Poetry Versus Prose Debate Results in Violence, Shakespeare Science, 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:

Rebecca Rubin was sentenced to a minimum of five years in prison after surrendering to authorities over charges related to eco-terrorism. In addition to incarceration, the judge ordered Rubin to read a book by Malcolm Gladwell. (Los Angeles Times)

In Russia, a former teacher is accused of murdering an acquaintance. Police reported the killing resulted from an argument over the merits of poetry versus prose. (RIA Novosti)

“Eliot was notoriously diffident, and was susceptible to crippling self-doubt.” The New Yorker has an excerpt of Rebecca Mead’s newly published book, My Life in Middlemarch.

In addition to Apple’s use of Walt Whitman in its latest iPad commercial, the Telegraph lists several other products that use poets to move merchandise, including potato chips.

For PWxyz, the blog at Publishers Weekly, Peter Brantley ponders the “surge in self-published literature and the growing interest in digital craftsmanship.”

The Telegraph looks at a new spin on William Shakespeare suggested by astronomer Peter Usher: Was the Bard of Avon a science-fiction writer?

Yesterday was the anniversary of the publication of Jane Austen’s Pride & Prejudice (1813), and USA Today details why generations of readers still love Austen’s great novel.