Anticipating an In-Person National Book Awards Ceremony, Maryfrances Wagner Begins Term as Missouri Poet Laureate, and More

by Staff

Every day Poets & Writers Magazine scans the headlines—publishing reports, literary dispatches, academic announcements, and more—for all the news that creative writers need to know. Here are today’s stories.

The National Book Foundation intends to host this year’s National Book Awards in-person. The ceremony will take place on November 17 at Cipriani Wall Street in New York City and all attendees will be required to provide proof of vaccination. The number of invited guests has yet to be decided, but the foundation has already chosen to forego the customary after-party this year. The announcement also stipulated, “Should New York State protocol and health measures change, the foundation is prepared to make whatever adjustments are necessary, including potentially shifting back to a virtual event.” (Publishers Weekly)

Maryfrances Wagner recently began her two-year term as the sixth poet laureate of Missouri. She aims to use to the position “to reach out to people who don’t usually read poetry or even think they like it.” (Examiner)

“I didn’t want to compromise at all. It was an obstinate choice, to make Westerners engage on our terrain, to show them that the future of Global Englishes is coming.” Rahul Raina discusses giving his debut novel, How to Kidnap the Rich, “an Indian down-to-its-core sensibility.” (Los Angeles Review of Books)

“The ring is as multifaceted as any radiant cut diamond, as subject to human frailty as the promises, ideals, and bonds it has come to symbolize, and as individual as the hand on which it rests.” Christopher Notarnicola combs the archives of the Paris Review for writing that features rings.

Attendees hailed from ninety countries at this year’s all-virtual London Book Fair, which took place in June. “We’ve had some excellent feedback and I believe we’ve been able to create a valuable business platform for our customers, expanding our global reach and attracting new audiences through our digital events program,” said director Andy Ventris. The organizers hope to return to an in-person program next year. (Publishers Weekly)

“As an adolescent reader I was drawn to intense, anguished, dramatic writers like Dostoyevsky and Celine. Now I find myself attracted more to calm, ironic ones.” Philip Lopate offers a glimpse into his reading life in the latest installment of the By the Book interview series at the New York Times.

J. R. Ramakrishnan interviews seven literary translators, who reflect on the pleasures, challenges, and politics of the field. (Electric Literature)

Random House has acquired a set of four novellas by Torrey Peters, the author of the much-lauded debut novel Detransition, Baby. (Literary Hub)