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Posts Tagged ‘Wells Tower’

Wells Tower: ‘I Am No Longer Doing Interviews on the Internet’

When the Internet-based Hot Metal Bridge asked author Wells Tower for an interview, the author of Everything Ravaged, Everything Burned politely declined, explaining:  “I am no longer doing interviews on the internet.”

As an alternative, Tower met with the University of Pittsburgh literary journal and helped create a special zine version of the journal. Follow this link to order. What do you think of this unusual publicity choice?

Here’s more about the zine: “We talked a lot about the dangers of the internet, kittens, whiskey, bicycles, Foucault, tombstones, Lydia Davis, beach houses, Samizdat, favorite childhood books, what it takes to write well, punk bands, PDX, writing letters, Iceland, kayaking, having brothers, revising, Post WWII male writers, Amy Hempel, future writing cabins, key lime pie, the love of tiny dogs adopted out of guilt, ‘The Loss of the Creature,’ New Orleans, the history of Zines, Thin Lizzy, chocolate chip cookies….and much more. I wrote it all down, typed it out, cut and pasted it, added original artwork from a wonderfully talented Los Angeles based artist and filmmaker, some clip art, and I old school Xeroxed the thing.”

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Stephen King Headlines Vampire Panel at New Yorker Festival

This year’s New Yorker Festival took place last weekend.  Twitter fans at the festival used the hashtag, #tnyfestival.

On Saturday, Joan Acocella (author of the vampire essay, “In the Blood”) moderated the Vampires Revival panel. On board to speak were philosophy professor Noel Carroll, horror novelist Stephen King, vampire film director Matt Reeves, and Twilight screenwriter Melissa Rosenberg. A video preview of the panel discussion is embedded above.

Several dozen King fans waited outside the venue only to be disappointed by King’s unwillingness to sign books. As he walked away with his arms in the air, he told the crowd: “I can’t sign guys, I got to get something to eat.” Alas, just because he’s a “king” doesn’t mean he isn’t human.

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2010 Young Lions Fiction Award Finalists Announced

Yesterday the New York Public Library announced the five finalists for the 2010 Young Lions Fiction Award, a $10,000 prize awarded each annually to a writer under 35-years-old. In the video embedded above, GalleyCat caught up with last year’s prize winner, Salvatore Scibona.

After the jump, you can watch our interview with 2009 finalist Rivka Galchen. The five finalists for 2010 are:

Jedediah Berry for The Manual of Detection (The Penguin Press)
Katie Kitamura for The Longshot (Free Press)
Philipp Meyer for American Rust (Spiegel and Grau)
C.E. Morgan for All the Living (Farrar, Straus and Giroux)
Wells Tower for Everything Ravaged, Everything Burned (Farrar, Straus and Giroux)

Here’s more about the award: “Established in 2001, this annual award recognizes the work of young authors and celebrates their accomplishments publicly, making a difference in their lives as they continue to build their careers. The Young Lions Fiction Award was spearheaded by Young Lions Committee members Ethan Hawke, Jennifer Rudolph Walsh, Rick Moody, and Hannah McFarland.”

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How to Keep Writing with Children

tori_patterson.jpgThis post is for all the parents in the audience. How do you manage to write with children around the house? Last night at Story Prize ceremony, finalist Victoria Patterson discussed her short story collection Drift with Story Prize director Larry Dark–offering some unconventional advice.

During the wide-ranging literary discussion, Patterson (pictured, via Chris Patterson) admitted she considered using the title “Shark Island” for her collection, except “it sounded like a ride at Disneyland.” Patterson will receive (along with finalist Wells Tower) a $5,000 award. Author Daniyal Mueenuddin won the $20,000 prize.

Patterson offered this unique tip for making time to write with kids. “I dropped them off at church day care,” she said. “Then I’d ditch church and go write.” I’d get three hours of writing. People thought I was very religious.”

How do you write with children? Add your advice in the comments for a future post.

Daniyal Mueenuddin Wins the $20,000 Story Prize

storyprizewinner.jpgLast night Pakistani-American debut author Daniyal Mueenuddin won the $20,000 Story Prize for his collection, In Other Rooms, Other Wonders. Finalists Victoria Patterson (Drift) and Wells Tower (Everything Ravaged, Everything Burned) will each receive $5,000.

The authors were chosen from among 78 submissions from publishers. GalleyCat was there at the event as the finalists read from their work and Story Prize director Larry Dark interviewed them individually.

In his interview, Mueenuddin (pictured, via) talked about growing up on his family farm in Pakistan (which he now manages). “I was brought up by servants,” he said, but stressed that his experiences on the farm were crucial for his writing. “One of the problems for writers is that they live as writers,” he concluded. “That does not provide very much material.”

Three Story Prize Finalists Announced

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Today the finalists for the 2010 Story Prize were announced, picked from 78 story collections from 53 different publishers or imprints. Now in its sixth year, the winner will receive a $20,000 prize and both of the runner-ups will receive a $5,000 prize.

The three contenders are (pictured, in order, via): “In Other Rooms, Other Wonders” by Daniyal Mueenuddin, “Drift” by Victoria Patterson, and “Everything Ravaged, Everything Burned” by Wells Tower.

The annual event will take place at New School’s Tishman Auditorium in New York City on Wednesday, March 3, 2010 at 7:30 pm. Here’s more from the release: “Mueenuddin’s “In Other Rooms, Other Wonders” … immerses readers in the colorful world of a vast estate in feudal Pakistan. Patterson’s ‘Drift’ presents connected stories about women and men struggling to find their place in wealthy Newport Beach, California. And eccentric characters in problematic relationships populate Tower’s ‘Everything Ravaged, Everything Burned.’”

McSweeney’s Launches iPhone App

iPhonePreview.jpgMcSweeney’s, the Dave Eggers-founded publishing outfit, has entered the smartphone age with a brand new iPhone and iPod Touch app that sells for $5.99 in the Apple App store. What do you think–in a world of free literary iPhone applications (from IndieBound to Stanza, will readers pay for mobile content?

UPDATE: Yes they will… GalleyCat reader Tina Pohlman notes that the app has risen to number one on the “Top Paid App” category in the Books section of the Apple App store. According to the release, subscribing to the app will deliver six-months worth of iPhone-exclusive content, along with choice selections from the publisher’s online content site, McSweeney’s Internet Tendency. Nevertheless, the unconventional press promised to maintain a focus on “books, paper, and exploring the possibilities and challenges of our physical objects.” Upcoming projects include a prototype newspaper and pentagonal book.

Here’s more from the site: “Small Chair [is] a weekly sampler from all branches of the McSweeney’s family. One week you might receive a story from the upcoming Quarterly, the next week an interview from the Believer, the next a short film from a future Wholphin. Occasionally, it might be a song, an art portfolio, who knows. Early contributors will include Spike Jonze, Wells Tower, Chris Ware, and Jonathan Ames. This material will not be available online and is pretty sure to be good stuff.”

John Wray’s Michiko Kakutani Tattoo

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Few literary critics inspire emotion like NY Times critic, Michiko Kakutani. Some worship her reviews, and others, (like Norman Mailer) wished they could change her mind. Last night, novelist John Wray took the cult of Kakutani to a new level–unveiling this magic marker tattoo.

As part of the Happy Ending Music & Reading Series, founder Amanda Stern requires all performers to take a risk. Joined on stage at Joe’s Pub by Wells Tower, Arthur Phillips, and the band, Vampire Weekend, Wray had some tough competition. Nevertheless, his full-back tattoo read “KAKUTANI 4 EVAH,” eliciting gasps, laughter, and cheers from the audience.

After the jump is an exclusive video of Wray’s performance and tattoo unveiling, complete with a Vampire Weekend chaser. Tune in later today for more music and footage from the event.

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The Two Desks of Wells Tower

wellstower.jpgWhere do you write? Author Wells Tower explained his simple method for writing fiction in an interview at the New Yorker‘s Book Bench.

Tower explained how the Internet can ruin a fiction-writing experience, and has actually set up his writing room to keep himself off the web. His two desk strategy seemed sensible to one GalleyCat editor scouring the Internets for GalleyCat posts on his one overburdened desk.

Here’s his secret: “You have to pare out distractions, especially the vast banality of the Internet, which I find lethal to fiction writing … I have a nonfiction desk and a fiction desk, and I’ve deliberately not gotten wireless Internet. In order to go online, I have to go over to the nonfiction desk.”