The Unsolvable Case of the Manuscript Thief, Narrating Audiobooks With Multiple Languages, and More

by Staff

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.

“This was a setup Stieg Larsson would have admired: a clever thief adopting multiple aliases, targeting victims around the world, and acting with no clear motive.” Reeves Wiedeman investigates the case of the manuscript thief who has now been haunting the literary industry for several years. With assistance reporting from Lila Shapiro, he offers new insight on the scope and evolution of the thief’s tactics. (Vulture)

Julia Shiota celebrates the burgeoning popularity of linguistically diverse media and interviews three audiobook narrators to learn how they prepare for projects that feature multiple languages. “Meaningful representation always takes effort and intention,” she writes. (Electric Literature)

A vote has determined that employees of Greenlight Bookstore, which has two locations in Brooklyn, New York, and its affiliated stationery store will be joining the Retail, Wholesale, and Department Store Union. Co-owner Jessica Stockton Bagnulo has confirmed that management will offer voluntary recognition. (Publishers Weekly)

“I’m asking for the reader to participate in the same vulnerability I had to access in order to write the book. I’m asking the reader to come closer, to feel what I felt, and to also tap into what they feel too.” Caleb Azuma Nelson reflects on choosing to use second-person narration in his debut novel, Open Water. (BOMB)

“What all these memorable first sentences convey, in all their variety, is confidence. No equivocation. No building up to the good stuff.” Alice McDermott muses on the art of the first sentence. (Literary Hub)

“Yet why, precisely, does the unicorn persist in our collective imagination, and why does it feel especially relevant now?” Mallika Rao charts the history of the unicorn. (T: The New York Times Style Magazine)

“Free stuff is the zenith of the gardener’s life, the soil tender’s greatest thrill.” Novelist Charlotte Mendelson writes about the “unalloyed joy” of nurturing abandoned or gifted plants. (New Yorker)

“ISBN doing some research, and I am about to explain to you exactly what those numbers on the back of your books mean.” Carina Pereira has prepared an explainer on the ISBN. (Book Riot)