Crackdown on Freedom of Expression in China Continues, the Tahrir Book Fair, 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:

The PEN American Center has asked writers to join in the chorus of voices protesting the arrest and detention of China's most famous artist, Ai Weiwei, by his government. As PEN notes in its press release, "China is in the midst of the most severe crackdown on freedom of expression in years."

The first English-language novel written by an Arab, The Book of Khalid by Ameen Rihani, is celebrating its one hundredth anniversary and, according to the BBC, the work is "remarkably relevant to the popular uprisings sweeping the Middle East today." 

An official biography of tech-design wizard and Apple founder Steve Jobs is set to be penned by famed biographer Walter Isaacson and published by Simon & Schuster in 2012. The book will apparently be called iSteve: A Book of Jobs. (Jacket Copy)

The inaugural Tahrir Book Fair in Egypt—a substitute for the Cairo book fair canceled due to the revolution—took place last week, and the BBC has a full report. "Almost every aspect of daily life, whether selling books or just normal conversation, has a revolutionary flavour to it," said one bookseller. "It completely dominates all thinking and creative output at the moment." (via MobyLives)

The annual Cowboy Poetry Gathering in Elko, Nevada, is getting some unwanted attention from Democrats and Republicans as federal support for the event comes under scrutiny in the budget debates. (New York Times)

Amazon announced plans to sell an ad-supported Kindle for $25 off the current retail price. The $114 e-reader has the same hardware as the regular Kindle and ships May 3. (Jacket Copy)

Finally, a book you can sleep inside. (Flavorwire)

What's up with all the run-on subtitles on books these days? The Millions gets to the bottom of it.