James Frey’s Big Score, Twitter Fiction Festival, and More

by Evan Smith Rakoff

Daily News

Online Only, posted 1.14.14

Every day Poets & Writers Magazine scans the headlines—from publishing reports to academic announcements to literary dispatches—for all the news that creative writers need to know. Here are today’s stories:

A Million Little Pieces author James Frey has sold a young-adult novel to HarperCollins and film rights to 20th Century Fox. (Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp. owns both companies.) The movie deal alone is rumored to be north of two million dollars, with Frey on board to write the screenplay. (Los Angeles Times)

With more of Emily Dickinson’s writing available to the public than ever before, Ange Mlinko asks: “Are we now closer to the real Emily Dickinson?” (Nation)

University of Bristol researchers have triangulated data from Google Ngram Viewer, Google Books, and the WordNet Affect (WNA) literary analysis tool to identify “aggregate literary moods” that correlate to prevailing economic indicators. The researchers discovered a ten-year lag time before literature mirrors economic conditions. (Fast Company)

Meanwhile, researchers at Stony Brook University in New York believe they may have found a computer algorithm that will predict best-selling books. (Inside Science)

Emily Temple gathers fifty novels “guaranteed to make you a better person,” including Katherine Dunn’s Geek Love, Joan Didion's Play It As It Lays, and Ralph Ellison’s Invisible Man. (Flavorwire)

Twitter announced its second-annual fiction festival for March 12–16. This year’s participants include Megan Abbott and Benjamin Percy, among others. (New York Times)

If you’re in New York City this month, the Edgar Allan Poe exhibit at the Morgan Library & Museum closes January 26. This Thursday evening, Paul Auster will speak about Poe’s influence on his own writing.