NPR, Patti Sings for Dylan, Tech News & More! Your Weekly Lit News Roundup

NPR’s 2016 Book Concierge Released 

On December 6th, National Public Radio released its annual guide from staff and critics. This app offers a wide range of filters to help you move through more than 300 titles, and includes detailed recommendations and links on where to buy the books — including indie bookstore and library links. Holiday shopping made easy!

Nobel Awards Dinner Commences Without Dylan

In the absence of the Nobel winner, Patti Smith sang A Hard Rain’s A-Gonna Fall and the US Ambassador to Sweden recited Dylan’s acceptance speech at the annual awards dinner held historically on December 10th each year. In a response to criticism from the international community, a member of the Swedish academy and literary critic Horace Engdahl said, “seemed daring only beforehand and already seems obvious.” For more details on the night, and a moving video of Patti Smith, click here.

Jewish Book Council’s New Literary Journal is Now Available



Paper Brigade, the first literary journal from the Jewish Book Council is named “in honor of the group of writers and intellectuals in the Vilna Ghetto who rescued thousands of Jewish books and documents from destruction by the Nazis.”

Volume One includes an interview with Jonathan Safran Foer, a history of Yiddish pulp fiction, photography, excerpts from upcoming novels, commentary, and more.

You can order Paper Brigade through the Jewish Book Council’s site here.



A bevy of digital technology news this week…

On Literature, Gaming, and Playgoing

Smith College Provost and Dean of Faculty Katherine Rowe spoke this week at Indiana University, Bloomington, as part of the Wertheim Lecture series by the Department of Comparative Literature. She talked about the role of social media and gaming, drawing comparisons to theater-going and playgoing, and how it can help people understand and experience literature. Likening games such as Minecraft and other participatory types of games like The Sims that provide a collective experience, Rowe said, “Critical game studies is a blossoming field and rich array of studies.”

New Paper Tablet Mimics the Real Thing

A new type of gadget called reMarkable is coming into the marketplace later in 2017. The company explains that it gives you paper-like reading, writing, and sketching, but with digital powers. It’s definitely not cheap (preorder for $380), but it sure looks like a fascinating product. Wow.


More fun tech stories here:

Spherical Robots Teaching Literature? 

Investigating the “locational and technological future of the book.”

Any exciting stories you would like to share? Feel free to comment below. We would love to create an ongoing conversation for the literary community on the latest and greatest things going on in your local literary world. From the U.S. to all around the globe, our voices are stronger together. Let’s lift each other up by supporting and showcasing  as many diverse voices as possible.

Laurel Dowswell is the Features Editor at Change Seven. Her short story “I Am the Eggman” was nominated for the 2016 Pushcart Prize. She was a copy editor for an independent feminist newspaper in Santa Fe, NM, after being raised and educated in Florida. She lives and writes in Georgia, just outside of Atlanta with her son. She is currently working on a novel filled with oil paintings, family drama, and the spectrum of sexuality. Follow her on twitter @laurels_idea.

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