Writers Hold Vigil in D.C., Sensitivity Readers, 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:

On Saturday more than a thousand people stood vigil outside the White House at the end of this year’s Association of Writers and Writing Programs conference in Washington, D.C, to protest the Trump administration’s recent actions against immigrants and to defend freedom of speech and expression. (Publishers Weekly)

Everdeen Mason considers the growing number of “sensitivity readers,” editors who scan a book for racist, sexist, or offensive language before it goes to print. (Washington Post)

The New York Times reports on the many projects of writer Neil Gaiman: his recent book of stories, Norse Mythology; the upcoming six-part television adaptation of Good Omens, the novel he wrote with Terry Pratchett; and the upcoming television series of his hit 2001 book, American Gods.

Ulka Anjaria contemplates Arundhati Roy’s place and impact on Indian literature, and how her “twenty-year turn to nonfiction makes a compelling case for the need for new forms of writing in conditions of social emergency, forms that remain resistant to commodification.” Roy’s long-awaited second novel, The Ministry of Utmost Happiness, will be released this summer. (Boston Review)

Newsweek chronicles the history and political orientation of the Paris Review.

“Without that truth-seeking ecosystem of healthy small- and mid-size daily newspapers to explain national news in terms local readers can understand, Americans are left stewing in separate echo chambers, one urban, educated, and liberal, the other working-class, rural, and spoiling for a fight.” Michael Bourne comments on the state of journalism in the digital age. (Millions)

At the Los Angeles Review of Books, Shabana Mir reviews Amir Hussain’s book Muslims and the Making of America and how it pushes against the narrow portrayal of Muslim Americans by exploring their cultural, athletic, and musical contributions.

Helen Chandler profiles Mary Gaitskill and touches on the writer’s attitudes towards children, her marriage, and feminism in the current political climate. (Literary Hub)