Lethem and Egan Visit Occupy Wall Street, Harper Lee Letter Auction, 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:

Invited by protestors, novelist Jonathan Lethem arrived at the Occupy Wall Street encampment in New York City yesterday to read a prepared speech, accompanied by Pulitzer Prize winner Jennifer Egan. (Business Insider)

Political analyst Rachel Maddow details the campaign of presidential hopeful Herman Cain and explains that the press should have recognized the satirical quality of the Cain campaign early on, when at the conclusion of a debate the candidate quoted lines of poetry which turned out to be lines from a song in the Pokémon movie. (MSNBC)

In an interview with the Guardian, Simon Armitage discusses the obstinate nature of poetry and the recent violence in Britain, saying "Poetry is a form of dissent."

Amazon listed its Best Books of 2011, placing Chad Harbach's The Art of Fielding in the number-one slot.

After nearly twenty years in business, the owners of Books Inc., in Gainesville, Florida, have decided to close the store. (Gainesville Sun)

Novelist Geoff Dyer reviews Richard Bradford's Martin Amis: The Biography and finds that its prose doesn't live up to its subject. "I didn’t know that 'the unpretentious Lothario-in-chief' had stepped out with Claire Tomalin when they were at the New Statesman in the mid-1970s, but I don’t feel sadder or wiser now that I do." (Financial Times)

A 1960 letter to a fan, written by To Kill a Mockingbird author Harper Lee, will be auctioned today in California. (Flavorwire)

If you're an author snapping your own bookjacket photo and you'd rather use an iPhone to do the job, GalleyCat explains how.


"Poetry is a form of dissent"

And if you like dissent, you'll love the poetry over at Black Heart Magazine! Our motto is: reading, writing, rebellion, in case you wondered about this plug. And, as an extra bonus, you can read all our work (and comment on it) without logging in, free.

Long live rebellious poetry.