Finds for Writers

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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.”

Screenshot of text published beneath "Avoiding Antisemitic and Islamophobic Tropes in Discussing Israeli-Palestinian Conflict." Text taken from the website linked within the post.
  • As we mark the 75th anniversary of the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, The New York Times “asked Yoko Ogawa, an award-winning Japanese author, to reflect on the literature unleashed by the atomic bombings.” The resulting article was translated by Stephen Snyder.
  • Matthew Desmond’s Evicted has been on my Goodreads Want-to-Read shelf for a long time. This week, Franny Zhang’s essay for the Ploughshares blog on the use of the third-person perspective in this book reminded me that I need to prioritize reading it.
  • “It’s Time to Radically Rethink Online Book Events,” argues Kate Reed Petty over on Electric Literature. And she offers some suggestions.
  • “Calling all grammar nerds and punctuation junkies!” You may want to check out the STET! Game Night event, on Wednesday, August 12 at 8PM ET on Zoom. Featured participants: Connie Schultz (author of Daughters of Erietown), Amy Bloom (author of White Houses), Lisa Lucas (publisher at Pantheon and Schocken Books), and Preet Bharara (former United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, and author of Doing Justice). Game will be hosted and refereed by Random House’s copy chief Benjamin Dreyer (author of Dreyer’s English).
  • And of course, you’ll find a fresh set of Jewish literary links posted over on the My Machberet blog —including a sneak peek into a no-fee poetry contest that I’ll mention again on Monday in the “Markets/Jobs” post. But why not take a look right now? Maybe you’ll want to get to work on your entry over the weekend.

Have a good weekend!

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3 thoughts on “Finds for Writers

  1. Erika – In case you missed this: Emma Lazarus challenged social conventions, and used her voice, pen and actions to advance her ideas. Just as Emma responded to the issues of her time by writing a poem that addressed American identity, AJHS invites you to write your own poem that speaks to your vision of America.

    Winners will be honored in October of 2020 at the Emma Lazarus Statue of Liberty Award Ceremony and receive a cash prize of $1,000. All submissions will be preserved in the AJHS Archives, next to the collection of Emma Lazarus.

    1. Erika Dreifus says:

      I didn’t miss it! That’s the contest referenced in the final find!

  2. Oh, then I missed your mention – …it did seem to me unlikely that you would’ve missed it. I’ve sent it on to some poet friends…

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