Writer Threatens Kidnapping as a Promo Stunt, the Final Hours of Lorca, and More

Evan Smith Rakoff

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:

A Lynchburg, Virginia, writer trawls message boards and threatens kidnapping to gain interest in his new book. (News & Advance via Publishers Weekly)

A historian claims to know the details of the final hours of the celebrated poet and playwright Federico García Lorca, who was executed by a fascist firing squad in Granada during Spain’s civil war in 1936. (Guardian)

Meghan Cox Gurdon, who sparked a massive online protest over an article she penned that condemned the state of young-adult literature, writes a follow-up. (Wall Street Journal)

Morning Edition speaks to Brick Lane author Monica Ali about her new novel, Untold Story, which ponders what would happen if Princess Diana had survived her fatal 1998 car accident, then faked her own death, changed her name, and moved to America. (National Public Radio)

Actor LeVar Burton, who hosted Reading Rainbow, a long-running and much-loved PBS childrens show that aired for twenty-six years, is now hosting a Reading Rainbow flash mob via Twitter. (GalleyCat)

According to a recent report released by Pew Internet, e-reader ownership has doubled in the last six months.

The makers of Plimpton!, a documentary about George Plimpton currently in postproduction, have launched a Kickstarter project to help them cover the costs of paying for archival footage. (Paris Review)

Ten libraries have agreed to participate in the launch of Freeding, a new service that will give libraries access to a collection of over twenty-thousand titles on a pay-per-use model. (PRNewswire)

As part of the live stage show "Wits," that was recorded at the Fitzgerald Theater in Saint Paul last Friday, author Neil Gaiman sings!—and Jacket Copy has the footage.