Literary Events Go Virtual in the Time of COVID-19

William Gibson in Second Life

To be a part of the literary community over the last few weeks has involved seeing months’ worth of events rescheduled, canceled, or shifted online. In some cases, this has been due to precautions taken to prevent coronavirus infection; in others, it’s due to writers canceling book tours. The Loft’s Wordplay Festival is shifting from an in-person event to one that will take place in a host of online spaces, for instance. As writers, publishers, and event planners look out at this shifting landscape, a host of questions come to mind. If events aren’t feasible right now, are there alternatives? Are live-streamed readings and discussions the new normal when it comes to literary events? Is there a way to capture that same sense of community that the best literary events held in a physical space can accomplish?

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A Year of Favorites: Tobias Carroll

I always get something wrong in these. There’s generally one book that I utterly forget to include, remember two days later, and curse myself for leaving out. And this year, I’m throwing in some thoughts on music, so that should offer even more opportunities for retrospective regret. I’m getting in just under the wire with this one, yes indeed.

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“These Are the Stories of How I Got There”: Matt Bell on His New Collection

Last month, I sat down for dinner with Matt Bell during a recent visit that he was making to New York. The occasion was the release of his collection of short stories, A Tree or a Person or a Wall, which includes shorter works taken from two earlier, now-out-of-print books, as well as stories written around the time of his novel In the House Upon the Dirt Between the Lake and the Woods and Scrapper. I’ve been interviewing Bell for […]

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