Nicole Chung on Parenting in a Prolonged Pandemic, Penguin Random House Updates Two-Day Holiday Transit Program, 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.

“Looking back, maybe I shouldn’t have used the phrase when this is over quite so often when talking about the pandemic with my kids.” As the pandemic continues to disrupt daily life, author Nicole Chung writes about seeking to preserve her children’s sense of hope for the future, while also being realistic and honest. (TIME)

This year independent booksellers will be able to take advantage of Penguin Random House’s annual two-day holiday transit program without having to make their store orders exceed a minimum retail value. “We want to make it as easy as possible for booksellers to build reorders, and are delighted to be able to give indies additional support at this extremely busy time of year,” said Jaci Updike, the president of U.S. sales. Barring supply chain disruptions, the program allows independent bookstores to more efficiently replenish their stock by expediting orders to arrive at stores within two days. The program will run from October 1 to March 1. (Shelf Awareness)

“I think in a real way, freedom begins with a book.” Reginald Dwayne Betts talks to WBUR about his origins as a poet, his nonprofit Freedom Reads, and his reaction to earning a MacArthur Fellowship.

“Memoir has never really dwindled in popularity but has instead evolved into highly specialized, self-interrogating shapes.” Megan O’Grady writes on the evolution of the memoir. (T: The New York Times Style Magazine)

“Voice is the starting point for me. I spend a lot of time inside the voice, the construction of the syntax, which for me dictates both the psychological state of the character and the overall mood of the novel.” Katie Kitamura discusses the grammar of her latest novel, Intimacies. (BOMB)

“I think of fiction as allowing the reader to have an embodied experience. The reader might suspect how trapped the characters are before the characters do themselves.” Brian Evenson reflects on seeking to elicit both an emotional and physical response in his readers. (Millions)

“Sherriff’s tender observations of the family dynamics, and the simple joy each of them takes in the highlight of their year, prove him to be an unrivaled master of the quotidian.” Lucy Scholes revisits R. C. Sherriff’s 1931 novel, The Fortnight in September, for the Re-Covered column at the Paris Review Daily.

Anita Hill shares details from her reading life with ELLE, noting The Color Purple by Alice Walker as her most reread title.