Throw The Book At Them

SomeOne writes \"A Story says we, in the UK, are now in the era of the \'football autobiography\' - and it\'s not pleasant.

The worst thing about all these books is that the advance publicity assures them of massive sales.

The formula is thus: Say something controversial, add the threat of legal action, make sure the papers get hold of it, make no comment in defence of your claims whatsoever - then sit back and wait for the cash to roll in.


Writer Speaks Out Against Trivial Novels

Bestselling author and atheist Philip Pullman (The Amber Spyglass) has insisted that \"novels must discuss morality or they will slip into the trivial and worthless ... You can\'t leave morality out unless your work is so stupid and so worthless that no-one would want to read it anyway.\" Read More. Here\'s Another One.


What\'s Left of Chomsky

Preston Enright writes: \"A May 5, 2002 Washington Post article noted that Noam Chomsky is the most-cited living author on the planet. My media project, \"What\'s Left,\" is offering free copies of audiotaped lectures by Professor Chomsky, and other progressive figures like Ralph Nader, Angela Davis and Howard Zinn. The tapes come in sturdy boxes with a description of the talk and the speaker. My hometown library, the Denver Public Library, receives two copies of every lecture we produce and they are checked out constantly.
Please contact me, Preston Enright, to receive a collection of some of the most eye-opening talks on major social issues of the day.


The mystery of Hannah Crafts

Charles Davis sent over The mystery of Hannah Crafts.
By John Bloom
Who was Hannah Crafts. Was Hannah Crafts really a black woman? Was she really a slave? How do we know she wasn\'t a tea-sipping housewife in Morristown who wanted to help abolish slavery?
In case you missed the ballyhoo, 16 months ago an obscure 301-page handwritten manuscript was offered for auction at the Swann Galleries in New York. The title page read \"The Bondwoman\'s Narrative by Hannah Crafts, a Fugitive Slave, Recently Escaped from North Carolina.\"

The catalog said that the manuscript appeared to be from the 1850s and that it was \"uncertain that this work is written by a \'negro,\'\" but that there was textual evidence to suggest that it was written by a slave — for example, \"her escape route is one sometimes used by run-aways.\"


\'Turner Diaries\' author dies

James Nimmo sent over Word That White supremacist leader William Pierce, whose book The Turner Diaries is believed to have inspired Oklahoma City bomber Timothy McVeigh, died Tuesday. He was 68.
Mr. Pierce\'s novel, published in 1978, depicts a violent overthrow of the government by a small band of white supremacists who finance themselves through counterfeiting and bank robbery.

FBI investigators have said Mr. McVeigh was a fan of Mr. Pierce\'s book and used it as a blueprint for bombing the Oklahoma City federal building in 1995. The book includes a truck-bombing of FBI headquarters.


Chaim Potok dies at age 73

If you work in a public library you may want to whip up a book display of the late author\'s work. Here are a few links to obits that can be printed and photocopied for patrons.

Baltimore Sun

Philadelphia Inquirer


Washington Post


Jane Austen first editions discovered in Scottish

Charles Davis writes \"First editions of Jane Austen\'s novel Pride And Prejudice have been uncovered at a Scottish castle. The three volumes are expected to fetch between £8,000 and £12,000 when they are auctioned on Friday.

Story at


Bad writing contest honours the dark and stormy

SomeOne writes \"And I use that [Authors] Topic Lightly....
Rephah Berg of Oakland, California, who normally writes slogans for lapel buttons has won the 2002 Bulwer-Lytton Bad Writing Award for a piece which compared a faltering relationship to a balky roll of toilet paper.

Ms Berg\'s submission, reads:

\"On reflection, Angela perceived that her relationship with Tom had always been rocky - not quite a roller-coaster ride but more like when the toilet paper roll gets a little squashed so it hangs crooked and every time you pull some off you can hear the rest going bumpity-bumpity in its holder until you go nuts and push it back into shape, a degree of annoyance that Angela had now almost attained.\"



Michael Moore to Help Librarians

Lee Hadden writes: \" Michael Moore recounted his assistance from librarians in getting his
recent book published, \"Stupid White Men,\" and shows his appreciation by
organizing a group of fellow authors \"...advocating critical library issues
such as better pay, better benefits, sexism and pay equity. Through his
website he is offering videos of his television shows as well as his
previous movies free to all librarians. He is also offering an endowment to
establish a scholarship for minorities who wish to become librarians...\"
Read more about it in the article by Michael Byrnes, \"A Morning With
Michael Moore,\" on page 16 of the ALA Cognotes Annual Highlights found in This PDF.\"


Neil Gaiman likes librarians!

For nearly a year now, I\'ve been reading the journal/blog of one of my favourite authors, Neil Gaiman. It is always interesting and amusing reading anyway, but he was at ALA last week and as a result has written some nice words about librarians (scroll down to the entry from Sunday 16th June).

\"I don\'t think it\'s overstating things to suggest these people are the thin grey line between literacy and barbarism\"

If you like what you read in the journal, I would highly recommend his novels - try last year\'s excellent American Gods. I\'m just disappointed that I\'m not in the US anymore and so couldn\'t be at ALA this year.



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