Hallucinating Ginsberg, Cheap E-readers, 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 New York Public Library has acquired psychologist and "psychodelic explorer" Timothy Leary's archive. Among the 335 boxes of papers, videotapes, and photographs is a document that contains Allen Ginsberg's description of taking psilocybin (the hallucinogen in "magic mushrooms") for the first time. "Professor Leary came into my room, looked in my eyes and said I was a great man," Ginsberg wrote. The archive won't be available to the public for a couple of years, but the New York Times takes a peek.

Now that we can buy a plane ticket to fly anywhere in the world, zoom in on every square foot of the planet using Google Earth, and download more than fourteen thousand travel apps in the App Store, where does travel writing fit in? The Daily Beast's Malcolm Jones weighs in.

The Writers in Prison Committee (WiPC) of PEN International is protesting the one-year sentence handed down to poet and student Ayat Al-Gormezi on anti-state charges for poems critical of the Bahraini king. PEN calls for her immediate and unconditional release.

On Monday Bill Murray participated in Poets House's annual Poetry Walk Across the Brooklyn Bridge and read three poems: Sarah Manguso's "What We Miss," Cole Porter's "Brush Up," and Billy Collins's "Forgetfulness. The Gothamist has photos.

The price of an e-reader has dropped considerably since the Kindle was introduced four years ago for $399. NPR reviews five e-book readers for less than $175.

However, if you have money to burn you could always buy a diamond-encrusted iPad for $1.2 million. (eBookNewser)

The owners of Village Books in Roslindale, Massachusetts, sent an e-mail to customers with the news that the store is closing after six years in business. "We will miss you all terribly," wrote sisters Jane Connelley and Lorie Spencer. (Publishers Weekly)

Tired of your narrative? The Millions takes a look at plotless fiction.

Happy Bloomsday everyone! (the Wall Street Journal's Speakeasy)