Melinda Gates Donates $250,000 to Carol Shields Prize, Joshua Whitehead Celebrates Queer Indigenous Writing, and More

by Staff

Every day Poets & Writers Magazine scans the headlines—publishing reports, literary dispatches, academic announcements, and more—for all the news that creative writers need to know. Here are today’s stories.

Melinda Gates has donated $250,000 to the Carol Shields Prize for Fiction, a new annual literary prize in development for women writers in the United States and Canada. Cofounders of the prize Susan Swan and Janice Zawerbny first announced plans for the award in February last year. The first winner is due to be crowned in 2023. (O, the Oprah Magazine)

“Sometimes the act of storytelling is much more than putting pen to paper or pixel to page, but rather it too is about community engagement, kinship enrichment, and, most importantly, placing person before persona.” Joshua Whitehead celebrates the queer Indigenous writing community. (CBC)

LibroMobile, a roaming book cart and tiny bookstore in Santa Ana, California, will host its third annual literary arts festival on January 23. Moving online due to the pandemic, this year’s festival will feature events with numerous local writers of colors. (TimesOC)

HBO and HBO Max are set to adapt Nnedi Okorafor’s Who Fears Death and Deesha Philyaw’s The Secret Lives of Church Ladies. Actress Tessa Thompson is an executive producer for both projects. Both Okorafor and Philyaw are also on board as executive producers for their respective books. (Deadline)

Meanwhile, filmmaker Noah Baumbach plans to adapt White Noise by Don DeLillo for Netflix. Greta Gerwig and Adam Driver will feature in the lead roles. (Collider)

Seattle-based law firm Hagens Berman has filed a class-action lawsuit against Amazon, which argues that the company has caused “an unreasonable restraint of trade that prevents competitive pricing” of e-books via “anti-competitive” agreements with major publishers. (Publishers Weekly)

The Poetry Foundation has announced its spring events calendar, including new virtual events in its Open Door reading series, which features Chicago writers.

Publishers Weekly recaps a series of executive promotions at the Random House Group.