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Steve Jobs's Literary Legacy, Murakami Banned in New Jersey, and More

Daily News

Online Only, posted 8.25.11

Every day Poets & Writers Magazine scans the headlines—from publishing reports to academic announcements to literary dispatches—for all the news that creative writers need to know. Here are today's stories:

Steve Jobs's Apple sparked a desktop-publishing revolution in the 1980s that forever altered the literary landscape. In a short span of years, the number of American small presses and independent publishers grew from the hundreds to the tens of thousands. Of course, that was only the first wave. More recently, a slew of Jobs's creations radically changed the music industry, film, television, and how many people read literature. Yesterday, due to declining health, Jobs resigned as CEO of Apple (Wall Street Journal), and a bevy of writers at the New Yorker offer their thoughts on the enigmatic inventor, with comparisons to Thomas Edison.

Following the actions of schools in Missouri and Virginia, a New Jersey high school district has yanked Haruki Murakami's celebrated novel Norwegian Wood from a reading list after parents protested its inclusion (Guardian). Today, Murakami's American publisher, Knopf, delivered a public response.

Meanwhile, Banned Books Week is scheduled for September, and GalleyCat has more on how booksellers can fight censorship.

Visiting the United Kingdom for the Edinburgh International Book Festival, This Boy's Life author Tobias Wolfe speaks with the Guardian about the great writers who inspired him, including Hemingway. "He's such a dominant figure in American literature; you can't ignore him. He's papa, the great father, and you find that you either have to revere him or kill him."

Books-a-Million has agreed to purchase the leases of fourteen former Borders bookstores. (Bloomberg)

Poetry, a film from Korean director Lee Chang-don—available free to watch online—won the Best Screenplay award at the Cannes Film Festival. Structured like a detective story, the central character, Yang Mija (played by Yoon Jeong-hee), diagnosed with Alzheimer's, attempts to fit together the loose pieces of her life. The story centers around a class Yang Mija attends to learn how to write poetry and help sharpen her memory. (Fandor)

Recent Nielsen survey data indicates tablet and e-reader ownership is increasing among women over fifty-five. (All Things D)

Tana Wojczuk, a writer for the Rumpus, refuses to read any of Jack Kerouac's fiction and discovers this ensures she's surrounded with the mythology of the founder of the Beat Generation.

A newly released book, The Bugaboo Review, offers a corrective to common grammar mistakes, illustrated by insects. (Make that illustrated with—the insects didn't actually sketch anything.) (Huffington Post)

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