A veteran editor who has worked at publishing houses both large and small, Chuck Adams of Algonquin Books talks about what beginning writers tend to forget, the secret to selling two million copies, and the problem with MFA writing.
Article Archive: Feature
Articles from Poet & Writers Magazine include material from the print edition plus exclusive online-only material.
A writer doesn't work for four decades, publish ten books, and win the Nobel Prize without developing a healthy dose of skepticism. This attitude, combined with the confidence to disregard critics, has made Toni Morrison stronger than ever.
Known as a heavy-hitting agent willing to go to bat for her clients, Molly Friedrich discusses how an author should choose an agent, what she looks for in a manuscript, and what separates great agents from merely good ones.
The story of David Rhodes is punctuated by early successes and devastating losses, personal demons and unlikely angels, dogged determination and blind faith, and the next chapter begins with the triumphant return of a major American novelist after a thirty-year silence.
Having settled into her new role at Nan Talese’s imprint following her ouster from Houghton Mifflin, editor Janet Silver discusses what she looks for in a new writer and what every author should know about agents.
Agent Nat Sobel, one of the most forward-thinking and outspoken agents in the business, voices his opinions on what authors should do for themselves, the dangers of MFA programs, and what he finds in literary magazines.
With nearly four decades of editing experience, publishing veteran Pat Strachan reveals the qualities she looks for in fiction, her approach to editing, and how writers can help themselves navigate the industry.
Twelve debut poets talk about their experiences publishing first collections of poetry.
Eleven years after the publication of his best-selling debut story collection, Junot Díaz’s follow-up has finally arrived.
With the publication of his ninth collection, poet Bin Ramke has emerged as one of the avant-garde's treasured half-secrets.
Greg Bottoms has demonstrated that the truth is rarely black and white in all three of his books of creative nonfiction, but never more vibrantly than in his latest, The Colorful Apocalypse.
In our seventh annual profile of first-time fiction writers, we introduce Rishi Reddi, Jeff Hobbs, Frances Hwang, Phil LaMarche, and Sunshine O’Donnell.
A selection of recently published titles—blockbuster novels, international literature, and contemporary poetry collections—for the discerning beach bum.
For eight years readers have anticipated Nathan Englander’s follow-up to his wildly successful debut story collection. With the publication of The Ministry of Special Cases, the wait is over.
An interview with poet Lawrence Ferlinghetti about the Beat generation, City Lights Bookstore, and Ezra Pound.
In ten years, Tom Bissell went from being a directionless dropout to the acclaimed author of four books.
In his new novel, Jamestown, small press superstar Matthew Sharpe turns to history—sort of.
Whether it’s a thousand-page novel, a single-paragraph story, or a footnoted essay, the elusive author always offers a complicated—and sometimes maddening—reading experience. But is there more to David Foster Wallace than words on a page?
In five books written within the past eleven years, incuding The Last of Her Kind, Sigrid Nunez has obscured and sometimes just ignored traditional distinctions of genre by blending elements of fiction and autobiography.
The eighteen poets featured here represent only a fraction of the debut books published in 2005, yet they are emblematic of the diverse community of poets who have recently forged their own paths to publication.
Two years after publishing a brutal, unflinching account of his drug addiction, James Frey is showing signs of becoming a kinder, gentler writer in his second memoir, My Friend Leonard.
What if genetic cloning had become the defining science of the 20th century? The main characters of Kazuo Ishiguro's new novel contend with such a world—and its moral consequences.
Elizabeth Gaffney, Adrienne Miller, and Adrienne Brodeur—three high-profile magazine editors who recently added "debut novelist" to their resumés.
After a 10-year hiatus from publishing, Norman Dubie has returned with an award-winning volume of collected and new poetry, a 400-page sci-fi poem, and his latest, Ordinary Mornings of a Coliseum.
In her Pulitzer Prize–winning first book, The Interpreter of Maladies, Jhumpa Lahiri explores the struggle of first- and second-generation Indian Americans bridging the gap between the country they call home and the heritage that defines them. Her much-anticipated first novel, The Namesake, explores a similar theme.