Robertson Beats Heaney / Remembered Forever? / How-to Literature / Googling of Literature / Too Many Good Books / Finding Frost’s Poem / Novels and Poets

October 5, 2006

Robertson Wins Forward
Robin Robertson won the Forward Prize for Poetry, making him the first poet to win both best collection and best first collection prize. He won the best first collection for A Painted Field in 1997. His collection Swithering won the more recent award. Swithering beat out Seamus Heaney’s District and Circle.

Be Immortalized
Irish writer Jason Johnson will auction off chances to become a character in his third novel at Why is the 37-year-old holding the auction: For the money.

How-to Literature
In recent months, the book publishing industry, especially in England, has come out with a series of how-to literature books: How to Read a Novel by John Sutherland, How Novels Work by John Mullan, and Fifty Ways to Read a Poem by Ruth Padel.

Googling of Literature
During the past ten years, companies such as Yahoo and Google have altered the Internet environment, creating more access to more activities for the average computer user. With its book program along with the Gutenberg Project, the Open Content Alliance, and the Open Document Foundation, these two companies–along with many others–will dramatically alter how and what people read while providing wider access to original material for billions throughout the world.

Too Many Good Books?
“This fall, the largest number of new titles by brand-name authors in recent memory is hitting bookstores, adn the publishing world is asking itself an unusual question: Can there be too many good books?” That’s the start of Josh Getlin Los Angeles Times essay “Booked-up Publishers Could Be in a Bind.” More interestingly and not addressed is the question: Can there be too much good writing out there? Look at the number of new titles being published by literary imprints–small and large. Without an increase in the number of readers, aren’t we as writers and publishers just asking the same number of people to read more? Can the reader base expand?

How Did He Find that Poem?
Virigina Quarterly Review just published “War Thoughts at Home” by Robert Frost, which remained lost for decades. Graduate student Robert Stilling discovered it while doing research at the University of Virgina. Scott McLemee talks to Stilling about the discovery.

Novels about Poets
Colum McCann, author of Zoli which is about a Romani poet, pics the top 10 novels about poets: Stone by John Williams, My Life as a Fake by Peter Carey, The Book of Laughter and Forgetting by Milan Kundera, Fugitive Pieces by Anne Michaels, The Wing of Things by Sean O’Reilly, Shadow Box by Antonia Logue, Winslow in Love by Kevin Canty, Snow by Orham Pamuk, The Dog Fighter by Marc Bokanowski, and Portrait of the Artist by James Joyce.


2 Responses to “Robertson Beats Heaney / Remembered Forever? / How-to Literature / Googling of Literature / Too Many Good Books / Finding Frost’s Poem / Novels and Poets”

  1. garth Says:

    This is what I’ve been able to piece together from various reports.

    War Thoughts at Home
    Robert Frost
    [35 lines, 7 stanzas, each 5 lines]

    The flurry of bird war [?]

    It is late in an afternoon
    More grey with snow to fall
    Than white with fallen snow
    When it is blue jay and crow
    Or no bird at all.

    3. [or 1?]
    On the backside of the house
    Where it wears no paint to the weather
    And so shows most its age,
    Suddenly blue jays rage
    And flash in blue feather.


    And one says to the rest
    “We must just watch our chance
    And escape one by one-
    Though the fight is no more done
    Than the war is in France.”

    Than the war is in France!
    She thinks of a winter camp
    Where soldiers for France are made.
    She draws down the window shade
    And it glows with an early lamp.

    The uneven sheds stretch back
    Shed behind shed in train
    Like cars that have long lain
    Dead on a side track.

  2. You really can’t get enough of good books. So no number is too many!!!

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