Writing at the Castle
Switzerland-based novelist Louise Mangos relives long, hot summer days in the south of France … and discusses the benefits of being displaced at a writing retreat.
Bringing Legend to Life
Historical fiction writer JD Smith on Tristan and Iseult, and the challenges and rewards of adapting myths and legends for the page;
Two Woolf readers talk about journeys of adaptation, growth and imagination, and the experience of having a foot in several cultural camps; and
Adapting to Happiness
The Woolf‘s resident scientist, Iida Ruishalme discusses whether her ideas of happiness have adapted to her life circumstances over time;
Plunder: Remix or Robbery?
JJ Marsh gives an overview of those grey areas between borrowing and theft (and some words of wisdom for writers).
Snapshot of a writing life: Tao Lin
Chris Corbett’s take on Tao Lin, a writer who raids and re-uses his life.
Writing (and Revising) Success
What does success mean to a writer? Do any of us write—or pursue other creative endeavours—without some notion of our effort being recognized, rewarded, lauded? And what sort of outcomes ought we to lust after? Kristen Coros investigates.
7 Tips for Starting a Critique Group
Behind every great writer you’ll find … other writers. Kelly Jarosz provides seven tips for forming a successful critique group and why you should.
Iida Ruishalme explains how the space between languages is full of serendipity, ripe for a wordsmith’s shameless plundering.
The literature of exploitation
by Johanna Sargeant Why is it that we love reading about exploitation? Anne Frank’s The Diary of a Young Girl and Arthur Golden’s Memoirs of a Geisha sit stoically on my bookshelf next to Vladimir Nabokov’s Lolita and Richard Overy’s The Dictators. For most of us, delving into these worlds of both the victim and the perpetrator is like reading any good fiction: It is escapism, it is voyeuristic, it gives us...
A Fiction Workshop Experience
Meredith Suter-Wadley gives an overview of the Zurich Writers Workshop, held in May at the Volkshaus in Zurich. Meredith attended the fiction workshop run by Anne Korkeakivi. The weekend kicked off with a Friday evening reading at Orell Füssli’s English Book Store in Zurich. Anne Korkeakivi read from her novel An Unexpected Guest, and Chantal Panozzo, the non-fiction instructor, read from her collection of essays, Swiss Life: 30...
A Place for Persecuted Writers in Switzerland
Melinda Nadj Abonji, Adi Blum and Ulrike Ulrich are the initiators of a new writers-in-exile programme for Switzerland. The Woolf talked to Adi Blum, of the Swiss German PEN Centre to learn more.
The Next Big Thing? Germany
In 2009-2010, Germany’s sales of ebooks were around 1.5 million, representing 0.8% of the German book market. Around two years behind the trends in the US, the market began to expand, at first slowly, then it mushroomed. Industry experts predict that for the year 2014-2015, ebook sales will reach over 60 and will account for 25% of all book sales in Germany. The Woolf talks to editor Susanne Weigand and independent author, blogger and journalist Matthias Matting.
Emily Bronte is Dead
“What is it that makes us love or hate a piece of literature? Do I love Ginsberg because he gives me a window in the zeitgeist of 1960s America: Sex, angst and drugs? Yes. Do I love Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein because she exposes me to a society where the wonder of electricity was something to be feared?” Johanna Sargeant on
Engaging with Story
Jill Marsh, Nicola Hodges “The basic substance of imaginative literature … is not reason but emotion, which is expressed not by the denotations of words, nor the grammar of the sentences but in connotations and colorations of the words as employed by the author’s style … it exists not as words written in books but as images with feelings attached.” —Jane Smiley, 13 Ways of Looking at the Novel The reader/writer...
Strategic Engagement: Finding the best workshop for you
Chantal Panozzo and Kelly Jarosz talk about how the Zurich Writers’ Workshop got started, and how to choose a workshop to suit your writing needs.
Skipping the barrier
“While I check e-mail for the hundredth time, my friend stares ahead in tight-jawed concentration. She’s had a hard day but is hell-bent on getting not only the front row, but a very specific spot. When I pull out the sensible bag of fruit we’re calling dinner, she waves it away. The grapes are too tart, but I eat them anyway.” D.B. Miller on Stereophonics.
Distractions A migrant’s tale: Shaun Tan’s graphic novel, The Arrival. A moving outsider’s tale with barely a word in sight. Where to read online: http://flavorwire.com/407418/the-25-best-websites-for-literature-lovers Synaesthesia – crossing senses. Check out the worlds of David Eagleman, expert on the idiosyncrasies of the brain. http://eagleman.com/synesthesia Coney. “The experience starts when you first hear...
Switzerland, ISBNs and Authors
“An ISBN identifies your book, like a fingerprint. If you’re based in Switzerland, you need to apply for Swiss ISBNs.” Jill J. Marsh (Switzerland’s representative for the Alliance of Independent Authors) gives a round-up of the advice she gave at the Independent Publishing Event in Zürich.