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A curated selection of videos, including book trailers, brief interviews, and other literary curiosities updated daily.
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Commissioned as part of the City of Melbourne Laneway Commission 2010, Public Writing is a dual-screen digital animation of a readymade sculpture combining a typewriter and the wing and tail plumage of a Yellow Crested Cockatoo. This hybrid writing machine produces text as cutup and concrete poetry.
Rebecca McClanahan's poem, which was published in River Teeth: A Journal of Nonfiction Narrative, will resonate with anyone in Boston later this week for the annual AWP conference and book fair. "Annual Conference: 8,000 Writers Expected" is read by the poet and visualized by Donald Devet.
"Man is a mass of electrified clay!" Percy Shelley wrote a couple hundred years ago. Frances Ashcroft and Denis Noble, professors at the University of Oxford, discuss the science of how ions transmit electricity through the body as well as the more poetic aspects of electricity, including Michelangelo's Creation of Adam, Mary Shelley's inspiration for Frakenstein, and more.
For your weekend viewing pleasure we present this 1963 documentary Ray Bradbury: Story of a Writer, produced and directed by Terry Sanders, in which the late science fiction author (who was forty-three when the film was made) shares his thoughts on writing and perseverance: "You've got to be inspired and mad and excited and love it more than anything else in the world!"
The Unchangeable Spots of Leopards, Kristopher Jansma's debut novel, forthcoming in March from Viking, takes readers around the world—to the rocky edge of the Grand Canyon, the posh hotels of Dubai, the crowded markets of Kumasi, and an abandoned Icelandic writer’s colony—with its elusive narrator and his two friends: the talented but unstable Julian McGann and the beautiful actress, Evelyn Demont.
Blessing the Boats: A Tribute to Lucille Clifton, a celebration of the late poet's life and work on the occasion of the posthumous publication of her Collected Poems by BOA Editions, was held on February 21 and featured readings by poets Sherman Alexie, Tina Chang, Toi Derricotte, Michael Dickman, Timothy Donnelly, Cornelius Eady, Thomas Sayers Ellis, Nick Flynn, Tonya Foster, Rachel Eliza Griffiths, Marie Howe, Dante Micheaux, Sharon Olds, and Tracy K. Smith.
Last month poet Martín Espada spoke with Bill Moyers about how poets "reach out and put our hands on the intangible". A one-time lawyer and advocate, Espada has published more than fifteen books of poems, translations, and essays, including his latest poetry collection, The Trouble Ball (Norton, 2011).