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Literary Arts Has Acquired the Wordstock Festival

wordstockLiterary Arts, Inc. has acquired the Wordstock Festival.

The nonprofit organization plans to devote the next three years to overseeing an annual literary festival as its pilot project. Wordstock will be re-launched on November 07, 2015 at the Portland Art Museum. Powell’s Books will serve as a community partner for this.

Here’s more from the press release: “Wordstock began in 2005 and is the largest celebration of literature and literacy in the Pacific Northwest. Each year, the festival brings together thousands of readers and hundreds of small presses, independent publishers, nonprofits, and independent booksellers, along with 150+ authors.”

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Women's Magazine Writing

Women's Magazine WritingPitch and publish in women's magazines with the health director of Family Circle! Starting September 30, Lynya Floyd will teach you how to wow editors with stories they want and need for their publications. You'll learn how to workshop pitch letters to endure editors will read them, master the voice and tone of women's magazines, find sources, and connect with other writers in the industry. Register now!

‘The Huffington Post’ Examines Banned Books in 5 Infographics

The Huffington PostThe Huffington Post has created five infographics (embedded below) in honor of Banned Books Week; these images examine frequently challenged titles, reasons for challenges, authors whose books have received the most challenges, and book challenge activities by state. The team sourced the data for these projects from the American Library Association (ALA).

Why do people feel such outrage against certain books? The ALA website offers the following explanation: “books usually are challenged with the best intentions—to protect others, frequently children, from difficult ideas and information.”

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Is Bezos’ Super-Secret Campfire Cooling?

6629205_563906a381_zDid they stay or did they go? You might never know if your fave authors were feted at Jeff Bezos’ annual super-secret Campfire this past weekend. Word is the elite attendees are cautioned that what plays at Campfire, stays at Campfire.

In 2011, Bezos “flew in Margaret Atwood, Michael Chabon, Alice Walker, Neil Gaiman, and Khaled Hosseini, among others, to a think tanky event he called ‘Amazon Campfire,’” Dennis Johnson noted in his Melville House blog. Since then, radio silence.

The Renaissance Weekend-like event of fabulous meals, fascinating formal talks led by folks like Neil Armstrong, horseback riding and skeet shooting, and sweet swag (down vests, fleeces) continued for the most part under the radar, until The New York Times reported Sunday on the fifth autumn weekend soiree under the headline, “A Writerly Chill at Bezos’ Fire.”

Seems a bit of the bonhomie has been siphoned off the warm, cozy atmosphere by the it’s-not-personal-it’s-business Amazon/Hachette dispute. The Times’ David Streitfeld wrote: “Some repeat Campfire attendees who have supported Hachette in the dispute say they were not invited this year…The event has become as divisive as the fight.” Read more

The Tale Behind the “Greatest Love Story” Ever Told is Coming to Print

Time announced it in 2013 as “the best news you’ll read all day.” It still is.

The tale behind the “greatest love story” ever told, of a rhyming giant kind and fencing Spaniard bold, of Westley, handsome farm boy, and Buttercup, a beauty coy — is coming to print. Our Westley, Cary Elwes, will lead a romp to “have fun stormin’ da castle” in his memoir As You Wish (October 14; Touchstone) on the making of the well-loved hit film, “The Princess Bride.”

The iconic swashbuckling rom-com introduced Robin Wright (wait, sweet Buttercup turned into Claire Underwood?), and starred Billy Crystal, Mandy Patinkin, Wallace Shawn, Andre the Giant, (I’m not a witch, I’m your wife!”) Carol Kane, Christopher Guest, Chris Sarandon, Peter Falk, and a young Fred Savage. It is applauded as one of the Writers Guild of America’s “101 Greatest Screenplays” and the American Film Institute’s “100 Greatest Love Stories.”

Elwes told the Hollywood Reporter that he was inspired to share “inconceivable” behind-the-scenes stories of making the hit during a cast reunion celebrating the film’s 25th anniversary at the 2012 New York Film Festival. Read more

How to Plot Your Way to the Best-Seller List

best-selling-author-wpWorking on a book? If your ambitions run beyond merely getting your manuscript published to making it a best-seller, you’ll need to start planning before you’ve written your first word. And we’re not talking about planning out your plot. To climb onto the best-seller list you’ll need to be a one-stop shop of writer, marketer and promoter.

Keep in mind however, that what you’ll be selling is not your book, but yourself. It’s your success in getting people to follow you, rather than your title, that is the key to sales:

This may seem a bit counterintuitive, but aggressively pushing your current title in lieu of promoting your personal brand as an author — is an ill-conceived plan that can actually stunt book sales. Literary mega-stars like Stephen King and John Grisham have a built-in fan base that buys every book they release, almost automatically. And that, says [author Tim Grahl], should be the goal of every writer — particularly those who have aspirations to write in multiple genres or cover various topics.

For more advice, including how to build your base, read: 6 Steps to Becoming a Best-Selling Author.

The full version of this article is exclusively available to Mediabistro AvantGuild subscribers. If you’re not a member yet, register now for as little as $55 a year for access to hundreds of articles like this one, discounts on Mediabistro seminars and workshops, and all sorts of other bonuses.

Poetry Blogger’s Collection Becomes a Bestseller

chaser of the lightTyler Knott Gregson’s new poetry anthology has become a bestseller. The collection, entitled Chasers of the Light: Poems from the Typewriter Series, has appeared on the hardcover nonfiction lists at The Chicago Tribune and The Wall Street Journal.

Gregson regularly posts pieces for the “Daily Haiku on Love” series and the “Typewriter Series” on his blog. The book features poems exclusively from the ”Typewriter Series.” Since launching his blog , Gregson has amassed 259,000 followers on Tumblr, 184,000 followers on Instagram, and 31,000 followers on Twitter.

Here’s more from The Wall Street Journal: “According to the publisher, there are 50,000 copies in print, with more in the works. Soon, the book will be sold at the women’s clothing chain, Anthropologie. The author’s social-media audience—heavily skewed toward young women—was important for Perigee, which last published a book of poetry four decades ago.”

Cartoon Network to Launch New Imprint at Penguin Young Readers Group

CN logoCartoon Network will open its own imprint at Penguin Young Readers Group.

Here’s more from the press release: “The new ‘Cartoon Network Books’ imprint will publish fun and interactive formats such as Mad Libs ®, original fiction novels and chapter books, Activity and Doodle formats, non-fiction handbooks, gift sets, and kits. The 2015 launch will feature books based on the hit shows Uncle Grandpa and Steven Universe, followed by Clarence, the upcoming We Bare Bears, and the return of The Powerpuff Girls in 2016.”

The two organizations have been partners in publishing books based on the Adventure TimeRegular Show, and The Amazing World of Gumball TV series since 2013. To date, more than half a million copies of those books have sold in the United States market. What do you think?

Scott Westerfeld, Nicholas Kristof, & Alexis Barad-Cutler Get Booked

Scott WesterfeldHere are some literary events to pencil in your calendar this week.

To get your event posted on our calendar, visit our Facebook Your Literary Event page. Please post your event at least one week prior to its date.

A panel of young adult authors, Scott Westerfeld (pictured, via), Libba Bray, Maureen Johnson, David Levithan, and Robin Wasserman, will celebrate the release of Afterworlds. Meet them on Tuesday, September 23rd at the New York Public Library (Jefferson Market branch) starting 6 p.m. (New York, NY)

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Ingrid Sundberg Creates a ‘Color Thesaurus’ For Writers

red

Ingrid Sundberg, a writer and illustrator whose young adult novel All We Left Behind will be released in Fall 2015, has created a “color thesaurus.”

Sundberg posted the twelve images on her blog (the one for red is embedded above); she feels that employing this tool allows her to add specificity to her writing. In an interview with Bored Panda, she reveals that many of her blog followers have utilized it for their own work.

Sundberg explained why she made this project: “This was something I made for myself based on color words I liked and the colors the words evoked for me. I use it all the time when I write. It really helps in revision as I try to make my work fresh and vibrant.”

The Rona Jaffe Foundation Unveils 2014 Writers’ Award Winners

2014JaffewinnersThe Rona Jaffe Foundation has announced the 2014 Writers’ Award winners. Each winner received a $30,000 cash prize. The six winning writers include Olivia Clare (fiction), Karen Hays (nonfiction), Danielle Jones-Pruett (poetry), T.L. Khleif (fiction), Mara Naselli (nonfiction), and Solmaz Sharif (poetry).

The award ceremony took place on September 18th in New York City; writer Adrian Nicole LeBlanc served as the evening’s special guest speaker. Past recipients of this award includes Laura Newbern (poetry), Lan Samantha Chang (fiction), and Rachel Aviv (nonfiction). (Photo Credit: Star Black)

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