Reading Without Walls, Mapping Literature, Rainku & More! Your Weekly Lit News Roundup by Laurel Dowswell

Gene Luen Yang Launches ‘Reading Without Walls’


The National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature is launching ‘Reading Without Walls‘  at the Library of Congress event today in Washington, D.C. The program challenges young people to read books with characters that are outside their realm of experiences.

“Reading is a fantastic way to open your minds and hearts to new people, places, and ideas.Through reading, I’ve met new friends, learned new facts and become a better person.” – Gene Luen Yang

New Method to Map the Evolution of Literature Developed

Through the work of humanists, biologists, and computer scientists at the Quantitative Criticism Lab,  a new method of mapping relationships of texts and tracing an overall cultural evolution of literature has been developed. The collaboration includes computational analysis, machine learning, and more. The recently published paper was funded in part by a 2016 National Endowment for the Humanities grant and the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation New Directions Fellowship.

“Rainku” Pours Over Vancouver, Washington

In their celebration of National Poetry Month, poets and other lovers of poetry with Vancouver’s Downtown Association are using water sensitive paint and stencils on sidewalks in the city to showcase haiku, or “rainku,” and other types of poetry to appear when it rains. The city is showcasing the work of seventeen local poets.

CBC Short Story Prize Longlist Announced

shortstoryprize_2017_banner-thumb-620x100-415882Twenty-eight writers have been selected to be on the longlist for the $6,000 prize from the Canada Council for the Arts. The winner will also receive a ten-day writing residency at the Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity, and publication in Air Canada enRoute Magazine. The announcement of the shortlist will be on April 12th.

But wait, there’s more!

A multi-book deal for Joe and Jill Biden.

Moleskine’s cool writing tool.

9 feminist poetry collections recommended by Bustle.

Lincoln, George Saunders, writing, and grief.

As we continue to celebrate National Poetry Month, here is our video pick of the week published by The Root on April 3rd. Here is a presentation of Maya Angelou’s poem The Black Family Pledge. 


Laurel Dowswell is the Features Editor at Change Seven. Her short story “I Am theEggman” 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, a lot of red wine, and the spectrum of sexuality. Follow her on twitter @laurels_idea.

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