A blog about writing and self publishing

The Vivian Awards, Canadian Publishing in a Post-Pandemic World, and Silent Virtual Reading Clubs: This Week in Book News

Photo by Mr Cup / Fabien Barral on Unsplash

Happy Friday, everyone! To those who celebrated a long weekend last week, I hope you had a wonderful break, and to those who are heading into a long weekend as we speak, I hope you have a wonderful break! It’s been another slow-ish week in the publishing world, but we’ve been keeping pretty busy over here at KWL working on some exciting new things, and we had a wonderful Facebook Live event with Orna Ross from the Alliance of Independent Authors this week! If you haven’t watched it already you should definitely check it out.


Big news in the Indie Romance Publishing world this week: after a somewhat controversial period, the RWA has renamed the Rita Awards the Vivian Awards in honour of the founder of the group.

RWA Retires RITA Awards, Debuts the ‘Vivian’ After a Winter of Controversy

The Romance Writers of America will permanently retire its annual RITA Awards, which it has presented annually since 1982, and introduce a new award, the Vivian, following a controversy related to issues of diversity at the organization over the winter.

Author Brandon Sanderson has made his creative writing lectures available to anyone and everyone on Youtube.


Canadian publishers and booksellers continue to search for what their future will look like in a post-pandemic world.

Amazon hurt them. The lockdown hurt them. Now there’s a painful loss in court. Canada’s book biz – authors, publishers, retailers – is hunting for a new business model

If there were ever a perfect storm for the publishing industry in Canada, this is it. Bricks-and-mortar stores have shut down, leaving booksellers, large and small, scrambling to do business online; they’re beginning to send unsold books back to publishers, putting pressure on their bottom line; and a legal decision has come down that affects publishers and writers struggling to get paid forthe works that educators are so desperate to use right now.

Publishers seem to be racing to publish timely works on or about the pandemic.

Publishers Snap Up Corona Books, From Case Studies to Plague Poetry

Authors are racing to produce timely accounts of the outbreak, with works that range from reported narratives to spiritual guides. The poetry collection is part of a new crop of quickly assembled books about the pandemic.

UK Wholesaler, Bertam Group, has gone up for sale this past week

U.K. Wholesaler Bertram Group Is Up for Sale

Bertram Group, one of the top U.K. book wholesale companies, is up for sale, according to The Bookseller. An advertisement online notes that the company had revenuer of some £250 million last year, with a gross profit of £9 million.


James Patterson and Bill Clinton will reunite to write a second thriller together about a former president’s daughter who gets kidnapped.

Bill Clinton writing second thriller with James Patterson

Bill Clinton is set to publish his second thriller, a crime novel which follows a former US president whose daughter is kidnapped. Clinton, whose own daughter Chelsea Clinton is also an author and the vice chair of the Clinton Foundation, is teaming up for the second time with thriller powerhouse James Patterson to co-write The President’s Daughter.

Disney + has announced they’ll be producing a new Percy Jackson series.

Rick Riordan announces new Percy Jackson TV series coming to Disney+

Some things take more than one try to get right. The extremely popular Percy Jackson & the Olympians book series by Rick Riordan (which has since spawned multiple spin-offs) has already been adapted for the big screen in the form of 2010’s The Lightning Thief and its 2013 sequel, Sea of Monsters.

David E. Kelley, the producing giant behind Big Little Lies and Ally McBeal, will be adapting Anatomy of a Scandal for Netflix.

David E. Kelley and Netflix are working on a ‘Anatomy of a Scandal’ TV adaptation

Prolific TV writer/producer David E. Kelley has announced his first project for Netflix. The Big Little Lies Emmy winner is helping adapt the bestselling novel Anatomy of a Scandal into a TV show. Joining him on the project are two Netflix show veterans, co-creator Melissa James Gibson ( House of Cards) and director S.J.


The shortlist for the Indigenous Voices Award has been announced.

Jesse Thistle & Helen Knott among finalists for $30K Indigenous Voices Awards | CBC Books

Jesse Thistle’s From the Ashes and Helen Knott’s In My Own Moccasins are among the 21 published and unpublished works by emerging Indigenous writers shortlisted for the 2020 Indigenous Voices Awards.


A new trend is emerging during the pandemic: silent, virtual reading clubs. The New York Times has written about the experience and missing public reading spaces here, and the CBC has also written about a virtual reading club anyone can join here:

Join this video conference so you can read silently with others | CBC Radio

Njeri Damali Sojourner Campbell has a YouTube channel and a Facebook group where she focuses on Afrofuturist fiction. But when the pandemic hit and so many of us were suddenly alone in our homes, she decided to start Quarantined Pages, a daily silent reading group.


If you’ve found yourself looking for some shorter content to read during the pandemic, the CBC has compiled a hefty list of Canadian short stories you can read online for free.

Need something to read while you isolate? Here are 73 Canadian short stories available free online | CBC Books

Kevin Hardcastle is an author from Ontario. His debut short story collection, Debris , won the Trillium Book Award in 2016 and his first novel, In the Cage , came out in 2017. He posted a roundup of short stories to read online on his personal website.

Are you looking for something new to do with your kids during lockdown? Why not get them into Stephen King (although young me would have had wicked nightmares from this so tread cautiously)

How to Get Your Kid Started on Stephen King

Most Stephen King readers I know discovered the man in their youth. They stumbled on a copy of Cujo or Firestarter in a library book sale and carted it home, and then they couldn’t put it down, and then their tiny story-loving minds exploded. In the best way possible.

Or, if you’re like me and are missing sports so much it’s painful, why not check out one of these books on great moments in sport?

With the Olympics Canceled, There’s Plenty of Time to Read Up on Heroic Moments in Sports

With the Olympics postponed to July 2021, you might be missing your sports fix. In case you need a taste of the thrill of victory and the agony of defeat, I’ve compiled a collection of sports books to read this summer. Instead of a torch, light a candle and let the reading marathon begin.

And finally, let’s spend some more time judging the bookshelves behind famous people in virtual interviews, an activity that is slowly becoming my favourite hobby.

What Celebrity Book Curator Thatcher Wine Really Thinks of A-Listers’ Bookshelves

Every item on this page was chosen by a Town & Country editor. We may earn commission on some of the items you choose to buy. How well did Prince Charles’s book collection score? We asked Thatcher Wine.

Have a great weekend, everyone!


Staff Recommendation
Stephanie, Publisher Operations Specialist

The Hunger Games Trilogy ebook by Suzanne Collins – Rakuten Kobo

Read “The Hunger Games Trilogy” by Suzanne Collins available from Rakuten Kobo. The stunning Hunger Games trilogy is complete! The extraordinary, ground breaking New York Times bestsellers The Hunger …

“I reread the whole Hunger Games trilogy recently — I had rewatched the first movie and was like, ‘man those books were good’ and then I had to finish them all! The books still hold up ten years later, but Catching Fire is still the best one. May the odds be ever in your favor!”

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