The BackList

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Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Fear of Publishing

Another great Q&A exchange between a fearful writer and Salon's Cary Tennis.

This writer is scared to be published because he/she is afraid of being successful. I don't really get it, but fear is fear. Me on the other hand, I am afraid of the widespread criticism. So I'm starting to prepare myself early!

Monday, February 26, 2007

I don't feel like writing

Have you ever said that? I know I have. Plenty of times. That's why I like this question posed "G" to Salon: I don't feel like writing. Does that mean I'm not a writer?

Is laziness a sign of writer's block, or is it just laziness? I wonder.

Cary Tennis of Salon provides "G" with a pretty comprehensive answer that ultimately says, it's up to you. If you want to be a writer, you have to write. And well if you need to get a book done, you have to write. And well, there are times when we have to do things that we don't feel like or don't want to do.


Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Chris Abani Profile in LA Times

The LA Times recently ran a profile of author and poet, Chris Abani which discusses his new book, The Virgin of Flames.

Geez, there are just too many books. I really want to read this one. I know it sounds like I always say that, but it's true.

What's interesting is that according to Abani, the book was conceived as LA (that's where Abani lives) noir in the tradition of Chester Himes.

"But Abani was pressured by his editor to move away from genre fiction, and he
had to rebuild the book almost entirely."

Pressured to move away from genre fiction? Interesting.

Friday, February 16, 2007

The Divide in the Black Poetry Movement

Philadelphia Weekly (I'm such a fan of the alternative weeklies) recently published an article that discusses the growing debate in the Black poetry movement. The piece is naturally Philly-focused but asks the question: "do slam competitions hurt poetry?"

I've been to good slams and horrible ones. But I don't think that the concept of the slam hurts poetry. It opens it up to wider audiences and adds a performance element for artists.

Can't slam and traditional written poetry coexist?

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Can I get a job at Scholastic?

When you're independent, there's nothing more expensive than health care. I didn't realize how good at had it working, paying 30.00/monthly for health insurance.

And now, Scholastic, the global children's publishing, education and media company, today announced that it is opening two on-site employee health care facilities in its Jefferson City, MO and New York City locations.

That's dope.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

NYC EVENT: Michael Thomas Signing

Michael Thomas received a rave review in the February 4 Sunday New York Times Book Review for his novel Man Gone Down. McNally Robinson is proud to be hosting Michael Thomas for a reading and conversation event on February 22; details below.

Thursday, February 22
McNally Robinson


Michael Thomas, author of Man Gone Down (Grove/Atlantic)

On the eve of the unnamed black narrator’s thirty-fifth birthday he finds himself broke, estranged from his white Boston Brahmin wife and three children with just four days to come up with the money to keep his family afloat. Alternating between his past as a child in inner-city Boston and the present in New York City , we learn of his mother’s abuses, his father’s abandonment, raging alcoholism, and the best and worst intentions of a supposedly integrated America . Brooklyn author Thomas reads from his debut novel, a story of the American Dream gone awry.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Anita Doreen Diggs' New Blog

Check out Anita Doreen Diggs' new cyberspace home called The Book Editor's Blog.

Be sure to read the post, MY CREDITS OR WHY YOU SHOULD BELIEVE ANITA DIGGS which includes her editing, development, and re-writing credits.

Friday, February 02, 2007

Winners of BCALA award

Fiction category winner: After, A Novel by Marita Golden

Fiction Honor Book winners: Fortunate Son by Walter Mosley and Jump at the Sun by Kim McLarin

Nonfiction category winner: The Audacity of Hope: Thoughts on Reclaiming the American Dream by Barack Obama

Nonfiction Honor Book winners: A Piece Of Cake by Cupcake Brown and Medical Apartheid: the Dark History of Medical Experimentation on Black Americans from Colonial Times to the Present by Harriet A. Washington

Congrats to everyone! Special shout-out to Marita Golden and Kim McLarin!