Buruma Takes the Reins at NYRB, the Poetry Sleuth, 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:

“Some of my resolve to get published stems from my ego. Aren’t my words important? Isn’t there something of value here? Wouldn’t this story bring joy or peace to a reader? Another part of me craves having a visceral connection to an audience; it’s isolating to keep these stories to myself, to experience them alone.” After sixteen years of writing books and ten years of trying to get published, writer Anjali Enjeti talks about not giving up. (Atlantic)

Last week Ian Buruma officially started his new role as editor of the New York Review of Books, succeeding longtime editor Robert B. Silvers, who died in March. “It was a monarchy, and I think perhaps it will be a slightly more democratic operation,” says Buruma. “Certainly I think I’ll be more collaborative.” (New York Times)

“Lightman is feared, reviled and lauded in the poetry world. For some, he’s a tireless vigilante, bravely aiming his chin at his enemies. For those enemies, he’s a bully and a witch-finder with an unnatural obsession.” The Guardian profiles “poetry sleuth” Ira Lightman, who has become notorious for accusing writers such as poet Christian Ward and the late Canadian poet laureate Pierre DesRuisseaux of plagiarism.

Celeste Ng talks with NPR about her forthcoming novel, Little Fires Everywhere, which deals with suburbia, family, race, and adoption.

Despite having steadily closed stores for years, Barnes & Noble announced that it is considering opening new, but smaller, stores in 2018. (Publishers Weekly)

Literary Hub interviews Nicole Krauss about the books she’s reading and how she used to think she would become a poet before she “took a wrong turn, and ended up in the land of the loose and baggy monster, as Henry James once called the novel.” Krauss’s next novel, Forest Dark, comes out tomorrow from Harper.

“His poems, like that forest, are a kind of time preserve.” Dan Chiasson considers the poetry of W. S. Merwin and its power to astonish. (New Yorker

On Friday the British Library added the documents, letters, drafts, and manuscripts of major twentieth-century playwrights to its online archive, Discovering Literature. The newly digitized material includes an early manuscript of Shelagh Delaney’s A Taste of Honey and a letter from an examiner of the Lord Chamberlain’s Office calling Beckett’s Waiting for Godot an “ugly little jet of marsh-gas.” (Guardian)