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Writers' News

Strong year for Children's publishing as W H Smith unveils Books of the Year

thebookseller.com – Thursday November 14, 2019

W H Smith has unveiled its Books of the Year, with the retailer recognising two children's books for the first time.

In recognition of the "diverse choice across children’s publishing and the importance it plays in supporting literacy and engagement in young readers", W H Smith has chosen both bestselling rhyming read-aloud picture book Oi Puppies! (Hodder Children's Books) by Kes Gray and Jim Field, and the inclusive Izzy Gizmo and the Invention Convention (Simon & Schuster Children's UK) by Pip Jones and Sara Ogilvie as its Children's Books of the Year. 

Beth O'Leary's debut novel The Flatshare (Quercus), which has sold 15,362 copies through TCM, has been named Fiction Book of the Year. W H Smith said the "brilliant rom-com" story of Tiffy and Leon who share a flat but have never met is "one of the most uplifting debuts of 2019". 

[Read the full article]

One long sentence, 1,000 pages: Lucy Ellmann 'masterpiece' wins Goldsmiths prize

theguardian.com – Thursday November 14, 2019

Lucy Ellmann’s 1,000-page novel Ducks, Newburyport has won the £10,000 Goldsmiths prize for “fiction at its most novel”, praised by judges as a “masterpiece”.

Ducks, Newburyport is the stream-of-consciousness internal monologue of a mother in Ohio as she bakes pies in her kitchen. Made up of one long run-on sentence, with interludes from the perspective of a mountain lion, its ambitious form led to it being turned down by Ellmann’s previous publisher, Bloomsbury. It later found a home at independent press Galley Beggar and was shortlisted for this year’s Booker prize.

Chair of judges, Erica Wagner called the novel “that rare thing: a book which, not long after its publication, one can unhesitatingly call a masterpiece”.

[Read the full article]

Folio Lit Acquires Emma Sweeney Agency

publishersweekly.com – Thursday November 7, 2019

Folio Literary Management has acquired the Emma Sweeney Literary Agency (ESA), effective January 2, 2020. The latter, founded in 2006, represented such authors as Sara Gruen and Edgar Cantero.

In a release about the deal, Folio said authors at ESA have won a host of major literary awards, including the Nobel and the Pulitzer. And Gruen's 2006 novel, Water for Elephants, has Folio noted, sold over 10 million copies worldwide.

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CalArts’ Creative Writing MFA Program Is Seeking Applications for Fall 2020

hyperallergic.com – Thursday November 7, 2019

CalArts’ MFA Creative Writing Program—a two-year master’s degree dedicated to fostering the experimental impulse, is seeking applicants for Fall 2020.  A non-tracking program that allows students the freedom to study across genre and form, CalArts MFA Creative Writing Program is designed for writers who want to push beyond traditional boundaries and discover new modes of expression through language. With new faculty members Michael Leong and Anthony McCann, and exciting guests including the 2020 Katie Jacobson Writer in Residence, John Keene, there’s never been a better time to apply.

Centered in the storied creative laboratory that is CalArts—an electric community of boundary-pushing visual and performing artists—the program’s rigorous courses can be supplemented by enriching electives from across the institute. CalArts incredible faculty, stellar reading series, and genre-busting literary magazine, SubLevel, afford our students the opportunity to work and study with some of the most exciting writers publishing today. Postgraduate professional development opportunities such as teaching fellowships, and artist residencies, gird our graduates for the demands of life as a working writer.

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BookLife Launches Paid Review Service for Self-Pubbed Books

publishersweekly.com – Wednesday October 30, 2019

BookLife, Publishers Weekly's website and monthly supplement dedicated to self-publishing, has launched BookLife Reviews, a paid reviews service open exclusively to self-published authors.

BookLife Reviews will be written by Publishers Weekly reviewers, but remain distinct from Publishers Weekly reviews. The service is designed to help self-published authors reach readers by providing them with credible and reliable assessments of their work from reviewers with expertise in their genres and styles.

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UEA to mark 50 years of creative writing MA with international programme

thebookseller.com – Wednesday October 30, 2019

The University of East Anglia is marking 50 years of its pioneering creative writing MA with a programme of events including a new international chair of creative writing position occupied in turn by five prominent writers from around the world.

Founded by Malcolm Bradbury and Angus Wilson in 1970, the course was the first of its kind in the UK and counted Ian McEwan as its debut student. UEA will now mark the anniversary with a national and international programme of events, activities and initiatives to run across the 2020/2021 academic year.

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Literary Magazine 'Bad Nudes' Releases Its First Anthology

thelinknewspaper.ca – Monday October 28, 2019

Bad Books, the sister press of the quarterly literary magazine Bad Nudes, just released the publication’s first anthology.

But no, these are not your typical nudes. Since 2016, Bad Nudes “has been pairing dynamic and innovative writing with boundary-pushing design.”

Avid Bad Nudes readers will be able to revisit writers who particularly made a mark on the magazine. The anthology features new poetry and prose by authors whose contributions made a significant mark at the publication. It was designed and laid out by Sandy Spink.

The anthology, launched on Oct. 20, will be Bad Nudes‘s first print exclusive.

Fawn Parker, co-founder and poetry editor, feels that the anthology gives the magazine a chance to publish its milestones.

[Read the full article]

Hera Books, Beaumont and O’Donoghue shortlisted for RNA awards

thebookseller.com – Tuesday October 22, 2019

Hera Books founders Keshini Naidoo and Lindsay Mooney, agent Diana Beaumont and Promising Young Women author Caroline O’Donoghue are some of the professionals who have made the shortlists for the Romantic Novelists’ Association's annual Industry Awards for 2019.

The RNA Industry Awards are voted on by its membership to recognise and to celebrate the variety of professionals whose work goes into supporting and promoting the genre of romantic fiction.

[Read the full article]

Karl Ove Knausgaard's latest work to remain unseen until 2114

theguardian.com – Sunday October 20, 2019

Karl Ove Knausgaard, who detailed the minutiae of his own life in the six-volume autobiographical novel My Struggle, has taken on a new challenge: the Norwegian writer is to become the sixth contributor to the Future Library, which collects works by contemporary authors that will remain unread until 2114.

The Future Library is described as a “living, breathing, organic artwork, unfolding over 100 years” by its creator, the Scottish artist Katie Paterson. It currently consists of 1,000 spruce trees that were planted in Oslo’s Nordmarka forest in 2014. After a century, they will be cut down and turned into paper. On this, the manuscripts by participating authors including Margaret Atwood, David Mitchell and Elif Shafak, will finally be printed.

Knausgaard is the first Norwegian writer to contribute to the project; Paterson called him “one of the most exceptional authors of the 21st century”.

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Stephen King's mansion in the town that influenced It to host writing retreats

independent.co.uk – Friday October 18, 2019

Stephen King's home in Bagnor, Maine is being turned into a writer's retreat after the author and his wife, Tabitha, were granted permission to rezone the mansion as a non-profit. 

The building will now become an archive of King's work, where visits will be possible by appointment, and host up to five writers at a time. The family are unlikely to be home while the writers' residencies are ongoing. 

City councillor Ben Sprague told Rolling Stone"The King family has been wonderful to the city of Bangor over time and have donated literally millions of dollars to various causes in the community.

[Read the full article]

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