Golden Man Booker Prize Finalists, 2019 Nobel Prize in Literature Might be Canceled, 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:

The Man Booker Foundation has announced the five finalists for its Golden Man Booker Prize, a onetime award that will honor the best book to have received the Man Booker Prize in its fifty-year history. The public is invited to vote for the winner; the finalists are Michael Ondaatje, Hilary Mantel, V. S. Naipaul, Penelope Lively, and George Saunders.

In other award news: After the Swedish Academy announced it would not administer the Nobel Prize in Literature this year due to an ongoing sexual harassment scandal, the director of the Nobel Foundation, Lars Heikensten, has said they also might not award a prize in 2019. Heikensten, who said the award would be administered when “the Swedish Academy has won back the public’s trust,” also urged the remaining members of the Swedish Academy to resign. (New York Times)

Larissa MacFarquhar profiles writer Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, who “is now regarded as one of the most vital and original novelists of her generation.” (New Yorker)

In honor of Memorial Day, PBS NewsHour features women veterans who are sharing their stories through poetry.

Darin Webb, an accountant at the literary agency Donadio & Olson, has been accused of embezzling $3.4 million from the agency, which represents major writers such as Chuck Palahniuk and manages the literary estates of many writers, including Nelson Algren, Robert Stone, and Mario Puzo. (New York Post)

Novelists Viet Thanh Nguyen and Mohsin Hamid discuss the global refugee crisis, optimism, and the “global novel.” (Los Angeles Times)

Dwight Garner visits the Times Literary Supplement in London and interviews its editor, Stig Abell, who has ushered the long-running publication into a new era by expanding its coverage and bringing on more women writers. (New York Times)

“One of the advantages to being a novelist is removing oneself from the chatter of the fray and trying to get a read and a historical context on what’s happening in one’s own time. I see that as a responsibility both artistic and ethical.” Rachel Kushner on writing about the American prison system in her latest novel, The Mars Room. (Guardian)