Geoffrey Hill Versus Carol Ann Duffy, History of Blurbs, 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:

GalleyCat reports adult hardcover sales were down over 20 percent this past November.

In a recent lecture, Oxford professor of poetry Geoffrey Hill had choice words for Carol Ann Duffy, the United Kingdom's first female poet laureate, who in an newspaper interview compared poetry to texting. (Guardian)

The Millions examines the history of book blurbing, replete with "excesses and scandals."

Novelist and poet Sherman Alexie responds to the new Arizona law that bans ethnic studies in Tucson schools.

Barnes & Noble announced it would not sell Amazon Publishing's books. (New York Daily News)

Poet and journalist Eliza Griswold writes of leaving a secluded artists’ colony in Italy to report on the influx of thirty-seven thousand Arab Spring refugees arriving on the small island of Lampedusa, and the poetry she turns to in an attempt to make sense of the crisis. (Poetry)

Huffington Post lists reasons self-published authors aren't taken seriously.

Discussing topics such as Amazon rankings, fear, bullies, bad teachers, and depression, Other People with Brad Listi interviews New York Times bestselling author Caroline Leavitt.

Flavorwire lists the twenty most beautiful bookstores in the world.