Lesser-Known Literary Monsters, the History of Zombie Research, 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:

When you think of literary monsters, Frankenstein and Dracula probably come to mind. You may not immediately think of Behemoth, the demon cat in Mikhail Bulgakov’s The Master and Margarita, or Franz Kafka’s terrifying depiction of his own father. Head over to Electric Literature to peruse a list of more obscure literary monsters from works by H. G. Wells, C. S. Lewis, Edgar Allan Poe, and others.

If you want to visit the graves of famous authors who died in Los Angeles, you won’t find them in one particular cemetery. Be prepared to walk all over the city to pay tribute to Charles Bukowski, Octavia Butler, and Truman Capote. (Los Angeles Times)

Horror fiction brought to you from the little guys. The New York Times highlights three independent presses who publish “artisanal terror”: Cemetery Dance Publications, EC Archives, and Centipede Press.

In a society where zombies are ubiquitous in pop culture, how do academics write about them as serious subjects? The Chronicle of Higher Education reports on the history of zombie research in the academy.

Romantic poet John Keats was born in London 219 years ago today. If you need a breather from gore and ghosts, read a Keats ode or two. Keats’s works, like many poems of the Romantic era, however, are not completely ghost-free.

Poet C. K. Williams memorializes his friend Galway Kinnell in a piece for the New Yorker. Pulitzer prize–winning poet and former Vermont poet laureate Kinnell died on Tuesday from leukemia.

Publishers Weekly has released its list for the one hundred best books of 2014. Creative nonfiction from Eula Biss and Leslie Jamison, short stories from Lorrie Moore, and new novels from Marlon James and Joseph O’Neill are among the top selections.

In other publishing news, the PEN America Center plans to auction off seventy-five rare first-edition books annotated by famous authors and poets. The “First Editions\Second Thoughts” auction will take place at Christie’s on December 2 in New York City, and will include annotated works from Paul Auster, Billy Collins, Lydia Davis, Junot Diaz, and more.