Obamas Unveil Presidential Library Plans, Best Translated Book Awards, 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:

Barack and Michelle Obama have unveiled initial design plans for the Obama Presidential Center in Chicago’s Jackson Park, which will include the first completely digital presidential library. (Chicago Tribune)

The tenth annual Best Translated Book Award winners have been announced. Alejandra Pizarnik’s Extracting the Stone of Madness, translated from the Spanish by Yvette Siegert, won in poetry; and Lúcio Cardoso’s Chronicle of the Murdered House, translated from the Portuguese by Margaret Jull Costa and Robin Patterson, won in fiction. The two $10,000 prizes are split equally between authors and translators. (Publishers Weekly)

For Short Story Month, the San Francisco Chronicle features reviews of three new story collections by immigrant writers: Deepak Unnikrishnan’s Temporary People (winner of the inaugural Restless Books Prize for Immigrant Writing), Kanishk Tharoor’s Swimmer Among the Stars, and Osama Alomar’s The Teeth of the Comb & Other Stories.

At PBS NewsHour, Elizabeth Flock considers a new anthology of poetry and prose by writers from West Virginia. Doug Van Gundy, coeditor of the anthology, says the selected writing “combats stereotypes from a state like this—that it’s a place of lesser sophistication, of lower literacy, conservative in all the worst ways instead of the best ways.” Eyes Glowing at the Edge of the Woods: Fiction and Poetry From West Virginia, is available now from West Virginia University Press.

Touted as “Oprah’s Book Club for millennials,” the book recommendation engine from theSkimm—a daily news digest “rewritten for a millennial audience”—has helped drive book sales, and publishers are taking notice. (Business Insider)

Kevin Kwan, author of the international best-selling fiction trilogy Crazy Rich Asians, is currently writing a television adaptation of the series for STXtv. Details have not been disclosed, but the premise will involve a set of “globe-trotting, multinational, glamorous” characters, similar to those in Kwan’s trilogy. A film adaptation of Crazy Rich Asians is currently in production in Singapore and Malaysia. (Hollywood Reporter)

Meanwhile, The Girl on the Train author Paula Hawkins talks with the Los Angeles Times about film adaptations, writing troubled women characters, and her new novel, Into the Water, out now from Riverhead Books.