Ann Beattie’s Novel Struggle, Vonda N. McIntyre Has Died, 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.

“You just can’t imagine how much I go wrong in a novel versus how much I go wrong in drafts of a short story. It’s really astonishing, I'll never get it down.” Ann Beattie talks to NPR about the challenges of writing her new novel, A Wonderful Stroke of Luck.

Crowdfunding website Kickstarter has announced a new digital publishing conference. The inaugural iteration of The Next Page: Creating the Future of Publishing will be held online on May 11.

The novelist Vonda N. McIntyre has died at age seventy. The winner of Nebula and Hugo awards for her original fiction and the author of numerous Star Trek novels, McIntyre was a champion of women in science fiction throughout her long career. (New York Times)

“I’m looking for a poem where the surface is clear, so you don’t have to guess what’s happening, but it deepens your experience in the world, which actually becomes stranger and more mysterious over time, rather than more familiar.” Edward Hirsch on the place of insomnia, social justice, and strangeness in poetry. (Guernica)

At the New York Times, Guy Trebay tries out the digital catnip of Instagram’s Seven Day Book Cover Challenge.

The Stella Prize has announced the shortlist for its annual award recognizing extraordinary books by Australian women. The 2019 finalists are Jenny Ackland for Little Gods, Enza Gandolfo for The Bridge, Jamie Marina Lau for Pink Mountain on Locust Island, Vicki Laveau-Harvie for The Erratics, Melissa Lucashenko for Too Much Lip, and Maria Tumarkin for Axiomatic. The winner announced on April 9.

In San Jose, California, a new public art program called “Litter-ature” will see five hundred city trash cans decorated with poems by local students. (Mercury News)

Less than three months after Native Son was published, Hollywood was looking to turn Richard Wright’s best-selling novel into a motion picture. Anna Schechtman surveys the adaptations that did and didn’t happen, from MGM’s proposal of an all-white cast to the new film by Suzan-Lori Parks and Rashid Johnson, which aired on HBO on Saturday. (New Yorker)