News & Notes is a weekly Saturday post featuring book- and publishing-related news, links to interesting articles and opinion pieces, and other cool stuff
- Slightly fewer Americans are reading print books, a new Pew survey finds (Pew Research Center) Check the article out; there are more detailed graphs and analysis, but it’s not a long read. (The video above is from the Pew Research Center.)
- Science Proves Reading to Kids Really Does Change Their Brains… and the study has the MRIs to prove it. (Huffington Post)
- A Rough Six Months for Big Book Publishers as sales of print books stabilized, sales of ebooks fell slightly, and overall earnings fell. (Publishers Weekly)
- The Center for Fiction announced the 2016 First Novel Prize shortlist. (Center for Fiction)
- NEH to Endow More Than $4 Million in Publishing Grants, mostly to authors in the “public scholar” program. (Publishers Weekly)
- Benefactor leaves $1.2 million to a Vermont public library. No one knew he was wealthy; he lived frugally and never spoke of his successful investments. His estate totalled almost $8 million; most of it goes to the library and to a nearby hospital.
- Enter an Archive of 6,000 Historical Children’s Books, All Digitized and Free to Read Online (OpenCulture) The article talks about the development of children’s literature; although it’s short, it’s interesting. The archive in question is the Baldwin Library of Historical Children’s Literature, part of the George A. Smathers Libraries at the University of Florida. They have scanned pretty much their entire collection of 19th-century children’s books, which means you get the illustrations as well as the text. The scans are very high quality, and the built-in reader app makes it easy to read a book once you’ve found it. Finding it is a bit more difficult, however. The site is not as intuitive and user-friendly as most websites today. I highly recommend that if you want to do a search or read a particular book, you do so in a separate tab, since getting back to the Baldwin Library home page is not always easy.
- Don’t Look Away: Fighting Sexual Harassment in the SciFi/Fantasy Community (Jim C. Hines, for i09)
For Writers & Bloggers
- Four Ways to Ground Your Fantasy Novel (Zanzibar 7, on the NaNoWriMo blog)
- Shelf Control, a “Waiting on Wednesday”-style meme for people who want to highlight and read the books they already own. I could really use this one! Bookshelf Fantasies announced it in this post a year ago, but if you want to join in, just check her blog on Wednesdays.
Book & Movie Announcements
- One Week in the Library graphic novella will be published by Image Comics in December. (GalleyCat) The book is set in a magical library, and will ” use comics, infographics, prose, and poetry to play with the graphic medium and explore the multivalent world of living narrative.” Sounds interesting!
- BBC One will adapt 8 Agatha Christie books for television over the next four years, including “Witness for the Prosecution” (currently filming), Ordeal by Innocence, Death Comes as the End (set in ancient Egypt), and The ABC Murders. In the latter case, I’m not sure they can improve on the David Suchet version (he’s the definitive Poirot in my opinion), but some of the others haven’t been adapted before, or not in the last 30 or 40 years. (BBC News) According to Deadline, Fox is also planning a big-screen version of “Witness for the Prosecution;” Ben Affleck will reportedly both direct and star in the film. At a guess, Fox’s version will update the material.
- Zachary Quinto to Narrate New John Scalzi Novella The Dispatcher, an exclusive release through Audible. (Tor.com)
- The 10 Steamiest Romance Novels Every Woman Should Read, according to romance author Sarah Maclean. (Cosmopolitan, of course!)
- 11 book pairs that match your childhood favorites with what you should read now (Modern Mrs. Darcy blog)
Really Cool / Just for Fun
- Want to know how long it will take to read your entire TBR pile or list? Give this TBR Time Calculator a try! (Read It Forward)
(Sorry; I couldn’t resist!)
That’s it for this week!