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Thursday, August 31

Vatican: Harry's With The Devil! The Vatican's chief exorcist has condemned Harry Potter. "Behind Harry Potter hides the signature of the king of the darkness, the devil," says Father Gabriele Amorth, the Pope's 'caster-out of demons'." Sydney Morning Herald 09/01/06

The New Publishers "Technology is rewriting the book on publishing. A number of companies help writers publish books, either on paper or online. Once upon a time, that approach was considered 'publishing with training wheels'. But the new customers for print on demand are often savvy marketers who understand what it takes to write and sell a book and are doing it using technology whose price is falling fast." Yahoo! (Investor's Business Daily) 08/31/06

Google Offers Free Books Google plans to let surfers download complete texts of public domain books. "Using Google's Book Search service, Web surfers hunting titles like Dante's 'Inferno' and Aesop's 'Fables' will be able to download PDF files of the books for later reading, to run keyword searches or to print them on paper. Up to now, the service only allowed people to read the out-of-copyright books online." Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (AP) 08/31/06

Wednesday, August 30

The Mystery Literary Hoax A prominent British biographer is duped into using a faked letter in a new biography. Yes, there's embarrassment to have been taken in by a clever hoax. But who perpetrated it? The New York Times 08/31/06

Penguin Goes To China "The British publisher announced yesterday that classics such as Jane Eyre, Wuthering Heights, Oliver Twist, Crime and Punishment and Moby Dick would be translated into Mandarin and sold under its logo in the world's fastest growing book market." The Guardian (UK) 08/30/06

From Screen To Book (How Long Till The Napster Of Publishing?) "The role of a 21st-century publisher is making books available offline and on. Blurb.com, a self-publishing startup, will invite 600 bloggers this week to test out its new service by creating a free bound copy of their blog. It's a fresh shot across the bow to traditional publishers in an industry already facing disruptive changes from digital giants Google and Amazon." Wired 08/30/06

Thief Steals Lit Mag's Fundraising Proceeds There was a lovely little fundraising party last weekend in New York for the literary magazine n+1. Then someone made off with the money. "We've been much drunker than this, but the party was so nice that we were lulled into a false sense of security. Everybody was wearing jackets; there was classical music. We didn't think anyone was going to steal our money. Also, our office manager got into a fight with his girlfriend and had to leave the party, and he's usually the guy who watches the cash box." New York Sun 08/30/06

Library Book Challenges Fall The number of books threatened with removal from American library shelves dropped to an all-time low last year. "Challenges have gone up and down over the past few years, but overall have dropped by more than half since Banned Books Week was started. Judith Krug, director of the ALA's Office for Intellectual Freedom, cited a couple of possible factors for the decline: Librarians are better prepared to organize community support on behalf of a book, and would-be censors are focusing more on online content." Pittsburgh Post- Gazette (AP) 08/30/06

Tuesday, August 29

A Smattering Of Intelligence Frank Kermode is England's foremost literary critic. "I don't at all think that the time we spent on Theory was wasted. One of the great benefits of seriously reading English is you're forced to read a lot of other things. You may not have a very deep acquaintance with Hegel but you need to know something about Hegel. Or Hobbes, or Aristotle, or Roland Barthes. We're all smatterers in a way, I suppose. But a certain amount of civilisation depends on intelligent smattering". The Guardian (UK) 08/29/06

For Somali Immigrants, Bilingual Children's Books "Imagine being the parent of a small child who wants to read a bedtime story, but you're just learning English and you can't find children's books in your native language. That has been the plight for many Somali parents new to [Minnesota], but the Minnesota Humanities Commission hopes to change that with the publication of four children's books with both English and Somali text. The first, 'The Lion's Share' ('Qayb Libaax'), will be available in October." Star Tribune (Minneapolis) 08/28/06

Moscow Development Threatens Pushkin Square "For more than 120 years Alexander Pushkin has seen off every threat. Joseph Stalin deported him (if only 100 metres), McDonald's first outlet in Russia opened nearby and Chechen militants allegedly detonated a bomb not far from his left foot. All along, the statue of Russia's most famous poet preserved a bubble of calm in the centre of Moscow. Now, finally, it seems the killer blow is at hand. If the city government gets its way, a four-storey shopping mall and traffic tunnel will soon be built on the square where Pushkin stands on his pedestal." The Guardian (UK) 08/29/06

Monday, August 28

An Imprint Aimed At Women Hyperion is planning to start an imprint aimed at women. "Called Voice, the imprint, which will publish its first title in April, is the brainchild of Ellen Archer, Hyperion’s publisher, and Pamela G. Dorman, a 19-year veteran of Viking. It will be just one of a number of new imprints aimed at female readers: Warner Books already has a women’s imprint called 5 Spot and in the fall is starting the Springboard Press, for baby boomers, with a large portion of its titles catering to female readers." The New York Times 08/29/06

Were Illiad, Odyssey Written By Women? "Andrew Dalby, author of Rediscovering Homer, argues that the attribution of the poems to Homer was founded on a falsehood. Homer’s link to the poems, Dalby writes, stems from an 'ill-informed postclassical text, the anonymous Life of Homer, fraudulently ascribed to Herodotus,' a respected Greek historian who lived from around 484-425 B.C." Discovery 08/28/06

The Reading Crisis (But Why?) "The ability and desire to read are really functions of a society that values them for their own sake, not as an afterthought in the selling of books and advertising. Yet, even though there's no end to America's literacy groups and the soliciting of donations, the concern persists that reading skills nationwide are getting worse. Perhaps what's needed is the acknowledgment that reading and the writing of good books needs to be encouraged after the literacy program ends." Pittsburgh Post-Gazette 08/27/06

Sunday, August 27

A New Norman Mailer Novel January will see a new novel by Norman Mailer, his first in ten years. "The title of the new book is 'The Castle in the Forest,' Random House said in a statement. It said a synopsis was not available." Yahoo! (AP) 08/26/06

The Good Old Days In Canada (As In 3000 "Serious" Readers) "The adjective 'serious' was never precisely defined, but it was understood to describe those readers who could be counted on to go to a bookstore at least once a week and buy one or two titles on each occasion, mixing purchases of fiction with those of non-fiction. Since then — a time some publishing types like to call the B.C. Era (as in 'Before Chapters/Indigo') — that estimate has dropped, I'm told, to between 1,600 and 2,000, the result, one imagines, of the competing distractions-attractions of the Internet and the rise of digital media." The Globe & Mail (Canada) 08/26/06

Encyclopedia To The World A goal of Wikipedia is to create articles in as many languages and cultures as possible. But "how do you create an online encyclopedia when few native speakers have access to the Internet? What use is an encyclopedia when literacy rates among a language’s speakers can approach zero? And who should control the content of an encyclopedia in a local language if not enough native speakers are moved, or able, to contribute?" The New York Times 08/26/06

Friday, August 25

Coupland: The Mediocrity Of CanLit Douglas Coupland has launched a withering attack on CanLit. "There is a grimness around CanLit — the same sort of grimness that occurs when beautiful young adults are forbidden to leave home and are forced to tend to aging and dying family members, when they are forbidden to lead their own lives." Toronto Star 08/25/06

Thursday, August 24

Free Books, Read Aloud A number of new collectives are recording public-domain books and releasing them on the internet. "At its worst a free audiobook can sound like a teenager reading aloud in high school English class. At its best it can offer excellent sound quality and skilled narration infused with a passion for the text. In between is a world of competent readings, sometimes spiced with affected accents, mumbled words and distant car horns and reflecting all manner of literary interpretations." The New York Times 08/25/06

YA YA - Adults Go Teen There's a growing audience for a category of book publishers call "young adult." But the new readers aren't kids, it's adults. "Children's books have a more upbeat ending, and a lot of people are looking for that. They want something a little more entertaining or fluffy, so they come to the kids' section, only to find out that these books are not necessarily fluffy at all. Like Harry Potter - it makes you think." Philadelphia Inquirer 08/24/06

Wednesday, August 23

Publishing's Cult Of Personality "One hundred and fifty years after Flaubert lived, and seventy-seven years after the publication of Faulkner's The Sound and the Fury, the publishing industry increasingly resembles the façade of Hollywood, a world where only certain kinds of artists get their names on the marquee. To boot, before acquiring a book, publishers have already begun to factor in the potential media persona of a publishable author." Poets & Writers 08/06

Miami Schools Continue Fight To Ban Children's Book The Miami School Board has decided to continue to try to ban a children's book on Cuba from school library shelves. "The board voted 5-2 to appeal a federal judge's temporary order barring the district from removing the children's book, along with 23 others in the series. The district wants to remove "Vamos a Cuba" ("A Visit to Cuba") following a parent's complaint that it failed to accurately depict the reality of life under Cuba's communist government." Yahoo! (AP) 08/23/06

Tuesday, August 22

Quill Awards Nominees "Stephen King, Doris Kearns Goodwin and former Vice President Al Gore were among the nominees announced Tuesday for the second annual Quills Awards — people's choice prizes trying to catch on with the public. Publishers have complained that readers showed little interest in last year's awards and that the Quills had no discernible affect on sales." Yahoo! (AP) 08/22/06

Monday, August 21

Samuel Taylor Coleridge Papers Bought The British Library has bought an archive of papers from Samuel Coleridge Taylor's estate. "In the nearly two centuries since Coleridge's death, the papers have been kept by family members in the village of Ottery St. Mary in Devon, southwest England, where the creator of Kubla Khan and The Rime of the Ancient Mariner was born." The Globe & Mail (AP) 08/21/06

Sunday, August 20

Read For Fun Life is too short to be reading books you don't like, writes Nick Hornby. So often we read books we think we ought to read. But what is the point? The Telegraph (UK) 08/20/06

More Books, Fewer Opportunities For Writers It is "the great paradox of modern publishing. While there are more books published than ever before, it is more difficult to get published than ever before... This is supported by evidence of publishers rejecting new writing that does not have a celebrity attached while scaling down the money paid to mid-list authors to a level where there is barely an incentive for them to get out of bed." The Times (UK) 08/17/06

Friday, August 18

ChiTrib Announces Literary Prizes "Joyce Carol Oates, a writer known for exploring the margins of society in richly imagined novels shot through with sometimes lurid violence, is the winner of this year's Chicago Tribune Literary Prize," a lifetime achievement award. Other Tribune prizewinners this year include Louise Erdich (for her novel, The Painted Drum); Taylor Branch for At Canaan's Edge, his examination of Martin Luther King and the civil rights movement; and children's book author Kate DiCamillo. Chicago Tribune 08/18/06

Thursday, August 17

Stop! Why Wikis Work "Wikipedia and its contributors are excruciatingly self-aware. Wikipedia has developed many charming quirks and in-jokes in its five short years of existence, nearly all self-reflexive, including a habit of obsessively linking to its own articles. But, far more interesting, it has also collectively developed a robust sensibility about what is permissible in its own pages. Nearly every Wikipedia user has occasionally come across a little tag at the top of an article: 'Stop!' it says, 'The neutrality of this article is disputed. Please see the discussion on the talk page.' This little tag, I'm convinced, is the secret to Wikipedia's success." Reason 08/15/06

Grass Autobiography Flying Off Shelves Orders for Gunther Grass' new autobiography have almost doubled since the Nobel author revealed he had been a member of the Hitler SS. Yahoo! (AFP) 08/17/06

Barnes & Noble: Sales Down, Profits Up Barnes & Noble reports profits were up 23 percent in the second quarter. The increase wasn't because of bigger sales, though. "Sales decreased 1 percent to $1.16 billion from $1.17 billion last year, largely due to year-ago sales of best-seller Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince." Yahoo! (AP) 08/17/06

Derailing The Track "In yesterday's book world, no one except publisher and author -- and sometimes not even author -- knew how many copies of a book were sold. Sales figures were proprietary. [But today,] when a veteran writer's agent submits a manuscript to a new publisher, the publisher calls Bookscan to check the writer's track record - 'the track' - to see how many copies of previous books were sold. If the numbers are flat or trending down, the publisher may pass." And a bad sales record can stick to an author like glue, to the point that many authors are beginning to use pseudonyms in an effort to "fool the track." Boston Globe 08/17/06

Put The Books Where People Can Find Them? The Hell You Say! The New York Public Library is undertaking a major reordering of the materials in its main reading room. "After 95 years as one of the city’s grandest public spaces, the reading room is letting go of the arcane, impenetrable ordering system to which it has clung for generations and replacing it with something a person might actually be able to understand... The [old] system is used only by the New York Public Library. Its greatest drawback is that no one but the system’s librarians really understands it." The New York Times 08/17/06

Wednesday, August 16

Writing - Either You've Got It Or... Can good writing be taught? It's a debate that has been going on for years. "What would it say about me, my students, and the hours we’ve spent in the classroom if I said that any attempt to teach the writing of fiction is a complete waste of time?" The Atlantic 08/08

Chinese Leader As Bestselling Author Former Chinese leader Jian Zemin's writings have been given extraordinary promotion, and have soared to the top of the bestseller list. "Published in three tomes, the collection of 203 speeches, articles, letters and decrees is difficult to carry, let alone read. But since its launch last week, the work has been extolled as one of the three ideological foundations of the Communist party. Along with similar works by Mao Zedong and Deng Xiaoping, it forms the closest thing the party has to a Bible, guaranteeing its place in every library, university and military barracks." The Guardian (UK) 08/17/06

How Literature Really Works "It's a truism that great novels have something to tell us not only about life but about our own lives. But for decades literary criticism has neglected or scorned this useful truth in favor of 'theory' and its barbarous jargon. How refreshing then to read a study which dwells without apology, and with genuine insight, on the ways in which novels impinge upon our own experience. This is Edward Mendelson's 'The Things That Matter: What Seven Classic Novels Have to Say About the Stages of Life'." New York Sun 08/16/06

Tuesday, August 15

Classics In Translation The Loeb Library has recently published its 500th volume in translation. "Just as scholars once feared, there has been a steady decline in hard-core classical philology—and thanks in part to that, the Loeb Library has lately thrived." Slate 08/15/06

As Nonfiction Blossoms, Literature May Wither "Nonfiction, once relegated to the 'good for you, like oatmeal' shelf, has become the kind of fare readers choose for enjoyment. In this age of declining readership for all sorts of publications, any reading is good reading, right? Maybe. But does a de-emphasis of the literary novel -- still the form of entertainment that requires the most engagement and conjecture on the reader's part -- coincide with a devaluation of the imagination?" Star Tribune (Minneapolis) 08/11/06

E-Book Demand Is High After All "More than 30 million books were downloaded in the past month as part of the World eBook Fair, a giveaway of books in electronic form. Originally intended to run July 4 to Aug. 4, the project was extended for a week because unexpected demand at the start temporarily overwhelmed computer servers." Boston Globe 08/15/06

What Took Günter Grass So Long? (And Why Now?) "Nobel prize-winning author Günter Grass's surprise admission that he served in the Waffen SS as a teenager has been met with sympathy from some German writers but drew harsh criticism from other prominent figures who asked why he had waited so long to own up. Some argued that, as a prominent moral voice that urged Germany to face up to the Nazi past, the 78-year-old's authority had been undermined by his silence about his months in Adolf Hitler's notorious paramilitary combat force." The Guardian (UK) 08/15/06

Monday, August 14

Man Booker Prize Nominees Nineteen authors have been chosen for this year's Man Booker Prize longlist. "The 19 books were chosen from 112 entries - 95 submitted and the remainder called in by the judging panel. A shortlist will be announced on 14 September, with the overall winner revealed on 10 October." BBC 08/14/06

  • Booker List - Very Familiar "Among longlisted contenders seen as having a fair chance of reaching next month's shortlist are the veteran writer and columnist Howard Jacobson...Others are the South African Nadine Gordimer for Get a Life, Kate Grenville for The Secret River and Barry Unsworth, joint winner of the prize in 1992, for The Ruby in Her Navel." The Guardian (UK) 08/15/06

Man Booker Prize: Difficult To Laugh Why does the Booker Prize give short shrift to comedic writers? "There are some terrifically good comic writers around at the moment, such as David Lodge and Howard Jacobson, are in some respect running with a handicap. But I know from experience that when you get into that committee room, it's extremely hard to argue that a trivial book is more important than an earnest one." BBC 08/14/06

Starbucks Blend - A Book In Every Cup? Excitement in the publishing world that Starbucks would begin offering books with its lattes has calmed somewhat since the coffee company said it would offer first a book that would already have been a best-seller. "Starbucks' biggest gamble may be that its customers will be willing to buy a book with their daily caffeine fix. According to those involved with the project, however, it's a natural fit." Los Angeles Times 08/14/06

Sunday, August 13

Caught Up In Events Multiculturalism has been a defining goal for European societies for decades, but terrorism fears have recently caused many to question whether certain groups (namely, hardline Islamists) should have a role i western societies. For a generation of young Islamic authors living in Europe, it is more than an idle debate. "Until the literary world is fully integrated (both in terms of the authors out there, and what they write), and in light of the unnerving events that rattled the world this week, writers... wonder if they will continue to face questions about representation and authenticity ad nauseum." The Globe & Mail (Canada) 08/12/06

Betting On The Newbies The publishing industry is a bit of a gambler's paradise: after all, success depends on correctly guessing what the reading public will want to buy in the coming months and years. When you're dealing with established authors with an existing audience, the game is fairly simple. But when you're pursuing "one of the biggest prizes in publishing: a book by a new writer that catapults to enormous commercial success," it's a whole different story. The New York Times 08/12/06

Friday, August 11

Google Library Project Gets A Big Partner "The University of California is joining Google Inc.'s book-scanning project, throwing the weight of another 100 academic libraries behind an ambitious venture that's under legal attack for alleged copyright infringement. The deal to be announced Wednesday covers all the libraries in UC's 10-campus system, marking the biggest expansion of Google's effort to convert millions of library books into digital form since a group of authors and publishers sued last fall to derail a project launched 20 months ago." The Globe & Mail (AP) 08/11/06

Thursday, August 10

Sex Sells. Great Gobs Of Sex Written Up By Hot Chicks Sell More. Blogs are a great way to get noticed in the publishing world, and if the blog is anonymous, and has plenty of sex, well, you just might get offered a book deal by the end of the year. Don't believe it? Meet Zoe Margolis. "Under her pseudonym, Abby Lee, she started a sex blog at the beginning of 2004, which is witty, moreish and incredibly explicit... The blog tootled along for about six months, and then suddenly went crazy, and was published as a book last week (for which she got 'six figures'). The book is already in the bestseller lists." The Guardian (UK) 08/11/06

Through A Bookstore, Preserving Armenian Cultural Identity "Thirty years ago, with his native Lebanon going up in the flames of civil war, Harout Yeretzian, a Lebanese Armenian, came to Hollywood and joined his brother in founding a magazine devoted to the Armenian language and culture. One thing led to another. The magazine spawned a print shop, which spawned a bookstore, which spawned a small publishing house. Three decades later, the brother is gone. So are the magazine and the print shop." But Yeretzian still has a bookstore, and through it he continues to pursue his mission: "to help his fellow Armenians maintain their ancient identity." Los Angeles Times 08/10/06

Wednesday, August 9

What To Read? (A Furious Schoolyard Debate) Britain's Qualifications and Curriculum Authority has been asked to review and update student reading lists. The "review of English teaching, English 21, launched by the poet laureate, Andrew Motion, has provoked an occasionally furious debate about the merits or otherwise of prescribing texts. Much to the QCA's surprise, some teachers consulted are against the plan to give them more flexibility over choice of books." The Guardian (UK) 08/09/06

UCalifornia Joins Google Digital Library Project The University of California has joined Google's massive library digitization project. "UC is the fourth major U.S. university — along with Stanford, Michigan and Harvard — to contribute at least some of their library collections to the project. The New York Public Library and Oxford University are also allowing portions of their libraries to be scanned. The mammoth project, begun in 2004, is expected to take years to complete and could cost Google tens of millions of dollars." CBC 08/09/06

Hitting Back At Chick Lit Otto Penzler is fed up with Chick Lit. "Some years ago, there was a small movement to call private eye stories Dick-lit. It didn't stick. But chick lit has, and what I don't like is that it's cynical. I don't like cynicism, never have, partly because, like its cousin, pessimism, it's too easy.There's always reason to doubt, there's always reason to fear the worst, but to what end? Negativism of all kinds is plentiful and, frankly, it's getting really irritating." New York Sun 08/09/06

Tuesday, August 8

The Author's Quixotic Task: Catching Oprah's Eye "Oprah Winfrey changed Michele Weldon's literary life. But it took a little doing. The Chicago author and Medill School of Journalism prof's first book, 'I Closed My Eyes: Revelations of a Battered Woman,' a 1999 memoir, had just been published and she thought it perfect 'Oprah' material -- so perfect that four times annually over the next three years, she rang up one of the show's producers to gently pitch its worthiness." The odds of succeeding as Weldon did are extremely slim. "But Oprah's track record is too stunning, the stuff of lore, rife with publishing industry success stories. So authors keep doing what Weldon did: storming the compound -- literally and figuratively -- to gain notice." Chicago Sun-Times 08/08/06

Monday, August 7

Starbucks Books Starbucks is moving into selling and promoting books. "This is the next step of our entertainment strategy. Our plan has been to start with music, take the next step into film and add books as the third leg of the stool." Yahoo! (AP) 08/07/06

Sunday, August 6

Harry Potter - Not Just For Kids Anymore There are conventions of adults taking the Potter ouevre seriously. Really seriously. "We need to recognise that just because something's popular doesn't mean it's bad. There's a great deal we can learn about things that are popular. And it's popular among such a diverse group of readers." The Observer (UK) 08/06/06

Who Reads? (Mostly Women) "When the federal Department of Canadian Heritage surveyed Canadian reading habits last year, it found a distinct gender gap. Women accounted for 60 per cent of the daily readers and 70 per cent of the heavy readers who had read 50 or more books in the last 12 months. Women also outnumbered men two to one as regular readers of both classic and contemporary novels." The Globe & Mail (Canada) 08/05/06

Dispute Over Book Filming Sparks Debate The halting of filming of a popular book by Monica Ali in London has provoked a debate about cultural sensitivities and freedom of expression. "In some ways, the debate has revived a much wider discussion in Europe about whether free speech may be limited by the sensitivities of people who feel affronted by it. Should old Western societies, in other words, rewrite their definitions of liberty to accommodate the sensitivities of others?" The New York Times 08/05/06

Thursday, August 3

That Paris Thing Why are so many books set in Paris? "People who read these books aren’t interested in what really happens at different levels of society. They’re into the fantasy Paris, the Paris of sophistication and magic and Champagne drinking." The New York Times 08/04/06

A Cataloguing Embarrassment At Library And Archives Canada "If anything shows how Library and Archives Canada needs to upgrade its cataloguing systems, it could be the fact that staff realized that they had not one but two originals of a valuable 16th-century map only when they read about it on July 27 in The Globe and Mail. ... Outside archivists and researchers say these problems result from too little care being taken in translating, cross-referencing and proofreading entries when putting catalogues on-line." The Globe and Mail (Toronto) 08/03/06

Wednesday, August 2

HarperCollins Expands Web Presence The publisher will give readers internet access to "the first three pages of most chapters in 135 titles by 10 authors, including well-known writers like Michael Crichton, Lisa Scottoline, Bernard Cornwell and Paulo Coelho." The New York Times 08/03/06

For The Kids - Seattle Children's Bookstore Hangs On "The travails of independents in today's market are well-known, but for specialty children's bookstores, survival is even more precarious. Kids' books are priced lower than adult fare, yet the overhead is the same. And the young clientele has a pesky way of growing up and moving on." But Seattle's oldest children's book store is doing fine... Seattle Post-Intelligencer 08/02/06

PR Savvy Now An Author's Job Requirement "Just as America has turned into a 'sink or swim' society, publishers keep abandoning worthy authors to a marketplace stacked against them. And they do this while newspapers and electronic media are ditching arts coverage. In such a world, a little barnstorming self-promotion is a basic survival skill." Dallas Morning News 07/31/06

Tuesday, August 1

Once Again: We All Know The Kid Is Fictional, Right? It's come to this: authors Stephen King and John Irving have publicly pleaded with J.K. Rowling to spare the life of the boy wizard Harry Potter in the final installment of her bestselling series. The plea, which was made straight to Rowling's face at a charity reading in New York, may have fallen on deaf ears, however, as the famously secretive Rowling refused to make any promises. Sydney Morning Herald (Reuters) 08/02/06

Perseus To Buy Consortium "Perseus Books Group, one of the largest independent publishers of general-interest books, is expected to announce today that it has acquired Consortium, a St. Paul-based provider of sales, marketing, distribution and bill collecting services to 100 small independent publishers across the country." The acquisition is expected to improve Perseus's ability to market itself and widely distribute its product. The New York Times 08/01/06

Joyce's Long-Forgotten Play Gets A Viewing James Joyce only wrote a single play in his lifetime, and it was a critical disaster. Inspired by the work of Ibsen, Joyce created Exiles, "a work freighted with jealousy and the ogre of betrayal... His efforts to have it produced were Herculean and sometimes ludicrous... The tension surrounding the first night had something of the mystique of a séance, [and] the play was immediately withdrawn." Exiles is currently being revived in London. The Guardian (UK) 08/01/06

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