Amazon Grant Supports Words Without Borders, Paper Prices Rising, and More

Adrian Versteegh

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:

Open Letter Books has been awarded a $20,000 grant by Amazon to support the publication of The Wall in My Head, an Iron Curtain-themed anthology conceived by the editors of the international literary magazine Words Without Borders.

Brooklyn-based independent publisher Akashic Books has unveiled a new blog.

More than 150,000 aspiring authors are expected to participate this year in National Novel Writing Month, which has so far inspired nearly half-a-billion words of new fiction.

Kyle Pope, formerly of the now-defunct business magazine Condé Nast Portfolio, will take over from Tom McGeveran as editor of the New York Observer next month (Observer).

Literary quarterly McSweeney’s has released a nine-page preview of its much-anticipated newspaper issue, the San Francisco Panorama, which will be distributed early next month.

British printers are warning that rising paper costs will be passed on to publishers and, presumably, readers (Booksellers).

Village Books in Fairhaven, Washington, has become the first retailer on the West Coast to offer titles printed on-site by an Espresso Book Machine (Western Front). Meanwhile, the University of Missouri is the latest educational institution to employ the print-on-demand device in its campus bookstore (Columbia Daily Tribune).

Children’s author and accused war criminal Radovan Karadzic will no longer be permitted to represent himself in court, judges in The Hague decided yesterday (New York Times).

Trade magazine Book Business has released its 2009 ranking of the country’s "Best Book Publishing Companies to Work For."