School Named for Poet Maya Angelou, Mysticism Library Goes Digital, 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: 

A school in New Jersey opening in September will be named after the late poet Maya Angelou. The Jersey City school board voted to name the school after the poet and memoirist over president Barack Obama and Fletcher Walker, who lobbied for the new building. The school plans to host an annual spoken-word event to honor the poet, who died in 2014. (

“I go for that tension between lushness and compression.” At Divedapper, poet Diane Seuss talks about dismantling beauty ideals in her work, as well as coming of age in the male-centric literary world of the 1960s and 1970s. Seuss’s most recent poetry collection, Four-Legged Girl (Graywolf, 2015), was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize.

Today, Apple will begin distributing $400 million in refunds to its e-book customers who were affected in the company’s lengthy price-fixing lawsuit. The refunds cover e-books purchased between April 1, 2010, and May 21, 2012. (Publishers Weekly)

Dan Brown, the best-selling author of The Da Vinci Code, is donating approximately $340,000 to help digitize works in Amsterdam’s Ritman Library, which collects work on ancient mysticism and alchemy. Brown noted that the library provided him with valuable information on mysticism for his novels. (Electric Literature)

At Litro, professor and writer Marta Pérez-Carbonell introduces the work of contemporary Spanish fiction writers to English-speaking readers with a list of ten untranslated Spanish-language novels.

Acclaimed poet and novelist Margaret Atwood has won PEN’s 2016 Pinter Prize for her work with environmental charities. The annual award is give to a writer from Britain, Ireland, or the Commonwealth who champions free speech. (Flavorwire)

“My first novel, fully imaginary, already feels more revealing, and more personal, than my previous books about my actual life.” Canadian writer Ian Reid discusses how writing fiction can unexpectedly expose more about the writer than memoir can. (Globe and Mail