The Ravens Revisited

The Raven Poetry Circle at The New-York Historical Society

Throughout the Great Depression, the Raven Poetry Circle sold poems in Washington Square Park and hosted readings in their apartments.

In honor of that band of scrappy poets, we’ve put together a virtual reading with writers from around the country.

You can watch the first installment below, and you can sign up for the next reading on Sunday, May 17, 2020, from 5-7 PM Pacific (8-10 Eastern). 

Continue Reading

The Deep End

I’m proud to say you can now pre-order my new book, The Deep End: The Literary Scene in the Great Depression and Today.

I’ve worked on this project for the last ten years, exploring the different ways writers survived the Great Depression. Here’s more from the OR Books catalog:

“It’s tough being an author these days, and it’s getting harder. A recent Authors Guild survey showed that the median income for all published authors in 2017, based solely on book-related activities, was just over $3,000, down more than 20% from eight years previously.

“Roughly 25% of authors earned nothing at all. Price cutting by retailers, notably Amazon, has forced publishers to pay their writers less. A stagnant economy, with only the rich seeing significant income increases, has hit writers along with everyone else.

Continue Reading

Artificial Intelligence & Writing

Photo by Sergi Kabrera on Unsplash

Can you imagine was it like to hear a synthesizer for the first time? To be one of the first musicians to make music with this technology that has changed the way we think about composition and sound?

Writers have a similar opportunity right now — to be among the first to experiment with remarkable advances in text generation and artificial intelligence.

I’ve been reporting on how you can use these new tools in your own writing. Here are some recent posts to check out…

Continue Reading

Publishers Weekly Stories

I am the West Coast correspondent for Publishers Weekly, and I like to share my stories on this page…

Formerly Self-Published Italian Author Lands Netflix Series

27-year-old Antonio Dikele Distefano is the child of Angolan immigrants, and his formerly self-published novels explore the lives the children of immigrants. “I show Italian kids that there is not only one way of being black and that our reality is different from what is shown in TV … Second-generation children born in Italy to African parents who moved to Italy are isolated and considered suspicious by the Italian kids.”

The Netflix Literary Connection
The streaming service is on a book-buying spree as it seeks more content for its ever-growing global subscriber base. I interviewed a few executives at Netflix about how adaptation works at the company.

Community Writing Sites Draw Hollywood Attention
In their search for material, producers are forging new relationships with online platforms. From the Writing Prompts subreddit to Wattpad to CryptTV, I spoke with the people leading the best community writing platforms.

Steven Rowley Tackles Jackie O’s Book Biz Years In His New Novel
Steven Rowley’s The Editor tells the story of a struggling writer whose novel is acquired by Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis. I profiled Rowley on the book’s release, exploring a couple literary sites in Los Angeles at the same time.

Continue Reading

Free Born Reading Newsletter

school-kids-on-rug-listening-to-books-black-whiteIn Born Reading: Bringing Up Bookworms in a Digital Age, I share hundreds of books and apps that parents can use with kids. Now that the book is published, I still find great new apps and books every week.

To keep parents and kids informed, I launched a free newsletter for parents. Follow the link below to subscribe for free book, eBook, app and craft recommendations every issue.

Continue Reading