When Friends Become Characters

When Friends Become Characters

When I decided to write a book about the months I spent working as a field assistant for a tiny bird observatory nestled in the mountains of west central Sweden, I said it would be a book about bird science, mythology, language, and place. I didn’t really think about the fact that it would also have to be a book about people. But as anyone more astute could have predicted, the people who staffed the …

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Upset Alert: Charlie Hunnam Exits ‘Fifty Shades’ Cast

Upset Alert: Charlie Hunnam Exits ‘Fifty Shades’ Cast

  Five weeks after angry ‘Fifty Shades‘ fans demanded a recasting of the film, actor Charlie Hunnam has announced that he will not be playing Christian Grey. Hunnam told producers that his television work made it difficult for him to prepare for the role. Universal Pictures is now on a hunt for a new male lead. Filming has been postponed. Your thoughts?

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McDonalds to Give Away Books Instead of Toys in November

McDonalds to Give Away Books Instead of Toys in November

Welp, it looks like McDonald’s is officially taking a stand for literacy. The fast food giant has announced that from November 1-14, it will replace the signature “Happy Meal toy” with one of four original children’s books. They plan to give away more than 20 million copies during the two week period, which also coincides with National Literacy Day on November 1. As part of the launch of Happy Meal Books, McDonalds will also partner …

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Mythmaking 2.0: An Interview with Kate Bernheimer

Mythmaking 2.0: An Interview with Kate Bernheimer

Last month, I had the pleasure of reviewing xo Orpheus, a new anthology edited by Kate Bernheimer that explores Greek myths from a 21st century perspective. One thing about the collection that really stood out to me was the idea of humanity as a God itself and how that concept repeatedly manifested itself in each story. In a recent email interview, I had chance to chat with Kate Bernheimer a bit more about this theme …

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Alice Munro Wins Nobel Prize in Literature

Alice Munro Wins Nobel Prize in Literature

Canadian writer, Alice Munro, has won the 2013 Nobel Prize for literature. On Thursday, the Swedish Academy called Munro a “master of the contemporary short story” Munro, 82, is the 13th woman to win the prize. The Nobel Prize is the most prestigious and lucrative literary prize in the world and  awarded based on an entire body of work, rather than a specific novel or collection. Munro is the author of 14 collections of short stories, including …

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Shout Her Lovely Name: An Interview With Natalie Serber

Shout Her Lovely Name: An Interview With Natalie Serber

I discovered Natalie Serber‘s debut collection of short stories, Shout Her Lovely Name, on accident when I was reading the comments section of this very blog a view weeks ago. And I must say, I am so happy that Best Damn reader Robin Mera recommended it to me. Shout Her Lovely Name is Serber’s debut fiction collection about a mother and daughter who navigate through crucial–and heartbreaking–moments in their life. I recently had a chance to …

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Bestselling Authors Offer Free Workshops via WritersWebTV

Bestselling Authors Offer Free Workshops via WritersWebTV

Got this super-cool news tip in my inbox on Monday. WritersWebTV, a new Irish start-up, is offering free, online writing workshops featuring international bestselling writers and industry experts. The first workshop, Writing for Children and Young Adults featured international YA bestseller Meg Rosoff (author of How I Live Now) as well as picture book authors Marie-Louise Fitzpatrick and Michael Emberley, Emmy-award winning director of Brown Bag Films, Norton Virgien, literary agent Polly Nolan, and bestselling YA and fantasy author …

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In Memoriam: Author Tom Clancy Dies at 66

In Memoriam: Author Tom Clancy Dies at 66

  It’s a sad day in the literary world. Bestselling author Tom Clancy died today at age 66 in Baltimore. Clancy is the author of several famous novels that have been adapted into film including The Hunt for Red October, Patriot Games and The Sum of All Fears. His last book, Command Authority, will be released this December by Putnam. Penguin executive David Shanks had this to say about Clancy’s passing: I’m deeply saddened by Tom’s passing. …

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Guess Who’s Writing a Memoir…..

Guess Who’s Writing a Memoir…..

Yep, you guessed it. The myth, the legend, the Ron Burgundy is officially coming to a bookstore near you. Crown Archetype has announced that the release of Burgundy’s memoir Let Me Off at the Top: My Classy Life and Other Musings will be published on Nov. 19. In the book’s hilarious author note on Amazon, Burgundy provides some insight into his decision to write his memoirs: It took me eight years to write this book. The …

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Brilliant: Free “Pacemaker” Software Helps Writers Reach Wordcount Goals

Brilliant: Free “Pacemaker” Software Helps Writers Reach Wordcount Goals

Although NaNoWriMo is still a month out, writers looking to increase their word count stamina will be excited to know that there is a free web tool that can help them do just that. Pacemaker, built by web developer Sarah Williams, allows writers to create a schedule based on their word count goals. This schedule can be customized based on approach and/or intensity. For example, writers can choose a “steady” approach where the same number …

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