Gaddafi's Literature, Joseph Brodsky's Ukraine, 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:

With the forty-two-year reign of Moammar Gaddafi coming to an end, the Millions catalogs the Libyan despot's influence on his country's literature.

The Bookseller reports that because of prohibitive creation cost and hard-to-navigate sellers, the e-book market is struggling to take hold in Japan.

The New Yorker is joining the ranks of standalone e-book publishers with its first title, After 9/11, a compendium of vignettes, criticism, articles, and fiction culled from the magazine's exceptional stable of writers. Deputy editor Pam McCarthy said, "We will put this out there and, yes, if it finds an audience, we'll do more." (Cutline)

Another law firm has filed a class action suit against Apple and six major book publishers, accusing the companies of collusion in fixing the price of e-books. (Business Wire)

As a follow-up to a recent essay on the poet Joseph Brodsky, novelist Keith Gessen writes of the American émigré poet's following in his native Russia, and answers criticism leveled by Brodsky's literary executor for referencing an unpublished 1992 poem, “On Ukrainian Independence." (New Yorker)

In less than two weeks since the film's release, tourism officials in Mississippi are attempting to capitalize on the adaptation of Kathryn Stockett's The Help. The Jackson Convention and Visitors Bureau has created two self-guided tours, and citing the success of ongoing Louisiana tours related to the 1989 film Steel Magnolias, the bureau intends to offer the tours indefinitely. (Clarion Ledger via Shelf Awareness)

Writer Edan Lepucki is facing the same decision as many before her—including novelists Myla Goldberg and Michael Chabon—what to do with a hard-wrought novel that didn't attract a publisher. Lupicki's agent sent her book out into the world, and after nine months, it remains unsold. She explains how it feels to put a book in the drawer. (Millions)

Edgar "Allen" Poe? Really? Typos on book covers happen more often than one may imagine. (Abe Books via Electric Literature)