Forgotten Tennessee Williams Play, the Power of Jacket Design, 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:

Scholar Gerri Kimber considers an act of an unpublished and little-known play by Tennessee Williams he found in the archives at the University of Texas in Austin. In the act, characters based on Katherine Mansfield and her husband, John Middleton Murry, visit D. H. Lawrence and his wife, Frieda, in London during an air raid. (Times Literary Supplement)

Amazon launches KDP Kids, a Kindle Direct Publishing program that allows children’s book authors to create, publish, and market their own books. Authors can use the new Book Creator tool to create or convert children’s chapter books and illustrated books for the Kindle platform. (TechCrunch)

Meanwhile, Hachette author Janet Fitch has published an open letter to Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos urging Amazon to act responsibly towards the book business, which she describes as “the intellectual and cultural lifeblood of this nation.” (Los Angeles Times)

Also: Kevin Nguyen has left his position as editor at Amazon Books to join the e-book subscription service Oyster as its new editorial director. At the Oyster blog, Nguyen writes, “At Amazon, we referred to our audience as customers; at Oyster, they’re readers.” (GalleyCat)

At the Atlantic, Kate Newman examines why publishing houses do not fact-check nonfiction books, despite recent scandals over partially fabricated memoirs.

“I like the sense of drifting into books out of what’s on your mind, so that it’s not really a set of calculated choices. It’s almost like a helpless giving in to current obsessions.” At the Wall Street Journal, Brenda Cronin interviews Ian McEwan, whose latest novel, The Children Act, will be published next Tuesday by Random House.

At the Millions, author Susan Coll reflects on the power of jacket design; Coll revised her novel The Stager after seeing its cover.

Mashable rounds up Airbnb rentals of the former living and working spaces of writers like Miguel des Cervantes, Charles Dickens, James Joyce, and John Steinbeck.