French Can’t Stop Writing/New Literary Capital?/Celebrating Poetry/Proofreaders Beware/Lem Dead

March 28, 2006

The French Can't Stop Writing
A wave of unsolicited manuscripts have been flooding the offices of editors who 99 percent of the time send out one of those: “Sorry but your manuscript does not suit our needs at this time. Good look with getting your work published.” How do the editors attending the Paris Book Fair do it: “You don't need to eat a whole side of beef to know if it is good quality meat,” says Francis Esmenard, director of Albin Michel. Supposedly because of the short work week and early retirement, more French are attempting to write the great French novel.

New Literary Capital?
Hong Kong—it's a city of many things, a beautiful island actually that I visited frequently during the 1980s. With all that it was, literary would not be the word that comes to mind. Novelist Nury Vittachi thought the same thing a decade ago. This month, though, Hong Kong becomes home to a new international literary prize and the relaunch of the Asia Literary Review. That''s the thoughts of Joyce Hor-Chung Lau for the International Herald Tribune.

Celebrating National Poetry Month
Bright Hill press will party with the Academy of American Poets with four books featured on AAP's Web site: Gobbo: A Solitaire's Opera by winner of Bright Hill's chapbook competition David Cappella of Manchester, Connecticut, Degrees of Freedom by New Yorker Nicholas Johnson, Autobiography of My Hand by Kurt Olsson of Germantown, Maryland, and The Artist as Alice: From a Photographer's Life by the winner of Bright Hill's book competition Darcy Cummings of Laurel, New Jersey.

At the end of April, the academy will host the winner of the 2005 Cave Canem Poetry Prize, Constance Quarterman Bridges, and judge Sonia Sanchez at the CUNY Grade Center. Also noted will be finalists Christian Campbell and Raina Leon. Graywolf Press will publish the winning manuscript, Lions Don't Eat Us, in October.

Proofreaders of the World Beware
It's happening again. Someone thinks that he/she can create software that will replace a proofreader. That's not the claim of HWA Test and Data Management but it has developed with it calls paperless proofs that use Acrobat Reader and pdf files. Read more from Publishing News.

Lem Dead
Science fiction writer Stanislav Lem, who was shortlisted for the inaugural Man Booker international award in 2005, died. His best know novel was Solaris. Read more in the Guardian. (It's better than the New York Times's version of his life.)

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