Friday, November 18, 2011

Around the Word

Novel dysfunction: If the prospect of spending Thanksgiving with your family makes you feel less than grateful, consider turning to some literary inspiration for dealing with dysfunctional families. In honor of the holiday, Ploughshares Literary Magazine put together a list of the books about the darkest, craziest and unhappiest families. What's your favorite book about family feuds?

Fired up: Amazon's newest e-reader -- the tablet-style Kindle Fire -- has finally arrived, and the reviews are lukewarm. Slate technology writer Farhad Manjoo gives his take on the Fire, characterizing it as "underachieving" but priced low enough that it could successfully compete with the iPad. Manjoo also predicts that the Fire will lead to even more book sales than previous Kindles. Will you be buying a Fire this holiday season?

Unreasonable lending? In other Amazon news, the Authors Guild is pretty unhappy with Amazon's other new feature: the Kindle Owner's Lending Library. The AG issued a statement arguing that the lending library falls outside the realm of most publishing licensing contracts. They also have some tips for getting your book taken out of the library if it's there without your permission, GalleyCat reports. Is the Lending Library a good thing for authors, or a backhanded move by Amazon?

Best of the web: As any web-surfing word nerd knows, there's tons of writing advice on the Internet -- some of it good, and some if it not so good. Over at the Writing Resource, Erin Brenner compiled a list of her favorite advice on the writing process, from getting started to keeping your readers' attention. Do you have an article on writing that you refer to again and again?

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