Jonathan Lethem returns to New York City for the setting of his new novel; Audrey Niffenegger follows her best-selling debut with a modern ghost story; Sherwin Bitsui offers a panoramic journey through landscape, time, and cultures in his second poetry collection; plus the top fifty MFA programs.
The Heart Is Pleasure in Writing: A Profile of Jonathan Lethem
Whether they're set in Brooklyn, Los Angeles, Manhattan, or on Mars, all of Jonathan Lethem's novels, including his latest, Chronic City, start in the same place.
Anything Can Happen: A Profile of Audrey Niffenegger
Despite a genre-bending quality that made most publishers cringe, Audrey Niffenegger's The Time Traveler's Wife was a best-seller. Now she's back with a literary ghost stroy that could scare the pants off her skeptics.
As the editor in chief of Twelve, Jonathan Karp is always looking for good writing. Considering that half of all the books he’s published there have become best-sellers, that should make a lot of writers very, very excited.
Sherwin Bitsui’s new poetry collection, Flood Song—a sprawling, panoramic journey through landscape, time, and cultures—is well worth the ride.
In this excerpted version of his article from the November/December 2009 issue, contributor Seth Abramson reveals the methodology behind his ranking of the top fifty MFA programs in the United States, plus a ranking of the additional eighty-eight full-residency programs. For the full article and additional data for each program, including size, duration, cost of living, teaching load, and curriculum focus, see the November/December 2009 issue of Poets & Writers Magazine.
Writing Classes Outside of Academia
A listing of eight independent literary organizations that offer workshops and provide support to writers.
Get the Most out of Your MFA Experience: Tips for Success
Advice from an MFA program administrator on how best to invest your time and energy as a graduate student in creative writing.
PhD Programs in Creative Writing
A listing of thirteen doctorate programs in creative writing or English with a creative writing concentration.
MFA Programs Plus More
A map of MFA programs that offer opportunities for students who want to pursue interests that fall outside of the traditional writing curriculum.
News and Trends
For seventy-five years Louisiana State University, in Baton Rouge, has been home to two of the country's most storied literary institutions, LSU Press and the Southern Review. But prestige was not enough to save either one from a 20 percent cut in university subsidy in July.
With so many good books being published every month, some literary titles worth exploring can get lost in the stacks. Page One offers the first lines of a dozen recently released books, including Jarvis Jay Masters's That Bird Has My Wings: The Autobiography of an Innocent Man on Death Row and Laura van den Berg's What the World Will Look Like When All the Water Leaves Us, as the starting point for a closer look at these new and noteworthy titles.
On September 25, nearly two years after pulling up stakes in New York City's SoHo neighborhood, Poets House opened the doors to its new location in lower Manhattan, kicking off a long-awaited inaugural season of readings, workshops, exhibitions, and outreach programs.
Author Carleen Brice recommends titles in honor of National Buy a Book by a Black Author and Give It to Somebody Not Black Month, the book-buying campaign she launched last year to heighten awareness of black authors who aren't as famous as Toni Morrison, Alice Walker, and Colson Whitehead.
Small Press Points highlights the happenings of the small press players. This issue features BlazeVOX Books in Buffalo.
She Writes, a Web site established for women writers, has joined the ranks of literary social networking utilities. Launched in June it aims to provide a place "where women writers working in every genre, in every part of the world, and of all ages and backgrounds, can come together in a space of mutual support."
Literary MagNet chronicles the start-ups and closures, successes and failures, anniversaries and accolades, changes of editorship and special issues—in short, the news and trends—of literary magazines in America. This issue's MagNet features the Melancholy Dane, Isotope, Our Stories, Puerto del Sol, the Collagist, Alimentum, Crab Creek Review, and Forklift, Ohio.
A look at engravings by Barry Moser that appear in the collection Mark Twain's Book of Animals, published last month by the University of California Press and featuring stories by Twain that have never before appeared in print.
Matthew Shenoda speaks about his new role as the Assistant Provost for Equity and Diversity at California Institute of the Arts, in Valencia, part of an institute-wide initiative to promote intercultural awareness and develop support mechanisms for students from varying ethnic backgrounds.
The Practical Writer
Confessions of an Author Nomad: Promoting Your Books at All Costs
An itinerant author talks about giving up the comforts of home in order to promote her writing.
Go the Distance: What Rocky Taught Me About Submission
How to apply the persistence, discipline, and heart that fuels the practice of writing to the process of submission.
Learning the Trade: The Indie Bookstore as Incubator
Work at an independent bookstore connects an emerging writer to the literary world.
Bullseye: How to Submit to Ninth Letter
A guide to sending your work to Ninth Letter, a literary journal produced by students and faculty of the creative writing program and the School of Art and Design at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.
The Literary Life
The Agony of Influence: Lessons From the Antimentor
The author of The Invention of Everything Else ruminates about what she learned from the life and work of late writer Breece D'J Pancake.
Discarded First Lines From My Novel: The Toughest Part Is Getting Started
Writer and comedian Andy Borowitz reveals rejected opening lines from an unwritten novel.
The Mother Memoir: Protecting Our Children From Ourselves
A debut memoirist discusses the anxiety that comes with publishing a memoir about parenthood.
Beyond Intention: Poetry and the Art of Recklessness
Poet Dean Young discusses an approach to writing poetry that abandons authorial intention.