A Bookstore With No Staff, #saferLIT Campaign, and More


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:

VIDA has partnered with Small Press Distribution and the Community of Literary Magazines and Presses as part of its #saferLIT campaign. “Conferences, residencies, workshops, literary events and organizations, presses, and writing programs: Let’s make these spaces as safe as possible from non-consensual sexual advances, requests for unwanted sexual favors, and other verbal or physical harassment.”

Barnes & Noble has launched a new mobile app, Browsery, which helps users recommend, find, and discuss books. (Business Wire)

A bookstore with twenty thousand titles has opened in Dubai with no staff. Customers are trusted to pay for any book they take. (Gulf Express)

Where is the “literary heart of America”? Andrew Madigan argues it might just be Berryville, Virginia—a town of 4,185 that is responsible for producing 140 million books a year. (Washington Post)

Weike Wang has won the 2018 PEN/Hemingway Award for her debut novel, Chemistry. The annual $25,000 award is given for a first book of fiction published in the previous year.

Six letters written by Harper Lee in the fifties and early sixties were made public on Monday and reveal the celebrated author musing about her sick father, religion, and the South. (Washington Post)

Journalist and TV anchor Meredith Viera will host The Great American Read, PBS’s forthcoming series on America’s favorite novels. The eight-part series will air on May 22. (Deadline)

The Man Booker Prize is taking heat for changing writer Wu Ming-Yi’s nationality from Taiwan to “Taiwan, China” in response to pressure from the Chinese government. Wu, who has been longlisted for the Man Booker International Prize, has criticized the change. (Guardian)