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A curated selection of videos, including book trailers, brief interviews, and other literary curiosities updated daily.
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"I ended up being the one that fell through the cracks," says poet, novelist, and journalist Luis J. Rodriguez, whose memoir Always Running: La Vida Loca, Gang Days in L.A. (Curbstone Press, 1993) elevated him as a major figure in contemporary Chicano literature. In this video from Open Road Media, Rodriguez tells his story and explains how books helped him escape a dangerous life on the streets of Los Angeles.
There's nothing understated about this one. Check out Rebecca Migdal's trailer for Andrew Laties's Rebel Bookseller: Why Indie Bookstores Represent Everything You Want to Fight for, From Free Speech to Buying Local to Building Communities (Seven Stories Press, 2011), which pits an online retail giant against a chain bookstore monster (who kidnaps Emily Dickinson)! Can the Rebel Bookseller save the day and bring back a community of books?
For lovers of Irish literature, and the work of James Joyce in particular, June 16 is a special day. Bloomsday is a celebration of the life of the Irish author on the day in which the events of his novel Ulysses (which stars Leopold Bloom, hence the name) is set. To commemorate the thirtieth annual observance, we present Adam Harvey's performance of pages 193 to 195 of Finnegans Wake.
While essentially a promo for the largest general-interest trade book publisher in the world, this clip does offer a valuable look at the jobs of a few of the many people who work at Random House, from editorial and design through production, marketing, sales, and distribution.
The author, who died on Wednesday at the age of ninety-one, is seen here in a 2009 conversation with Lawrence Bridges about his best-known work, the novel Fahrenheit 451. President Barack Obama noted yesterday that Bradbury's "gift for storytelling reshaped our culture and expanded our world."
What would happen if you took Baz Luhrmann's trailer for The Great Gatsby and combined it with clips from the animated My Little Pony series? Thanks to YouTube we need wonder no longer. Enjoy Jay Gatsby (Leonardo DiCaprio) as Pinky Pie and Nick Carraway (Tobey Maguire) as Rainbow Dash.
When you get right down to it, writing is (or used to be) all about putting marks on a piece of paper. And while there are plenty of inspiring photographs and videos celebrating the typewriter, this clip of John Mottishaw writing with a custom fountain pen (using an ink called Iroshizuku Tsuki-uo Night Sky, or Greenish Deep Blue) is oddly captivating. (The writing starts at about the 1:58 mark.)