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Malcolm R. Campbell's World

Book Bits: #TwitterFiction, Moaning Myrtle, Tom Brokaw, ‘The Boy in the Striped Pajamas’

BookBitsWe’ve been told “silence is golden.” There are times when there’s way too much talking, too much noise, and too much spoiling of a good moment with sounds that don’t belong there.

Silence can also cover a multitude of sins. Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie suggested in her PEN speech that “The fear of causing offense, the fear of ruffling the careful layers of comfort, becomes a fetish.” Are the social media and other forces keeping us from saying what needs to be said? (Item 4)

  1. News: The #TwitterFiction Festival is reinventing short stories for millennials, by M. J. Franklin – “Writers, it might be time to put down your pens and pick up your keyboards — The #TwitterFiction festival is back!”  Mashable
  2. AlexandrianFeature: Resurrecting An Extinct Novel: On Rereading ‘Alexandrian Summer,’ by Yitzhak Gormezano Goren – “When Alexandrian Summer was first published in Israel in 1978 by Am Oved, the country’s most prestigious publisher at that time, the back cover boasted the following statement: “An achievement and innovation in Hebrew Literature.” I was living then in the U.S. and had nothing to do with that hazardous claim.”  Lit Hub
  3. News: J.K. Rowling Reveals Moaning Myrtle’s Full Name On Twitter, by  Maryann Yin – “Harry Potter series author J.K. Rowling has unveiled a surprising revelation on Twitter. When one fan, known as @HotmHayles, asked her about the full name of a minor (but memorable) character named Moaning Myrtle, Rowling responded: ‘Myrtle Elizabeth Warren.'”  Galley Cat
  4. Chimamanda


    Viewpoint: ‘Fear of causing offence becomes a fetish,’ by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie – “‘No one is being murdered or hauled off by the American government to prison for writing a novel,’ said Nigerian author Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie in her Arthur Miller Freedom to Write lecture, which closed the PEN World Voices festival in New York Sunday night. Though couched in a thoughtful set of anecdotes, Adichie had sharp words for her mostly young and vocal audience about the ‘codes of silence’ that govern American life.”  The Guardian

  5. Feature: How to Quit Your Day Job to Write: Next Steps to Becoming a Full-Time TV & Film Writer, by Cary Tusan – “Every day I set goals, or intentions, for myself for the day that I physically write down. I might not always achieve those goals, but that’s okay. Some of the goals are future goals beyond today. Setting intentions has been helpful for me when I do them on a daily basis. (They’re presented by everyone from Deepak Chopra to Wayne Dyer.) Intention plays right into having patience and faith about the timing of everything.”  SSN
  6. luckylifeReview: “A Lucky Life Interrupted,” by Tom Brokaw, reviewed by Sharon Peters – “Tom Brokaw, perennial journalist and information-sharer, remains that — even now, when he’s 75, sort of retired, and living with what doctors say is incurable cancer.”  USA Today
  7. News: Booksellers, Librarians Push for Passage of USA Freedom Act, by Rachel Deahl – “The coalition of booksellers, authors, readers and librarians that make up the Campaign for Reader Privacy has pressed the House Judiciary Committee to pass the bi-partisan USA Freedom Act of 2015. In a statement about the group’s support, the coalition said the bill will ‘restore some privacy safeguards to the government’s surveillance activities.'”  Publishers Weekly
  8. Danielewski


    Interview: Mark Danielewski (“The Familiar: One Rainy Day in May”),“The author behind the groundbreaking best-seller House Of Leaves is now releasing a new novel called The Familiar, Volume 1: One Rainy Day In May — and that’s volume one of, yes, a planned 27. (Volume 2 comes out in October.)”  NPR

  9. News: Maryland’s Annapolis Bookstore Launches Sponsorship Program – “The Annapolis Bookstore, Annapolis, Md., has launched a sponsorship program that aims to sign up 300 patrons and raise $50,000 to be able to ‘make the business sustainable by offering online shopping, develop larger events and make the store more of a venue space,’ according to the Capital Gazette.”  Shelf Awareness
  10. stripedPJReview: “The Boy in Striped Pajamas,” by John Boyne, reviewed by James Webb – “The Boy in the Striped Pajamas is an unusual story, one of the most difficult and disturbing a teen will ever read. It is the story of an event seared into the fabric of history. It is a fable told through the voice of a child, but it is not for children, and this is not just any child.”  Book Page
  11. How To: How to destroy the pacing of your story, by Malcolm R. Campbell – “Pacing can help a writer’s work or destroy it. Sometimes, it’s a matter of personal taste. If you read your stuff aloud, you’ll hear the pacing as surely as you hear the rhythm of a song on the radio. The pace not only needs to feel right, it needs to make logical sense.”  Malcolm’s Round Table
  12. Looking Back: “On this day in 1883 Mark Twain’s Life on the Mississippi was published. Much of the book had appeared as a popular magazine series years earlier; Twain saw an opportunity not only for profitable recycling but for revisiting the world of his youth after twenty-one years away — to do research, and ‘to see the river again, and the steamboats, and such of the boys as might be left.'” Today In Literature

KIndle cover 200x300Book Bits is compiled by Malcolm R. Campbell, author of “Conjure Woman’s Cat,” a 1950s-era novel about folk magic and the KKK in the Florida Panhandle.


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2 thoughts on “Book Bits: #TwitterFiction, Moaning Myrtle, Tom Brokaw, ‘The Boy in the Striped Pajamas’

  1. I saw a Dateline special on Tom Brokaw (and his book) just the other night. Very moving.

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