As every poet/writer/creative writing associate professor already knows, the AWP Conference kicks off today in Boston. For those who don’t know, this is a wild weekend of panels, readings, more readings, book exhibits, more poetry readings, drinking, bad dancing by poets, readings, and general literary funtimes.1
Once again, Open Letter will be attending (both Kaija and I will be there), and once again, we have a table at the end of the end of the world. So if you’re lost up on the second floor of the exhibition center, come see us at Z24, which is probably next to the Dianetics stand, that weirdo puppet guy, and some grad student who makes bongs and bookmarks out of beer cans.2
If you do make it to our stand, we will greet you with a free Thousand Morons T-shirt, and will sell you any of our books—from The Canvas to Maidenhair to Death in Spring to Zone to The Private Lives of Trees to Ergo—for $10 each.
So come see us! And if you can’t find our booth, just check all the parties. We’re gonna rip this scene up and teach you flannel children how publishers party.
1 Oh, and desperation and skinny jeans. Lots and lots of desperation. The vast majority of attendees are young
hipsters writers looking to break into print. So yeah. It’s like a casting couch for lyric poets!
2 Seriously, AWP Adminstrators. Why the shit are we relegated to this part of the exhibition hall? Who do I have to sleep with to get Open Letter—one of the more prestigious independent presses in the country—into a space near our comprable presses? It’s really irritating to be floors away from NYRB and New Directions and Graywolf and all the areas where people actually buy books . . . Seriously. There are start-up presses publishing single poems on the back of napkins that have better placement than we do. These presses won’t even be around next year, after their bearded directors blow all their sales money (“Oh, I just love the concreteness of your publishing enterprise. Napkin poems make me feel so alive.”) on fake mushrooms and more skinny jeans. Then again, writers generally don’t, and creative writing programs definitely don’t have any sense of perspective, so I guess it only makes sense that your exhibition hall layout is so jacked. Congratulations!
It’s worth noting that the AWP bookfair will be open to the public on Saturday, February 2nd from 8:30am till 5:30pm. The exhibit halls are on the 2nd and 3rd floors of the Hilton New York (1335 Avenue of the Americas, btw 53rd and 54th).
The exhibitors list is pretty amazing, and according to CLMP (the Council for Literary Magazines and Presses), this will be “the country’s largest independent press fair.”
Definitely worth coming out, especially since most of these publishers will be offering significant discounts . . .
We don’t usually post event info here, but based on the nature of (and Three Percent/Open Letter connection to) this event, I think it’s definitely worth highlighting.
All this info is repeated below, but as part of the Association of Writers & Writing Programs conference (a.k.a. AWP), the Center for the Art of Translation is hosting a happy hour on Friday night at the Times Square Information Center (really).
Here are all the details:
World Literature at the Crossroads
Translation Happy Hour and Reading
The Center for the Art of Translation invites you to a celebration of global voices in Times Square with acclaimed authors and translators from 15 years of TWO LINES: World Writing in Translation, including:
as well as Luisa Igloria reading from Tagalog and Erica Weitzman reading from Albanian
and C.M. Mayo with a tribute to special guest GREGORY RABASSA
Gregory Rabassa will be signing copies of our latest anthology, New World/New Words: Recent Writing from the Americas.
Refreshments will be served.
Join us to toast world literature and translation in the beautifully-restored landmark Embassy Movie Theatre on 7th Avenue, at the crossroads of the world!
Friday February 1, 2008
Times Square Information Center
1560 Broadway (7th Avenue between 46th and 47th Streets)
For more information about this event and the TWO LINES World Library, visit www.catranslation.org.
Should be an amazing event, and I’ll definitely be there—along with other Reading the World publishers—this line-up is pretty amazing. . . . And it’s always fun to party with international lit people. Not to mentiuon, Open Letter will be publishing Jorge Volpi’s No Sera la Tierra in the fall of 2009, and an excerpt from Vilnius Poker by Ricardas Gavelis (forthcoming from OL in Feb 2009) is in the next issue of Two Lines . . . (One of these days we’ll post a complete list of our forthcoming books.)
Anyway, I hope to meet some of you there . . .
Karel Schoeman’s Afrikaans novel, This Life, translated by Else Silke, falls into a genre maybe only noticed by the type of reader who tends toward Wittgenstein-type family resemblances. The essential resemblance is an elderly narrator, usually alone—or with one other. . .
In Joris-Karl Hyusmans’s most popular novel, À rebours (Against Nature or Against the Grain, depending on the which translated edition you’re reading), there is a famous scene where the protagonist, the decadent Jean des Esseintes, starts setting gemstones on the. . .
There are books that can only wisely be recommended to specific types of readers, where it is easy to know who the respective book won’t appeal to, and Kristiina Ehin’s Walker on Water is one these. What makes this neither. . .
Imagine the most baroque excesses of Goethe, Shakespeare, and Poe, blended together and poured into a single book: That is The Nightwatches of Bonaventura. Ophelia and Hamlet fall in love in a madhouse, suicidal young men deliver mournful and heartfelt. . .
In 1899, Maurice Ravel wrote “Pavane pour une infante défunte” (“Pavane for a Dead Princess”) for solo piano (a decade later, he published an orchestral version). The piece wasn’t written for a particular person; Ravel simply wanted to compose a. . .
Fiston Mwanza Mujila is an award-winning author, born in the Democratic Republic of Congo, who now, at 33, lives in Austria. From what I could find, much of his work is influenced by the Congo’s battle for independence and its. . .
Twenty-One Days of a Neurasthenic is not a novel in the traditional sense. Rather, it is a collection of vignettes recorded by journalist Georges Vasseur in his diary during a month spent in the Pyrenées Mountains to treat his nervous. . .