The Fate of St. Mark's, Dead Authors Podcast, 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:

The owners of Saint Mark's Bookshop in New York City are seeking a rent cut from the building's owner, the arts and engineering school Cooper Union, which will reportedly make a decision on the matter today. (Bloomberg)

Meanwhile, comedian Rob Delaney reminisces about the time he bought a collection of poetry by Wisława Szymborska at Saint Mark's Bookshop, and how a chance encounter with the woman behind the register altered the course of his life. (Vice)

In other bookstore news: After twenty-four years in business, Rainbow Books and Records in Hawaii is shuttering (MSNBC); and the independent giant Powell's Books is cutting its workforce (Oregon Live).

Ed Park, author of the novel Personal Days, and founding editor of Believer magazine, has accepted a job as senior editor of Amazon New York, where he'll be charged with acquiring literary fiction. (GalleyCat)

If you've been on Facebook lately, you probably noticed the interface has altered. One of the many new features is its Timeline profile page, which will use "status updates and turn them into a multimedia Facebook memoir." Creator Mark Zuckerberg claims the new feature is "an important next step to help you tell the story of your life." (Los Angeles Times)

A new bit of improvised comedy, the Dead Authors Podcast, created by Paul F. Tompkins and Ben Zelevansky features H. G. Wells (as portrayed by Tompkins) interviewing authors he's retrieved with his trusty time machine. In the first episode, Andy Richter plays Emily Dickinson. The podcast will promote the nonprofit educational organization 826LA. (Harriet)

Laura Miller interviews Kate Beaton—whose popular webcomic Hark! A Vagrant features characters such as the Brontë sisters and Jane Austen—on how she's able to transform the serious into the comical. Hark! A Vagrant will be released next week in hardcover. (Salon)

The Paris Review has posted a typed letter from T. S. Eliot to Virginia Woolf, from Eliot's days as editor of the Criterion. "Forgive the unconscionable delay in answering your charming letter and invitation. I have been boiled in a hell-broth, and on Saturday journeyed to Liverpool to place my mother in her transatlantic."