Uighur Poets Witness Persecution, Pandemic Causes Influx of Fall Titles, 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.

“As China silences Uighur poets’ voices in Xinjiang, Uighur poets and artists in the diaspora have spoken up, bearing eloquent witness to the catastrophe in their homeland.” Scholar and translator Joshua L. Freeman writes about how Uighur poets are responding to China’s escalating persecution and mass internment of their people. (New York Review Daily)

Nearly six hundred new books will be published in the United Kingdom on September 3. The Guardian attributes the influx of titles to the coronavirus pandemic, which caused many publishers to delay spring and summer publication dates. 

As the Black Lives Matter movement inspires more conversations about diversity in publishing, Publishers Weekly asked the directors of several literary organizations, including the Publishing Certificate Program at the City University of New York, the New Press, We Need Diverse Books, and People of Color in Publishing, to reflect on how to effect lasting change.  

HBO has announced that Oprah Winfrey, Angela Bassett, and Alicia Garza, among other noted actors and public figures, have joined the cast of the upcoming adaptation of Ta-Nehisi Coates’s Between the World and Me. (Vulture)

“There’s a huge value to someone who has a different perspective, and an autistic person is always going to have that.” Madeleine Ryan reflects on how being diagnosed with autism informed the shape of her debut novel, A Room Called Earth. (NPR)

“When the occasional story was published, I would leave a copy on Pete’s desk. He would then take the time to make me a better writer, going over every line.” The novelist Lorenzo Carcaterra pays tribute to the legendary journalist Pete Hamill, who died on August 5 at age eighty-five. (Publishers Weekly)

In a new graphic essay, Hasanthika Sirisena recalls losing the ability to understand her first language, Sinhala. “It’s strangely painful like a phantom limb.” (Electric Literature)

“It is as moving and clear-eyed a defense of activism as I have read.” Karan Mahajan recommends Doris Lessing’s 1962 novel, The Golden Notebook. (New York Times)