Political Art, E-Book Accessibility, and More


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.

“What artists can do is bring stories to the table that are unshakably true—the sort of stories that, once you’ve heard them, won’t let you return to what you thought before.” At the Atlantic, Lin-Manuel Miranda argues that all art is political. From The Sound of Music to his own musicals, he demonstrates how art is embedded and often in response to the politics of its time. 

Jeevika Verma talks to Vijay Seshadri about his recent appointment as the twelfth poetry editor of the Paris Review. Seshadri lays out his editorial priorities and celebrates how the position has already facilitated his reading more widely. (NPR)

Bill Kasdorf reflects on the European Union’s recent push to require that all e-books be born accessible, meaning they “include for print-disabled users all the features and functionality that those of us without print disabilities enjoy.” Concerned that governments and publishers are still moving too slowly, Kasdorf enumerates and reiterates the accessibility reforms that e-book vendors should fold into their publishing model. (Publishers Weekly)

The New York Times visits Another Story, an independent bookstore in Toronto that puts social justice at the center of its operations.  

Benjamin Aleshire describes the surreal experience of working as a poet-for-hire at a corporate tech convention. (Literary Hub)

At the Millions, M. Randal O’Wain shares the impetus for writing his book Meander Belt: Family, Loss, and Coming of Age in the Working-Class South and his resistance to certain aspects of the memoir genre and industry.  

Linda Bierds talks about her latest poetry collection, The Hardy Tree, and drawing inspiration from a London cemetery, two world wars, and Alan Turing. (Rumpus)

In conversation with Désirée Zamorano, mystery and crime novelist Michael Nava discusses writing stories set during the AIDS epidemic and describes how the pain and legacy of that history has carried into the present. (Los Angeles Review of Books)