George Saunders Wins Booker Prize, 2016 Vida Count Released, 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:

George Saunders has won the Man Booker Prize for his novel, Lincoln in the Bardo. He is the second American writer to win the prize since it was opened to writers outside the United Kingdom and the Commonwealth. Saunders will receive £50,000 (approximately $66,000). (G&A: The Contest Blog)

Meanwhile, Saunders interviews English writer Jon McGregor about his latest novel, Reservoir 13, which he says “mimics, with rare fidelity, the way things are in reality, and the way real life, lived, actually feels.” (Paris Review)

VIDA: Women in Literary Arts has released its 2016 Vida Count, which tracks disparities in gender, race, and ability in major literary publications such as the Paris Review, the New York Review of Books, the New Yorker, and Poetry. This year VIDA also attempted to track intersections of age and education in such publications, and offers expanded breakdowns analyzing disability and impairment, Hispanic and Jewish ancestry, sexual identity, gender identity, and race.

Ten black poets including Danez Smith, Jericho Brown, and Nate Marshall share the poems and collections by black poets that most inspire them. (Nylon)

“Stop being afraid. Speak up. Be yourself. There is no dignity in keeping it all inside. If you are a writer, you have something to say, certainly. So do it. And don’t stop. I don’t believe in writers who are not invested in wanting to change the world.” At Electric Literature, Porochista Khakpour joins R. O. Kwon, V. V. Ganeshananthan, Bich Minh Nguyen, and Esmé Weijun Wang in a roundtable discussion about being an Asian American woman writer.

Vivian Gornick considers the work of James Atlas, who wrote biographies of Delmore Schwartz and Saul Bellow, and his idea that “the key to writing biography is the capacity to be empathetic.” (Boston Review)

China’s largest online publishing house and e-book seller, Chinese Literature Ltd., will go public later this year; it is valued at around $5.7 to $7.8 billion. (Bloomberg)

Literary Hub shares a few of Tom Gould’s humorous illustrations on book jacket stickers, bookshelf organization, and reading posture.