News & Notes is a weekly Saturday post featuring book- and publishing-related news, links to interesting articles and opinion pieces, and other cool stuff
Clive Cussler, author of the popular Dirk Pitt alt-history thrillers, died Feb. 24, 2020, at the age of 88. His writing career spanned over five decades and more than 20 bestsellers, including Raise the Titanic! and Pacific Vortex. In recent years, he has collaborated with a number of coauthors, including his son Dirk (for whom his protagonist is named.) His final novel, Journey of the Pharaohs, will be released this March. In 1997, Cussler’s nonfiction book The Sea Hunters earned him a Doctor of Letters from the Maritime College of the State University of New York.
Following the success of 1976’s Raise the Titanic, Cussler founded NUMA, named for his fictional National Underwater and Marine Agency. The real-life NUMA seeks to “[preserve] our maritime heritage through the discovery, archaeological survey and conservation of shipwreck artifacts.” Cussler headed the organization until his death.
- What the New Coronavirus Means for Publishing (Publishers Weekly) A rescheduled book fair, publishers curtailing travel, and delayed production schedules are just some of the effects.
- Americans Begin Pulling Out of LBF (Publishers Weekly) American publishers are reluctant to send their people to the London Book Fair (Mar. 10-12) due to growing concern about COVID-19.
- Mass Contract Cancellations at Henery Press (Writer Beware)
- RWA released the independent ethics audit report on their handling of the ethics complaints against Courtney Milan.
- The Nebula finalists for 2019 have been announced.
- SFWA Statement from the President on Goodreads: Mary Robinette Kowal, president of the SFWA, released a statement on the organization’s communications with Goodreads regarding a harassment campaign against certain authors. (These were not authentic reader reviews, but a series of troll (fake) accounts apparently set up expressly for the purpose of harassing these authors.)
- Black Romance Novels Matter Too. Particularly historical romance novels. (Carole V. Bell, for Shondaland)
- The Memorial Johanna Lindsey Deserves is really about how mainstream obituaries like those in the New York Times dismiss and belittle women writers, especially romance writers. (Jennifer Prokop, Kirkus)
- How I managed to raise a little bookworm in the age of smartphones and tablets (Donna Ferguson, The Guardian)
- Welcome to Annotation Nation. Joe M. of Black Sail Books talks about why and how to annotate your books. Personally, I’m still too reluctant to write in most of my books, but I could see doing it with certain books.
- If you’re looking to write more diverse characters, but don’t want to make mistakes or offend, Writing the Other has a whole series of free resources, web classes, and webinars on writing diversely. The organization is helmed by Nisi Shawl and K. Tempest Bradford.
Cool, Fun, and Awesome
- Physics undergrads crunched numbers for Star Trek’s tribble problem, as seen on the recent Trek Short, “The Trouble with Edward”: How long would it take for tribbles to completely fill the Enterprise? (Answer: 4.5 days.) (Ars Technica)