Around the Web: Max Allan Collins named grandmaster by MWA, more

Every once in a while I like to pass along links to some of the articles on reading and writing I encounter in my Internet travels. So, herewith is my latest roundup for your reading pleasure:

photo by G. Robert Frazier

Just some of the many Max Allan Collins mysteries in my collection.

Author Max Allan Collins has been named a grandmaster by the Mystery Writers of America, the highest honor for mystery writing. He’ll pick up the award in April.  Collins has written hundreds of stories and dozens of novels in his long career, from original adventures to movie novelizations. His Quarry novels are the basis for a new series on Cinemax. The full list of MWA award winners is here.

Small, independent publishers take the risk of publishing new authors and discovering new talent, often to only see the big houses snatch them away once their names are made. The Guardian explores the relationship between big and small publishers in this interesting article.

Just read this fascinating article about how schools are teaching children wrong when it comes to writing.

Culture Trip has a fascinating compendium of literary city guides, spotlighting notable literary landmarks, bookstores, writers and more from cities around the world. It’s like going on a book tour without leaving home. Definitely worth checking out.

Will Schwalbe writes that reading books remains one of the best ways to engage with the world, become a better person and understand life’s questions, big and small, according to an excerpt from his new book, Books for Living.

Growing up surrounded by books was as magical as you can imagine for Ronald Clark and his daughter, who lived above a New York Library branch in the 1940s.

I missed this article when it first came out in July, so I’m including it here: Why Calvin & Hobbes is great literature.

NPR featured an interesting column on how to find the facts in the face of false news.

The House Judiciary Committee has released a policy proposal backing the creation of an autonomous Copyright Office, with control over its own budget and technology needs. Currently, the Copyright Office is overseen by the Librarian of Congress.

Authors United, the authors group formed by author Douglas Preston in 2014 to support writers caught in the e-book discount dispute between Amazon and Hachette Book Group, is being disbanded. Preston urged AU writers “to throw their support behind the Authors Guild as it is “the only organization out there with the resources, experience, and energy to fight for authors’ rights—and to defend the literary culture of our country.”

Jane Friedman has collected her own list of best writing articles. Here’s an article from Screenwriting U on ways to name your characters. While all the articles are helpful from a technique standpoint, this article from Script Magazine gets to the heart of how to be original.

So, once you’ve got your technique nailed and you’ve got an original idea, it’s time to submit. Here’s what some editors have to say about the submission process. One editor says if you’re submitting effectively you’re probably sending out 20-30 submissions every month.

Here are some helpful submission tips to live by. For those submitting books, Jane Friedman offers this useful article on how to evaluate small press publishers.


“The Haunted Ceiling,” a macabre tale by H.G. Wells, is published for the first time in the latest issue of The Strand Magazine.Books always make great Christmas gifts. Twenty-five authors recently shared their best literary presents. If you still need help picking out a great book, NPR has a nifty book concierge service that can help. Harper Collins has also launched its own Book Finder to help you find the perfect book to give this holiday.

In Memoriam:

William Trevor, whose mournful, sometimes darkly funny short stories and novels about the small struggles of unremarkable people placed him in the company of masters like V. S. Pritchett, W. Somerset Maugham and Chekhov, died on Sunday. He was 88.

Seen any interesting stories about reading or writing? Share them in the Comments below!


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