Happy last Friday of January 2021! It’s hard to believe it’s only been 2021 for a month when so much has happened, but if 2020 taught us anything it’s that time isn’t real when you wear sweatpants every day. Speaking of 2020, we’re putting together a series about writing during times of crisis and we would love to hear from you! And if you want to hear from us, be sure to subscribe to our newsletter for the latest KWL news and updates, including the first sneak peak at what our dev team has been working tirelessly on! Now onto the publishing news:
The Authors Guild has asked the Department of Justice to block Penguin Random House’s acquisition of Simon and Schuster.
A bookstore in Chicago is launching National Black Literacy Day this February.
The American Library Association has announced that their 2021 conference will be held virtually.
Disney Publishing Worldwide has named Sarah Weisinger Head of Global Publishing.
Mary-Kay Wilmers, longtime editor of the London Review of Books, has stepped down.
Small Press Distribution has started an internal audit following employee allegations of wage issues and discrimination.
This book club is helping get vaccines into the arms of folks in their small town.
Amanda Gorman, the inaugural poet that blew us all away with her performance at President Biden’s inauguration, will be performing at the Superbowl.
The finalists for the 2020 National Book Critics Circle Awards have been announced.
A lot of new celebrity-authored books were announced this week. Comedian (and host of Canada Reads) Ali Hassan is publishing a memoir this fall.
Seth Rogan is publishing an essay collection, set to come out this spring. I personally can’t wait for the audiobook for this one.
SNL star (and one of my favourite cast members) Cecily Strong will be publishing a memoir this year.
Canadian Olympian Andre De Grasse is writing a children’s book.
The Great Gatsby is getting adapted for the small screen in what’s being called a “More Diverse and Inclusive” television adaptation.
A live-action Harry Potter TV series is rumoured to be in the works at HBO Max.
There has been some controversy surrounding the casting of Alyssa Milano in the latest Nora Roberts adaptation, but the author isn’t having it.
And finally, my favourite pieces of the week: a fun insider’s look at what it was like to record Barack Obama’s latest audiobook (which sits at a causal 29 hours in length).
As a lover of thrillers (so long as their not too scary), I’ve always been fascinated by plot twists and this piece dives deep into what makes them work (warning: contains spoilers for Dioboliques, Psycho, The Sixth Sense, Scream, and Game of Thrones).
Have a wonderful weekend, everyone!
Laura, Author Engagement Specialist
“I don’t often read short stories, but I’m glad that this collection was selected as a pick for my book club. Danielle Evans is a beautiful writer, and each story brought forth complex characters and a new, thought provoking conversation around difficult topics such as race, culture, and privilege. My personal favorites were Why Won’t Women Just Say What They Want and Anything Could Disappear.”