Wednesday Web Browser: Free Trip to Texas Book Festival, Hope Lives for Rejected Work, and New Writing Prompts

Would you enjoy a free trip to the Texas Book Festival (which takes place November 1 and 2)? Check out some Festival prize possibilities here (but do it soon–deadline is October 3). NB: Open only to legal residents of the 50 United States and the District of Columbia.
Poets & Writers reports that writers who have recently received rejection letters from Academy Chicago press with no personalized information included may still have reason to be hopeful–there’s been a “bookkeeper bungle”–and should contact the press.
I don’t know about you, but I can always use some new writing prompts. So I’m glad to discover this concise list on The Writer magazine’s Web site.

The Wednesday Web Browser: Poetry Events, Award for Adichie, and A Teaching Writer

Robert Lee Brewer helps us find poetry events in a multitude of locations.
It has been nearly two years since I read Chimamanda Adichie’s Half of a Yellow Sun. That book left quite an impression on me, and I was happy to learn this week that Adichie has won a MacArthur Fellowship. Congratulations to her!
David Gessner writes about his experience as a writer-who-teaches in the latest New York Times magazine.

Creative Writing at CUNY

If you’re in the New York City area, please do visit this list of literary events taking place on the various campuses of The City University of New York. (As you know, I’m a CUNY employee, and part of my job includes updating this list.) And if you’re looking for some low-cost, high-quality writing programs (undergraduate, graduate, and certificate), please consult this page as well. (P.S.–You’ll find my latest CUNY Distinguished Professor Profile, this time focusing on art historian and biographer Gail Levin, right here.)

The Wednesday Web Browser: Styron Revisited, MFA Event in New York, and My Other Blog

It’s no secret to this blog’s readers that I’m a fan of the work of William Styron. Which is why I was particularly interested to find Jess Row’s essay, “Styron’s Choice,” revisiting a literary controversy from the late 1960s.
If you’re in the New York area and thinking about an MFA, you might want to check out this event, slated for tomorrow night and featuring Kimiko Hahn, Distinguished Professor in the Queens College-CUNY MFA Program, and Robert Polito, who directs the Writing Program at The New School. ($5 “suggested donation”)
Don’t forget to check in once in awhile over on my other blog, where I focus on literature, culture, and, occasionally, politics with a distinctly Jewish emphasis. The most recent post discusses the fabulous, don’t-miss film “A Secret” (“Un Secret”), based on Philippe Grimbert’s roman à clef.

Celebrating Marie Brenner’s Apples & Oranges

As common as book parties may be in this city, I’m rarely invited to any. Which, given my less-than-stellar small talk skills, is probably a good thing.

But this evening I will be attending a celebration for Marie Brenner’s latest, Michiko Kakutani-lauded book, a memoir titled Apples & Oranges: My Brother and Me, Lost and Found. And I can’t wait.

So how did this event appear on my calendar? Well, the party’s host is my mom’s beloved cousin, P. (P.’s mother and my Grandma Rose were sisters). And through her father, P. is also Marie’s cousin. I spent nearly all my childhood Thanksgivings and Passovers at the Westchester home of P.’s parents, and that’s where I first met Marie and her husband and daughter, and began to learn about and follow her work (it’s the reason I began subscribing to Vanity Fair). So I was of course very excited to read the Kakutani review last week; I’m even more excited for this evening’s event.

For now, though, please allow me to refer you to Marie’s Web site, where you can learn more about Apples & Oranges, and about its author.