Authors

Joseph Anton: A Memoir

On February 14, 1989, Valentine’s Day, Salman Rushdie was telephoned by a BBC journalist and told that he had been “sentenced to death” by the Ayatollah Khomeini. For the first time he heard the word fatwa. His crime? To have written a novel called The Satanic Verses: A Novel, which was accused of being “against Islam, the Prophet and the Quran.”

So begins the extraordinary story of how a writer was forced underground, moving from house to house, with the constant presence of an armed police protection team. He was asked to choose an alias that the police could call him by. He thought of writers he loved and combinations of their names; then it came to him: Conrad and Chekhov—Joseph Anton. -- Read More

Elif Shafak: The politics of fiction

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An Open Letter To Wikipedia from Author Philip Roth

NEW YORK — Philip Roth vs. Wikipedia? No contest.

The prize-winning author says he’s furious with the online encyclopedia over its entry about his novel “The Human Stain.”

In a letter posted Friday by The New Yorker, Roth says Wikipedia editors had said the book was inspired by the life of author Anatole Broyard.

Not true, Roth responded. The character was based on the late Melvin Turin, of Princeton University.

Roth says he privately reported the error to Wikipedia and was told, to his amazement, that he needed a secondary source. So Roth made his case to the public.

His agent, Andrew Wylie, confirmed the letter was written by Roth.

By Friday afternoon, the Wikipedia entry had been updated to include Roth’s comments and to note that some had “incorrectly speculated” about the novel’s origins.

Author Judy Blume says had breast cancer surgery

Judy Blume, the author of young adult books "Are You There God? It's Me, Margaret" and "Tiger Eyes," was diagnosed with breast cancer this summer and underwent a mastectomy, she said on her blog on Wednesday.

Blume, 74, one of America's most famous authors of young adult fiction, said that a month after her surgery she is recovering in New York. She also described the shock of learning from her doctor in June that she had breast cancer, given that she had no family history of the disease.

Ray Bradbury: Why NASA named Curiosity landing site after SciFi writer

NASA began a new chapter of its Martian chronicle Aug. 22 when the agency named its Mars rover Curiosity's landing site after the late science fiction author Ray Bradbury.

Curiosity's landing site inside Mars' vast Gale Crater was rechristened "Bradbury Landing" to honor the iconic writer's legacy and dedication to Mars exploration, NASA officials said.

Ray Bradbury died in June at age 91. His first book, "The Martian Chronicles," paints a vivid picture of the human exploration of Mars through a series of short stories. The book was published in 1950 and later adapted into a TV series and video game.

Full article

Note: The landing was on Aug 5th but they renamed the landing site on August 22nd because that is Mr. Bradbury's birthday.

Novelist and Bookstore Owner Ann Patchett Winner of Women's National Book Award

The Women’s National Book Association has announced that novelist Ann Patchett has been selected to receive the 2012-2013 Women’s National Book Award. According to the Association’s website, the biennial award is given to “a living American woman who derives part or all of her income from books and allied arts, and who has done meritorious work in the world of books beyond the duties or responsibilities of her profession or occupation.”

Ann Patchett, whose most recent novel is State of Wonder (HarperCollins, 2011), is the bestselling author of numerous works of fiction and nonfiction, including the novel Bel Canto, which won both the PEN/Faulkner and Orange Prize in 2002. Patchett’s work has also garnered such accolades as the New York Times Notable Book of the Year, the Janet Heidinger Kafka Prize, and the BookSense Book of the Year Award; and has been a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award. Her articles and essays have appeared in the New York Times Magazine, Harper’s, the Atlantic, the Washington Post, and Vogue.

In 2011, Patchett and publishing veteran Karen Hayes opened Parnassus Books, an independent bookstore in Nashville, Tennessee, after the last remaining bookstores in the city had closed their doors. Patchett has since become a nationally recognized advocate for independent bookselling, and this year was named one of Time Magazine’s “100 Most Influential People in the World.” Poets & Writers reports.

Uncle Ray’s Dystopia

Ray Bradbury didn’t just extrapolate the evolution of gadgetry; he foresaw how it would stunt and deform our psyches.

Op-ed in the NYT

The Press's Ayn Rand Obsession

This week, the media decided that the juiciest line of inquiry about the GOP’s newly minted vice presidential nominee, Paul Ryan, was how deep his allegiance was to the late novelist Ayn Rand. Brooke talks to Slate political reporter Dave Weigel about Ryan’s relationship to Rand.

MP3 from radio show - On the Media

Page at the - On the Media - website with story.

See my general commentary about political posts on LISNEWS.

Authors destroy legal e-book lending

Roughly two weeks ago, the popular e-book lending site LendInk was taken offline thanks to a group of terrified authors who couldn’t be bothered to read the fine print. LendInk was a website dedicated to helping book lovers lend books to each other through features implemented by Amazon and Barnes & Noble. The site’s only purpose was to serve as a front end — it hosted no e-book files, linked no torrents, and never directed users to a file locker.

Religious Publisher Thomas Nelson Pulls Jefferson Book

Last month the History News Network voted David Barton’s book “The Jefferson Lies” the “least credible history book in print.” Now the book’s publisher, Thomas Nelson, has decided to stop publishing and distributing it.

The book, which argues that Thomas Jefferson was an enthusiastic orthodox Christian who saw no need for a wall of separation between church and state, has attracted plenty of criticism since it appeared in April, with an introduction by Glenn Beck. But the death knell came after Jay W. Richards, a senior fellow at the Discovery Institute and the author, with James Robison, of “Indivisible: Restoring Faith, Family and Freedom Before It’s Too Late,” began to have doubts and started an investigation.

More from The New York Times.

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