ArtsJournal: Arts, Culture, Ideas


Literary Translators Are Finally Demanding The Recognition They Deserve — On The Book Cover

"For decades, translators in the U.S. have been ... working in the back rooms of literature even as they play a central role in enriching Anglophone letters. ... None of the past five years' winners of the International Booker Prize credits the translator on the front cover." - Vulture

Can Anna Wintour, The Very Avatar Of Old-Style Condé Nast, Remake Its Titles For The 21st Century?

This year she's been focused on turning seven of Condé Nast's biggest publications into global brands, each under one leader. She is also ensuring that there are unlikely to be any more Anna Wintours — imperial editors-in-chief each with their own fiefs. - The New York Times

Perplexed Publishers: Social Media Followings Don’t Translate To Book Sales

Followings can affect who gets a book deal and how big an advance that author is paid, especially when it comes to nonfiction. But despite their importance, they are increasingly seen as unpredictable gauges of how well a book is actually going to sell. - The New York Times

Orwell Estate OKs Retelling Of “1984” From Viewpoint Of Winston Smith’s Lover

"Orwell's estate said it had been 'looking for some time' for an author to tell the story of and that Newman, who has previously been longlisted for the Women's prize and shortlisted for the Guardian first book award, 'proved to be the perfect fit'." - The Guardian

Do Anything But Be A Writer…

The aspiring writers imagine that being an author will bring them happiness, fame and fortune. Szymborska tells them to get a grip. Writing is a ridiculous profession, she argues, persuasively. Failure is inevitable. Success is highly conditional and mostly feels like failure as well. - Literary Review

Now That They’ve Done It, Should Book Fairs Be Virtual?

While fairs give you the opportunity to bring your books to the attention of editors and scouts, they are also overwhelmed with choice, so “in-person access” to get to know their tastes for future reference, as well as learn about the markets, can be key. - ArtsHub

How Crowdfunding Is Helping Indie Bookstores

“There’s been a groundswell of support for indie bookshops. I’m very open and honest online about what it is like to run a bookshop and going through the pandemic, and I think they feel a little bit of ownership. They feel part of a community, and that community has helped us.”- The Guardian

BookTok Has Turned From Tearjerkers To Obscure 1930s Puzzle Books

Last month, a TikTok user picked up a copy of Cain's Jawbone and made a TikTok, wherein she said, "I’ve decided to take this nearly impossible task as an opportunity to fulfill a lifelong dream and turn my entire bedroom into a murder board," - LitHub

Do Little Free Libraries Contribute To Gentrification?

"By bringing this modern cultural artifact here from white neighborhoods, had I set myself up, set up the neighborhood? Was I contributing to gentrification and sending the wrong message about how I wanted the neighborhood to be?" - The New York Times

Almudena Grandes Started Her Writing Career With An Acclaimed Erotic Novel

Before her death at 61, she had become one of Spain's most ambitious, and certainly most progressive and feminist, novelists. Spain's prime minister wrote, "We lost one of the most important writers of our time." - The New York Times

How Amazon Made Book Selling The Way We Read

The populist turn has put into question whether a comparatively very small group of authors—no matter how diverse—should really hog the scholarly limelight, especially when their productions constitute such an unrepresentative sample of all the imaginative or fictional texts. - BookForum

Bookstore Lost 400,000 Books In A Fire. Then The Community Stepped Up

Thousands of books, filling two shipping containers, have been donated - and more are coming in all the time. - The Leader

The Diagram Prize For The Oddest Book Title Of 2021 Goes To —

Is Superman Circumcised?, which is, in fact, a serious study of the origins of the DC Comics character (subtitle: "The Complete Jewish History of the World's Greatest Hero"). It won the public vote against five other finalists by 28 percentage points. - The Bookseller (UK)

The Universal Story (But Why?)

From one point of view, it’s obvious that, despite exceptions, most stories portray “goody-baddy” dynamics—from nursery rhymes to juicy gossip, from ancient folktales to Holy Scripture, from lowbrow reality shows to award-winning documentaries. The question is, why? - Quillette

“The Russian Proust”, Who Died At Auschwitz, Will Have A Novel Published In English For The First Time

Yuri Felsen (né Nikolai Freudenstein), born in St. Petersburg in 1894, fled to Paris after the Revolution and was considered by Russian émigrés to be a near-equal of Nabokov. His first novel, Deceit, published in Russian in 1930; will see print in English next spring. - The Guardian

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