution of prison. . . . I found the ban somewhat ironic . . . because it’s kind of supporting the thesis.”

    The final book of Hilary Mantel’s Thomas Cromwell trilogy will be published next

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  • May 22, 2019

    Jokha Alharthi wins Man Booker International Prize; Susan Rice to publish memoir

    Former National Security Advisor and U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice is writing a memoir. Tough Love: My Story of the Things Worth Fighting For, which covers everything from Rice’s childhood to “national security challenges,” will be published by Simon & Schuster in October.

    The 2019 Man Booker International Prize has been awarded to Jokha Alharthi’s novel Celestial Bodies, which was translated by Marilyn Booth.

    Literary Hub’s Emily Temple rounds up writing advice from Nora Ephron.

    In an excerpt from her new book The Dark Fantastic, Ebony Elizabeth Thomas reflects on reading fantasy and speculative

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  • Raymond Antrobus. Photo: Adam Docker
    May 21, 2019

    Raymond Antrobus wins Rathbones Folio Prize; Lisa Lucas on Robert Caro

    Raymond Antrobus has won the Rathbones Folio Prize for his poetry collection, The Perseverance. Antrobus is the first poet to win the prize.

    Digiday looks at the sale of Salon Media Group to Proper Media owners Chris Richmond and Drew Schoentrup. The pair “see an easy path toward profits” that doesn’t require cutting editorial staff.

    Now that HBO’s Game of Thrones has ended, Literary Hub and The Guardian both offer lists of fantasy series “to fill the dragon-shaped hole in your life.”

    On Will Schwalbe’s But That’s Another Story podcast, Lisa Lucas discusses Robert Caro, Robert Moses, and

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  • May 20, 2019

    Jeanette Winterson’s Modern-Day "Frankenstein"; Herman Wouk (1915–2019)

    Herman Wouk, the author of numerous bestsellers, including the World War II epic War and Remembrance, has died at the age fo 103. Jeanette Winterson talks about Frankissstein, which revisits the industrial revolution of Mary Shelley classic’s classic and pulls us back into the present of “artificial intelligence, sexbots, and cryogenics.” The technology of the future “could be lovely,” Winterson says. “But it’s not going to be, because we are human so we will fuck it up!”

    At LitHub, Alexis Gunderson writes about a “new generation of villainous women” in fiction. “Just as #MeToo and Time’s Up

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  • Weike Wang. Photo: Saavedra Photography
    May 17, 2019

    O. Henry Prize winners announced; Dani Shapiro on writing through trauma

    At Literary Hub, Michele Filgate talks to Inheritance author Dani Shapiro about structure, trauma, and memoir writing. “I don’t think you can write prose from the place of trauma. I think poets can do that, I think that’s what poets do,” she said. “If you think about any moment in your life that has been traumatic, for any of us, what do we do, we tell the story again and again and we tell it the same way because we are trying to digest it, we are trying to make sense of it, we are trying to get ahold of it. And I recognize that, but it doesn’t make good literature.”

    The winners of the 100th

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  • Jessica Valenti
    May 16, 2019

    Michael Wolff announces new book about Trump administration; Guy Gavriel Kay on his allergy to writing advice

    Fire and Fury author Michael Wolff is writing a new book about the Trump administration. Siege: Trump Under Fire will be published by Henry Holt on June 4 and focuses “on tensions amid the special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into alleged ties between Russian officials and the Trump presidential campaign.”

    Salon Media Group is hoping to sell the website for $5 million, the New York Post reports. However, the company noted that “there can be no guarantee that the asset sale will be completed and, if not completed, we may have to file for bankruptcy and liquidation.” 

    Nieman Lab’s

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  • Tayari Jones. Photo: Nina Subin.
    May 15, 2019

    Tayari Jones's "Silver Sparrow" optioned by Issa Rae; Taffy Brodesser-Akner on "The Rules"

    George RR Martin denied rumors that “he has secretly finished the final two books” of his series. After Game of Thrones actor Ian McElhinney told an EPIC Con audience that the sixth and seventh books had already been written, Martin responded, “Why would I sit for years on completed novels? . . . They make millions and millions of dollars every time a new Ice & Fire book comes out, as do I. Delaying makes no sense.”

    An American Marriage author Tayari Jones’s 2011 novel, Silver Sparrow, has been optioned by Issa Rae.

    In honor of the forty-fifth anniversary of Graywolf Press, Literary Hub’s

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