Artist Relief Awards First Round of Grants, Ishmael Reed on His Own Terms, 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.

Artist Relief has announced the first two hundred recipients of its $5,000 emergency grants. The coalition of nonprofit arts organizations behind the fund plans to award four more rounds of grants to artists affected by the coronavirus pandemic. (Publishers Weekly)

“The New York literary establishment has been imposing tokens in literature, theater, and art on us for a century. They still do it.” In an interview at the Margins, Ishmael Reed discusses his most recent book, Conjugating Hindi, and creating art on his own terms

While many in the literary community have lauded Bookshop, a new e-commerce platform that offers unique support for independent booksellers, some industry members are pointing out that the site cannot replace individual stores’ profits from direct sales. (Publishers Weekly)

The BBC/Hulu adaptation of Sally Rooney’s novel Normal People premiered in the United Kingdom over the weekend. Lucy Mangan of the Guardian writes, “It’s a triumph in every way, from acting and direction to script.” 

A new Twitter account @PublishrsWeakly is calling attention to systemic inequities in the publishing and bookselling industries, and has already racked up more than eight thousand followers. The anonymous administrators behind the account—an out-of-work bookseller and someone who works for an indie press—spoke to Electric Literature about their ambition to inspire collective action and reform.

Pioneer Works, an artist-run cultural center in New York City, has launched a new virtual programming initiative called “The Broadcast.” 

Elaine Kahn, the founder of the Poetry Field School, reflects on the value of community-based writing workshops and teaching poetry outside of academia. (Harriet)

Interview profiles couple Paul Yoon and Laura van den Berg and examines the similarities and differences in their writing practices.   

And the Daily Shout-Out goes to Rebecca Makkai who galvanized a group of authors to pledge to recreate the dance scene from John Hughes’s The Breakfast Club if Volumes Bookcafe & Bookstore of Chicago reaches $60,000 in their GoFundMe campaign.