Poets & Writers Magazine

Poets & Writers Magazine November/December 2019

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For more than twenty years, Poets & Writers Magazine has been a trusted companion to writers who take their vocation seriously. Within its pages, our readers find provocative essays on the literary life, practical guidance for getting published and pursuing writing careers, in-depth profiles of poets, fiction writers, and writers of creative nonfiction, and conversation among fellow professionals.

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United States
Poets & Writers, Inc
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6 Edições

nesta edição

2 minutos
tomorrow’s literary voices

WHAT IS THE FUTURE OF INDEPENDENT PUBLISHING? That was the question I asked the eight industry leaders whose answer-essays are featured in this issue’s special section. It was, of course, a rhetorical question, intended to elicit conjecture about what this beloved enterprise might look like ten, twenty, thirty years down the road. Our daring contributors delivered on that proposal, but a funny thing happens when you start thinking about the future: You end up reflecting on what came before as much as, if not more than, what lies ahead. The result is a wonderfully spirited, inspiring collection of perspectives on not only the issues of production, distribution, and technological innovation facing independent publishers, but also those of diversity, inclusivity, and the vital, necessary project of supporting and amplifying the complex…

3 minutos

LETTERS Feedback from readers Thank you for the innovative approach to the annual MFA Issue, in particular “My MFA Experience” (September/October 2019) by Kevin Larimer. I connected with the article not only as a Wilkes University MFA alumnus, but also as a career adviser to creative writing students at the Savannah College of Art and Design. Much of the advice and coaching I offer to undergraduate students who are contemplating MFA programs is to take some time to think about what they actually want out of it, to reach out to people who teach at certain programs or those who may have attended. I also encourage them to look for alumni from those programs and to request informational interviews, which is why your article was so refreshing. Thank you for taking the…

4 minutos
the second shelf

The exterior of the Second Shelf bookstore in London resembles a K2 kiosk, the iconic red telephone booth that dots the city’s streets. The shop, which stocks modern first editions, manuscripts, and other rare and rediscovered books by women, is all about standing out. American writer A. N. Devers opened the Second Shelf in London’s Soho neighborhood in November 2018 because she refused to let women’s literary work be overlooked or erased. Her mission: to encourage collectors to acquire work by women and “help redress the literary canon and imbalance on bookshelves.” Devers was motivated to open the Second Shelf after observing that the rare-book trade was dominated by men. As a contributor to the rare-book collectors’ magazine Fine Books & Collections and a frequent visitor to book fairs at which…

5 minutos
where poetry meets journalism

For nearly two weeks in 2018, poet Doug Van Gundy and photographer Matt Eich interviewed residents of Webster County, West Virginia. They talked with gravediggers and teachers and diner cooks. They had coffee with an ex-military man who sold sawmill equipment; they visited the county clerk’s office, filled with boxes of election materials; they watched an elementary school Christmas play and concert. All along the way they asked those they met: What is it like to live here? What do you wish others knew about your life? With permission Van Gundy would record each conversation or take notes, and Eich would make photographs. The pair weren’t there to report on the area for a traditional newspaper article but rather to create a portfolio of poetry and photographs that documents life in…

5 minutos
narrative medicine for doctors

Toby Campbell under-stands that storytelling is good medicine. As an oncologist and associate professor in the Hospice and Palliative Medicine Fellowship Program at UW Health—the academic medical center and health system at the University of Wisconsin in Madison—he teaches fellows that communication with patients is not about delivering statistics but rather helping them to imagine possible outcomes for their care. In Campbell and his fellows’ specialty, these outcomes are often inherently grim. New doctors assume a significant emotional burden as they lead patients through end-of-life care; seasoned clinicians must resist becoming jaded to their work while finding ways to replenish their own emotional resources. This is where Campbell sees another, perhaps more surprising place for storytelling: in helping doctors to process and sustain their most demanding work. Since 2017 Campbell has…

1 minutos
small press points

Unnamed Press (www.unnamedpress.com) is an object lesson in thinking globally, acting locally. C. P. Heiser and Olivia Taylor Smith, two former staffers at the Los Angeles Review of Books, founded the press in 2014, drawing inspiration from the flourishing independent publishing scene in L.A.—and a sense that there was more work to do. “We saw that we could bring something different to the table, particularly through our initial focus on international voices and debut authors,” says Smith. Today the press publishes ten to twelve books each year, about half fiction and half nonfiction. Notable recent titles include Adam Popescu’s Nima (2019), in which a young Sherpa woman disguised as a man leads journalists to the foot of Mount Everest, and Man Booker Prize–winning translator Jennifer Croft’s memoir of sisterhood, Homesick…