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Posts Tagged ‘Junot Diaz’

NaNoWriMo Tip #16: Write What You Don’t Know

Do you want to take your NaNoWriMo story in an unfamiliar direction? Back in 2013, Toni Morrison and Junot Díaz headlined a “Live From the NYPL” event.

The video embedded above features the entire conversation. During the discussion, Morrison shared this thought:

“I tell my students; I tell everybody this. When I begin a creative writing class I say, I know you’ve heard all your life, ‘Write what you know.’ Well I am here to tell you, You don’t know nothing. So do not write what you know. Think up something else. Write about a young Mexican woman working in a restaurant and can’t speak English. Or write about a famous mistress in Paris who’s down on her luck.”

This is our sixteenth NaNoWriMo Tip of the Day. To help GalleyCat readers take on the challenge of writing a draft for a 50,000-word novel in 30 days, we will be offering advice throughout the entire month.

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OR Books to Publish Anthology On Income Inequality in NYC

OR Book Going RougeOR Books will publish an anthology focusing on income inequality within New York City called Tales of Two Cities: The Best & Worst of Times in New York. A portion of the proceeds will be donated to Housing Works.

How to Read a Novelist author John Freeman served as the editor for this book and wrote one of the pieces. Some of the other contributors include Pulitzer Prize winner Junot Díaz, The Circle author Dave Eggers, and White Teeth author Zadie Smith.

Artist Molly Crabapple created five illustrations for this project. Follow this link to see photos of the book’s interior artwork. Freeman, Crabapple, and a few writers will appear at a launch party event in New York City on October 13th.

St. Mark’s Bookshop Hopes to Raise $50K On Indiegogo

st marksSt. Mark’s Bookshop, a New York City-based independent bookstore, plans to move to a new location within the East Village neighborhood.

To help generate the money for a financial push, the owners have turned to the crowd-funding site indiegogo. According to the indiegogo page, the funds will be used to “build out the space and pay for moving costs, as well as maintaining its inventory for the remaining months at 31 Third Avenue.”

Some of the rewards that are up for grabs include signed first edition books by Junot Diaz, Patti Smith, and Paul Auster. The campaign will run until April 26, 2014.

2013 Library Lions Unveiled

nyplThe New York Public Library has revealed the 2013 Library Lions.

The five honorees include New York City mayor Michael R. Bloomberg, Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Katherine Boo, MacArthur Genius Junot Diaz, and noted essayist Marilynn Robinson. Tony Award-winning composer Stephen Sondheim. The Library Lions Gala for this year’s honorees will be held on November 4, 2013.

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Junot Diaz Annotates ‘The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao’ on Poetry Genius

Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist Junot Díaz annotated a section of The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao on Poetry Genius, giving readers a peek at the real life stories behind his great novel.

Poetry Genius is a section of Rap Genius, the growing site that allows readers and writers to annotate sections of any text. Here’s an excerpt where Díaz explains how his mother’s dangerous childhood experience ended up in his novel:

it wasn’t fever that nearly killed my mom—it was getting herself lost in up in the highlands of Ázua for a couple of days, until all hope was lost. She was only 5 or 6 at the time and the way my mother tells it just when she was nearly dead from hunger and thirst she came upon a talking mongoose in the brush that led her back to civilization and that’s the only reason she lived long enough to have us, her children. Because of some talking mongoose. I like to think the mongoose was a visitor from another planet. I’m way more SF than magical realista.

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Timothy Egan & Richard Ford Win Andrew Carnegie Medals

The American Library Association (ALA) named two winners of this year’s Andrew Carnegie Medals for Excellence in Fiction and Nonfiction.

Richard Ford won the fiction category for CanadaTimothy Egan took the nonfiction category for his biography, Short Nights of the Shadow Catcher: The Epic Life & Immortal Photographs of Edward Curtis.

Each medalist receives $5,000 in prize money. The finalists were each also given $1,500.

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Claire Vaye Watkins Wins $20,000 Story Prize

Debut author Claire Vaye Watkins won the $20,000 Story Prize for Battleborn, a short story collection that spanned from the California gold rush to contemporary times.

The other finalists for the prize were Dan Chaon (for Stay Awake) and Junot Diaz (for This Is How You Lose Her).  They each received $5,000. Here’s more from the release:

Ms. Watkins is the ninth-ever winner of The Story Prize and the first woman to win the prestigious book award since Mary Gordon took the top prize for The Stories of Mary Gordon in 2007. The first woman to take the top prize was Edwidge Danticat for The Dew Breaker in 2005.

(Photo via Lily Glass)

Dan Chaon, Claire Vaye Watkins & Junot Diaz Nominated for 2013 Story Prize

Three short story writers, Dan Chaon, Claire Vaye Watkins and Junot Diaz, have been named finalists for the 2013 Story Prize. The winner will be revealed at The New School’s awards ceremony on March 13th. Whoever emerges victorious will receive $20,000 and an engraved silver bowl.

Here’s more from the release: “Collections by two accomplished short story writers and an outstanding debut vie for the richest top prize of any annual U.S. book award for fiction…The Story Prize, an annual award for books of short fiction, is pleased to honor three outstanding short story collections chosen from among a record field of 98 books that 65 different publishers or imprints submitted in 2012.”

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Junot Diaz Appeals for Word Up Community Bookshop Support

Novelist Junot Diaz delivered a passionate appeal to readers on YouTube, urging them to donate to the Word Up Community Bookshop campaign on IndieGoGo.

The bookseller and community space in Washington Heights, New York City only has five days left to reach its goal of $60,000 on the fundraising site.

Here’s more from Diaz: “The pressure is immense. These folks have a lot on the line, they are almost all volunteers and they are doing this out of love. If we can get them the money by this Sunday, it will not only mean that they will get the money from the campaign, but there’s also a matching grant out there. That little money we are going to spend is going to be of enormous and endless benefit for a beloved community that doesn’t have enough art space, that doesn’t have enough literary space–without which, I don’t think we can be complete.”

Goodreads Choice Awards Open For Voting

Goodreads has opened up voting for the 2012 Goodreads Choice Awards, a contest in which readers can decide on the best books of the year. Books up for nomination include titles from Junot Díaz, Barbara Kingsolver, Damien Echols, Cheryl Strayed, Baratunde Thurston and many more.

The site, which now counts 12 million members, has nominated 15 books in each category and users are invited to vote on their favorites. The nominees are based on the number of ratings and average ratings on the site. Here is more from the Goodreads blog: “We analyzed statistics from the 170 million books added, rated, and reviewed on the site in 2012 and nominated books based on the number of ratings and average rating. A nomination is truly an honor because it comes straight from the readers!”

This opening round of voting lasts through November 12th. Readers will have two more chances to vote after this round.

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