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Writers' News

London book fair cancelled over coronavirus fears, amid growing anger

theguardian.com – Wednesday March 4, 2020

One of the world’s biggest international literary events, the London book fair, has been cancelled over coronavirus fears, amid growing anger that the delay in calling it off was putting people’s health at risk and an unfair financial strain on publishers.

Organiser Reed Exhibitions announced on Wednesday that the escalation of the illness meant the fair, scheduled to run from 10 to 12 March, would be called off. Around 25,000 publishers, authors and agents from around the world had been due to attend the event, where deals for the hottest new books are struck.

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Abrams Artists Agency Rebrands as A3 Artists Agency

variety.com – Tuesday March 3, 2020

Abrams Artists Agency, a prominent talent and literary agency, has officially rebranded as A3 Artists Agency.

The name change, announced over the weekend at the company’s annual retreat, comes 18 months after Robert Attermann, Brian Cho, and Adam Bold acquired the agency,

“When we purchased the agency in 2018, we set out to be the premium brand we now are,” Bold said. “We said we’d have diversity, and we do. We’re not only promising to be something different; we are something different. We’ve hired top-tier agents from diverse backgrounds, we were the first agency to launch a digital studio, and we recently expanded internationally with an office in the UK.”

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American Publishers, Including Simon & Schuster, Pull Out Of The London Book Fair Amid Coronavirus Concerns

forbes.com – Sunday March 1, 2020

The London Book Fair is set to take place from March 10 until March 12. Due to growing fears of the spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus, however, an increasing number of publishers and other attendees are washing their hands of the matter.

Simon & Schuster, one of the five biggest publishing houses in the industry, is the first big name to pull out of the London event in a decision announced today.

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Crime Story 2020: Innovative crime writing festival turns spotlight on contemporary crime

newsroom.northumbria.ac.uk – Saturday February 29, 2020

A series of events for crime fiction fans will take place at Alphabetti Theatre, Newcastle this spring, bringing together people from the two very different worlds of fact and fiction.

Across the three events, celebrated writers AA Dhand, Oliver Harris, Jessica Moor, Judith O’Reilly and Mim Skinner will be paired with experts who will offer unique insight into how contemporary issues are dealt with in real life.

Experts taking part in Crime Story include three Northumbria University academics - ​Dr Nicci MacLeod, a forensic linguist, who has written on women in the criminal justice system; ​Professor Mike Rowe, a criminologist who specialises in policing culture and reforms; and​ Professor Lars Holmquist, an internationally-leading researcher in human-computer interaction.

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Publishers, Agents Scramble to Reschedule Bologna

publishersweekly.com – Wednesday February 26, 2020

The news on Monday that the Bologna Children’s Book Fair has been rescheduled to May 4–7 due to the spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus has left North American publishers and agents scrambling. Most are working to reschedule appointments, hoping that other attendees will agree to shift their existing appointments to the new dates.

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Here’s why you'll want to enter Filmarket Hub's Pilot Contest

filmdaily.co – Sunday February 16, 2020

Here at Film Daily, we’re all about supporting screenwriters. We also love a good screenwriting contest! That’s why we, along with our friends at online marketplace Filmarket Hub, are thrilled to announce the launch of their new screenwriting competition focused on English language TV pilots. 

The competition will be open until the 31st March 2020, after which the six semi-finalists, three finalists and the winning pilot will be announced throughout the month of June.

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Amazon-owned Audible and major publishers settle lawsuit over audiobook translation feature

geekwire.com – Monday February 10, 2020

Amazon-owned Audible and a group of major book publishers settled a copyright lawsuit filed last year over a feature called Captions that transcribes audiobooks to text.

The settlement between Audible and the seven publishers that sued the company last year — Hachette, HarperCollins, Macmillan, Penguin Random House, Simon & Schuster, Chronicle Books and Scholastic — is sealed. However, a proposed dismissal and injunction document filed last week says Audible is barred from “creating, generating, reproducing … written text derived from the audiobook versions of Publishers’ Works for any product or service created or offered by Audible,” unless it gets authorization first.

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Creative writing challenge for young people launched alongside UK Tour of ‘A Monster Calls'

aboutmanchester.co.uk – Monday February 3, 2020

A creative writing challenge has been launched alongside the UK Tour of A Monster Calls, based on the critically-acclaimed novel by Patrick Ness. The Monster Writing Challenge is a creative writing challenge seeking short stories inspired by the show and written by young people aged 10-25.

The challenge is open to individuals, school groups and community groups – anyone who has a story to tell. Each submission must be no more than 500 words and inspired by any of the themes that are present in A Monster Calls. These include family, grief, hidden emotions, truth, people are complicated, bereavement and friendship.

The deadline for submissions from those in the North West is Thursday 20 February ahead of the show’s run at The Lowry from Tue 25 – Sat 29 February.

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Mary Higgins Clark, 'Queen Of Suspense,' Dies At 92

npr.org – Sunday February 2, 2020

Bestselling author Mary Higgins Clark, known for page-turning thrillers that earned her the nickname the "Queen of Suspense," has died at 92.

Her publisher, Simon & Schuster, announced that Higgins Clark died of natural causes in Naples, Fla., on Friday, surrounded by loving family and friends.

Higgins Clark is survived by five children, including mystery novelist Carol Higgins Clark, six grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.

"Beginning in 1975 with the publication of Where Are The Children?, each of her 56 books has been a bestseller," Simon & Schuster President and CEO Carolyn K. Reidy said in a statement. "There are more than 100 million copies of her books in print in the United States."

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Prize for short form writers launched in tribute to Dave Murray

thebookseller.com – Friday January 31, 2020

An award for new and emerging short-form writers has been launched in memory of Manchester-based writer and critic Dave Murray.

The QuietManDave Prize will be run by the Manchester Writing School at Manchester Metropolitan University, in conjunction with the Manchester School of Theatre.

Named in honour of Murray, a writer and theatre blogger, and lover of flash fiction and non-fiction, who died in 2019, the prize has been initiated and funded by Murray’s family, including his wife Vanda Murray OBE, who is a senior non-executive director with several organisations and chair of Manchester Metropolitan’s board of governors.

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