Politics and Prose Bookstore Opens Satellite Locations, Lemony Snicket Gets a Netflix Deal, and More


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:

The Politics and Prose Bookstore in Washington, D.C., is set to open five satellite locations in Busboys and Poets restaurants in the D.C. area. This arrangement will allow Politics and Prose to increase its retail offerings as well as its calendar of readings, classes, and children’s programs. (Washington Post)

On Monday, the New York Public Library held its annual Library Lions gala. This year the library presented honors to authors Margaret Atwood, Dave Eggers, Kazuo Ishiguro, Robert B. Silvers, and Anna Deavere Smith. Proceeds from the event help fund projects in the NYPL’s eighty-eight branches and four research libraries. (Melville House)

“I can’t believe it,” Snicket said, from an undisclosed location. “After years of providing top-quality entertainment on demand, Netflix is risking its reputation and its success by associating itself with my dismaying and upsetting books.” The streaming video service Netflix has acquired the rights to Lemony Snicket’s (Daniel Handler’s) best-selling children’s book series, A Series of Unfortunate Events. Netflix will adapt the books into a thirteen-episode series, narrated by Snicket. To date, the books have sold over sixty-five million copies worldwide. (Deadline Hollywood)

In more digital-streaming-service news, subscribers to the book streaming service Scribd will soon have access to thirty thousand audio books. The addition of the audiobook selection, as described in the press release, makes Scribd’s library the “largest unlimited-access offering of eBooks and audiobooks available today.” (GalleyCat)

Certain iconic literary characters (Ian Fleming’s James Bond, for example) unceasingly inspire contemporary authors and screenwriters to keep them alive. At BBC News, Hephzibah Anderson examines the pros and cons of writing new life into old characters.

How many times have you put down a book midway through and never picked it back up? Juliet Lapidos makes a case against “book-dropping”: “To drop a novel after a few chapters is…to disregard what makes it a formal work of art rather than a heap of papers that reside in a desk drawer.” (Atlantic)

Regardless of how important writers feel a title is to their actual work, the methods of titling remain of interest. At the Millions, five contemporary authors discuss their titling processes.

“Powell’s work offers a language to understand the frailties that persist: to think about an era of “complications” as the risk of both disease and memory, and to mourn when we should and to celebrate when we can, both activities constructing a resilient soul.” Julian B. Gewirtz reviews acclaimed poet D. A. Powell’s body of work within the historical context of AIDS stigmatization in America. (New Republic)