National Book Foundation Announces 5 Under 35, Literary Freedom Project, 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.

The National Book Foundation has announced this year’s 5 Under 35 list, which honors debut books by writers under thirty-five. The recipients are Bestiary by K-Ming Chang, Halsey Street by Naima Coster, Luster by Raven Leilani, A Place for Us by Fatima Farheen Mirza, and How Much of These Hills Is Gold by C Pam Zhang. Each recipient was selected by a former 5 Under 35 honoree or a National Book Awards winner, finalist, or longlisted author. (Literary Hub)

“We’re more than twenty years in, and we’ve been consistent about trying to fight injustice and speak truth to power and trying to find a space for us.” Ron Kavanaugh, the founder of the Literary Freedom Project, talks to Colorlines about the nonprofit’s efforts to foster community around Black literature in the Bronx, in New York City. 

“We put our pens to pads as a means to not only mourn and give tribute to Black life lost, but also declare and celebrate the audacity and fearlessness of Black life (and Black afterlives) even in the face of violence.” Gwendolyn Baxley and Yolanda Sealey-Ruiz conceptualize a poetry that serves as both “eulogy and manifesto” for Black life. (Brooklyn Rail)

“I got to be myself and I got to feel a little more human through making art.” Halle Butler, the author of Jillian and The New Me, reflects on the challenges of making art under capitalism. (Guardian)

“The translator is a writer. The writer is a translator. How many times have I run up against these assertions?” Tim Parks compares and contrasts the activities of writing and translating. (New York Review Daily)

“Are our relationships predicated on our past? Do we ever have the hope of starting anew?” Stephanie LaCava shares some of the psychoanalytic questions that informed her latest book, The Superrationals. (BOMB)

The Rumpus reveals the cover of Kaitlyn Greenidge’s next novel, Libertie, which is forthcoming from Algonquin Books next year. Greenidge and Algonquin creative director Christopher Moisan comment on the final art. 

The New York Times recommends five recently released poetry books, including Whale Day by Billy Collins and Hotel Almighty by Sarah J. Sloat.