Most Fridays the Practicing Writing blog shares writing and publishing resources, news, and reflections to peruse over the weekend. But it’s been an excruciating week for so many of us. And frankly, I’ve paid next-to-no attention to garden-variety news from the writing and publishing spheres.
On Wednesday, however, I received an email from Facing History and Ourselves, a Boston-based global nonprofit organization that I’ve admired for many years. The email introduced a “mini-lesson” titled “Processing Attacks in Israel and the Outbreak of War in the Region.”
The resource isn’t perfect. (What resource is?) But one of its segments impressed me as something that, though intended for educators and students, could be clarifying for writers as well, in our work and in the rest of our lives. It’s a section titled “Avoiding Antisemitic and Islamophobic Tropes in Discussing Israeli-Palestinian Conflict.”
- As you might imagine, there’s a lot of new material this week about the ways in which current events are affecting writers’ lives (and livelihoods). A couple of examples: Amy Klein’s “What It’s Like to Promote a Book in the Middle of a Pandemic” and Allison Pottern Hoch’s “So Your Book Launch Has Been Cancelled. Now What?” (and yes, I’ll be sharing with participants in my own book-promo webinar on Sunday).
- Do you know about the #TolstoyTogether project? Presented by A Public Space and Yiyun Li, it’s a free, virtual book club that is tackling Tolstoy’s War and Peace. This is one of those classic novels that I hadn’t yet read. But now, I’m trying.
- Another crisis-related development: Publishers Weekly has unlocked access to many of its resources.
- I’ve been anticipating the release of the HBO adaptation of Philip Roth’s The Plot Against America for months. And the first episode aired on Monday. There’s so much excellent supplementary material to check out surrounding what is truly a major cultural production. You might begin with Janis Freedman Bellow’s essay for Jewish Review of Books. And after you’ve caught that first episode, you’ll learn so much about it through a new podcast dedicated to the series.
- That previous bullet/find is actually cross-posted from the My Machberet blog, where yes, there’s a fresh set of Jewish lit links up today, too. A good mix (I think) of “routine” and atypical, crisis-coping-type offerings.
And again, in case you missed it: Take note of this list of emergency resources for writers: bit.ly/EmergencyResourcesWriters. Please have a good, safe, healthy weekend.