All our news
Scribe Joins E-book Movement
Scribe Publications is the latest publisher to jump into the e-book market. With titles including Dark Roots by Cate Kennedy and Julian Burnside’s Wordwatching, they’ve partnered with eBooks.com, an international portal with large sales in the US.
Scribe publisher Henry Rosenbloom reflected, “While there’s no clear way forward, we’ve come to the conclusion that we know as little about it as anyone else…
Journalism’s Age of Extinction or Curation?
The Times ran a passionate defence of journalism by reflecting back on advice by legendary former editor, Nicholas Tomalin. The article updates Tomalin’s maxim that success in journalism depended on “rat-like cunning, a plausible manner and a little literary ability”. But in the ever-evolving world of online reporting they cite tenacity as the most important quality for young journos.
Over at Wired, however…
Editorial Cage Fight
A New Yorker article revisits one of its great conflicts when founding editor Harold Ross aimed to define his magazine against the rising Time magazine.
While Time famously said it wanted to be read by all Americans, Ross snootily pasted posters all across New York stating his magazine was “not edited for the old lady in Dubuque.”
Time hit back by parodying the New…
Last Word on Budget
As we try to work out if Wayne Swan has delivered a ‘house of cards’ or a budget of ‘heavy lifting’, linguists from Macquarie University have cracked open the budgets 2005-2009 for analysis.
Their report put the language of Swan and former Treasurer Peter Costello under the microscope yielding fascinating results. Costello used the word “I” twice as often as Swan probably to improve…
Dictionary Stands Corrected
News of a Queensland physicist spotting an error in the Oxford English Dictionary (OED) that has remained uncorrected for almost a century has shocked lexicographers.
Dr Stephen Hughes noticed the word siphon is incorrectly defined in reference books because they define a siphon as using atmospheric pressure as its operating force. Hughes points out “It is gravity that moves the fluid in a siphon.”
Twilight’s Baby Boom
If you’re doubting the impact of books on the real world then check the latest list of most popular US baby names.
The New York Times, reports that Stephanie Meyer’s Twilight’s werewolf heartthrob, Jacob, has gone straight to number one with a silver bullet. Skeptics point out that Jacob has been number one for 11 years, but vamp-loving heroine Isabella topped the…
Poetry Prize Beyond Spoken Word
On Friday the Australian Poetry Centre hosted Dreaming in AUSLAN an event that brought together hearing and non-hearing poets from across the country.
The evening saw the awarding of a national poetry prize for poems that appeal to all the senses with a unique perspective. Winner Canberra-based poet Melinda Smith was excited that her poem cast light on an often ignored issue. “My poem…
Emerging Writers seek Reader
On Monday submissions close for the Emerging Writers' Festival’s The Reader, a publication that aims to be both a how-to and an inspiration for new scribes.
This publication’s new editor, Aden Rolfe (pictured), told the Wheeler Centre “I’m looking for creative work as well as non-fiction. And visual work. At the same time, I’m not interested in fiction that simply has a writer…
Booksellers New CEO
There’s a new face at the Australian Booksellers Association (ABA) this week as Joel Becker starts as chief executive.
Becker, a former bookseller and director of the Victorian Writers' Centre (VWC), comes to the role as bookselling is in flux. “The biggest challenges facing booksellers is how the digital revolution, or perhaps evolution, will impact the book industry,” Becker told the Wheeler Centre.
Edinburgh Asks What Makes a City of Literature
Currently visiting Melbourne, Director of Edinburgh UNESCO City of Literature Trust Ali Bowden has been looking at our identity as a bookish burg. She sees Edinburgh UNESCO status as being “about telling the story of Edinburgh as a literary city, in all its rich detail”.
But how does Melbourne define itself against the Scottish city with writerly residents that range from JK Rowling to…
Wolf declares peace with Greer
Naomi Wolf has called Germaine Greer “my total heroine” four years after the two had an on-air spat. Speaking in Sydney, Wolf paid tribute to Greer “as a huge influence for me, in terms of her prose style and in terms of her absolute audacity.”
Back in 2006 things weren’t so rosy when Greer appraised The Treehouse as an expression of Wolf’s love affair…
Romance gets historic product placement
Romance publisher Mills & Boon has introduced a new star to their bodice-rippers: National Trust properties, the Guardian reports. Juliet Landon’s forthcoming Scandalous Innocent uses 400-year-old Ham House as a setting for its romantic interludes with promising interest from readers.
The collaboration between historic estates and the iconic romance publisher helps out the property with 50p from sales at properties going towards their ongoing…
Save Your Words
Whenever a new edition of the dictionary is released there’s lots shiny new words appearing, but what about the losers? To make room, hundreds of old words are pushed out of the dictionary and subsequently from our language.
Enter Save the Words, a site that suggests you adopt an endangered word. It works by clicking on a word, say pugnastics (definition: displays of boxing…
How healthy is the ETS?
Over the weekend, Australia’s political commentators gave their diagnosis for the Rudd Government’s policy go slow on climate change.
In The Australian, Paul Kelly damned Rudd saying the retreat “leaves his credibility in serious doubt and Australia’s policy in untenable suspension”.
Over at New Matilda, Jason Wilson saw some blue sky with Rudd showing “some virtue… by accepting responsibility for things which…
Twitter judges you on your spelling
A New York Times article looks at how John Cusack’s Twitter followers are frowning on the actor’s poor spelling and bad use of predictive text. Several twits have taken matters into their own hands including spelling police who quickly points out spelling fumbles wherever they occur.
But for Cusack the grammar nazis got too much and he blocked several from his Twitter profile. He…
Angels are the new Vampires
Angels are taking over the young adult sector of the book industry with publishers releasing a slew of new stories hoping to tap into the already booming supernatural genre. Two novels that are expected to become best sellers are Angel, the first of a three part series by L.A. Weatherly and Angel’s Fury by Bryony Pearce, both with a strong focus on romance.
Change comes to Washington
The Washington Post says US health-care reform has “provided the first piece of incontestable evidence that Washington has changed,” since Barack Obama’s election in 2008.
The New York Times reports that Republicans are already planning to launch a campaign to repeal the legislation, and to make it a key issue in this year’s mid-term elections.
Outside the US, the news that the congressional vote…
The Wheeler Centre is open
Tonight the Wheeler Centre offically launches its programme with our first ever event at Melbourne’s Town Hall, A Gala Night of Storytelling.
While this event has sold out, you will be able to watch it all online here next week, so there is no need to miss out.
Then from Monday the Wheeler Centre’s 200-seat performance space will open its doors, where we look…
Best Films of the Decade
Paste Magazine lists the 50 best films of the decade.
The London Times newspaper list its 100 best film of the decade, with the number one spot going to Wong Kar-Wai’s In the Mood for Love.
The Washington Post also lists its top movies moments of the noughties.
And the Guardian’s best film of the noughties? Fahrenheit 9/11.
A decade of books
December normally invites all kinds of ‘year in review’ type lists, and this year we have the added excitement of the end of a decade to contend with.
This being the case, we have decide to start listing the lists:
The Washington Post kicks off with a very comprehensive list of books for 2009, dividing and sub-dividing them into every possible genre, until one…