Hello dear readers, Emily here! After a quick break, it’s time to ring in the new year with a brand new Book Beat.
Writers on the New Year
To kick things off, I thought we’d take a look at the resolutions, goals, and hopes of writers and other bookish folks for 2018. It might be good for some writing motivation, you know?
Gary Barwin, author of Yiddish for Pirates, told CBC Books he doesn’t really make resolutions. However, in his humorous style, he provided a kind of new year’s prayer for writers instead:
“O New Year, grant me the temerity to write about the things I cannot change; the courage to write about the things I can and the wisdom not to know the difference […] O Year that is New, grant me the serenity to accept the writing I do not understand; the courage to edit the writing I can: and an editor to know the difference.”
Ember in the Ashes author Sabaa Tahir offered a “friendly reminder” to writers that they should approach unfinished writing goals with hope and extended encouragement this year. She particularly directed this advice to young POC, letting them know that “we need your voices.”
If you are looking at another year with an unfinished manuscript, or no agent, or an unpublished book, think of those who made it this year not with envy, but with hope. If they can do it, you can do it. If I can do it, you can do it.
— Sabaa Tahir Is On Hiatus Mostly (@sabaatahir) December 29, 2017
In a nod to the Love, Simon trailer, Adam Silvera resolved to tell someone he likes their boots. (If you’ve made a resolution to surround yourself with positivity, go follow Adam Silvera, Becky Albertali, and Angie Thomas on Twitter – their continued love and support of one another never fails to give me warm fuzzies).
2018 resolution: Tell someone I like their boots when I like their boots.
— ADAM (@AdamSilvera) December 31, 2017
And on the practical side, Eve Ewing shared a whole twitter thread with productivity tools and tips. My favourite tip from this list is to set up your workspace before you leave it, so that it’s ready to go, sans distractions, in the morning.
y'all know I'm all about the productivity tools/tips/tricks/toys. Here are two that I'm using as we ring in 2018 that I'm quite into….
— wikipedia brown (@eveewing) January 3, 2018
2018 Acquisition news
We may only be four days into the new year, but the publishing industry never sleeps. There are already multiple interesting acquisitions to report on from this week.
Fans of police procedurals, crime thrillers, and villainous protagonists will have a new series to look forward to soon. Author Jeff Lindsay, whose Dexter book series was adapted into a hit HBO show of the same name, just signed a two-book contract with publisher Dutton. According to Publisher’s Weekly, the currently untitled new series will follow a master thief who restricts his crimes to corrupt people. Sure, it sounds a little too similar to his previous work, but we’re still pretty excited about it.
Also featured in PW this week (and I may be including this because I heard “Christmas Time is Here” several times over the holidays), Library of America has acquired a Peanuts essay collection edited by agent Andrew Blauner. The collection, titled The Peanuts Papers: Charlie Brown, Snoopy and the Gang, and the Meaning of Life, will feature “characters, distinctive aspects or themes of the Peanuts strip, and the writers’ autobiographical engagement with the beloved comic.”
And in movie news, Jeff Zentner’s debut YA novel The Serpent King, which won the American Library Association’s William C Morris Award, has been optioned by Magnolia Entertainment. According to The Book Seller, Andersen Press will reissue The Serpent King with new cover art this month. So, now might be a good time to add it to your TBR.
Best Books of 2017: Presidential Edition
Before we wave 2017 a hearty goodbye, here’s one last Best Books list. Obama continued his tradition of sharing the best books and songs he consumed during the year with his followers. His reading list includes The Power by Naomi Alderman; Sing, Unburied Sing by Jesmyn Ward; and Exit West by Mohsin Hamid, among others. Check out the full list on Facebook and see if your favorite book from the year received some presidential praise.
(Editor’s Note: And for our readers in the Eastern United States, good luck and stay safe from that bomb cyclone!)