New Age Book Reviews

New Age Book Reviews

Liz Winks talks about whether GIFs and memes should be used to review books. 

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Acts of Literary Citizenship: A Twitter Adventure

Here’s what happened when I put my students in charge of the @LitCitizen account.

White Pages

For the past week, Haley Muench and I were put in charge (yikes) of the @LitCitizen twitter account.

Running social media for myself is one thing. Running a Twitter account for a broad concept which has a strong community is quite another. We needed a plan. We needed to figure out what the community wanted to know about, what they wanted to know from us.

Have you ever tried to figure out what people you haven’t even met want from you? It’s some pretty difficult stuff.

Then, we thought of Acts of Literary Citizenship. These are actions that people can take to show their dedication and passion for the literary world. After all, what good is a passion for something if it isn’t shared?

As our professor, Cathy Day‘s, class has evolved,  a list of about 40 Literary Citizenship Acts were already compiled. We added about 10 more due to…

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Be a Lit Citizen: Donate books, drink beer, and be merry!

What better way to practice literary citizenship: donate books and drink beer. Haley Muench tells you how.

A Generation Speaks

Indiana will soon have twelve more breweries to boast of in 2014. The Indy Star recently did a quick survey of some of the new businesses which you can glance at here. But one of these breweries (number 2 on the list) has an interesting twist that caught my attention.

Books and Brews can be found at their website, on Facebook, or on Twitter.

Books and Brews

Books and Brews, located near 96th and Hauge Rd Indianapolis, began as an idea for a bookstore and then added on the brewery as a way to attract more customers. They will feature live music, readings, beer tasting, a mug club, and more! The shop hopes to open this month (February 2014) and has done a fantastic job of keeping anxious would-be patrons updated with their progress.

This business is practicing a great model of literary citizenship. They’ve exposed all of their process…

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Weekly Experiment: Outward Only

Every week in my Literary Citizenship class, I’m giving my students a new weekly “experiment” or intention.

This week it’s “Outward Only.”

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Social media doesn’t have a reputation as a force for good. A lot of people think that it makes us self-absorbed, etc. And this is true, don’t you think? It’s hard not to use SM to celebritize ourselves, to share our oh so amazing thoughts, to brag on ourselves oh so humbly. Social media does cause us to turn inward. So let’s try something different for a week: lets use it to focus outward instead.

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For the next week, use social media ONLY to help others. For one week, you are trying to make the world a better place for books. Share links. Praise others. Thank others. Talk about books you’re reading, your favorite writers or magazines.

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Nothing about yourself unless it helps someone or something. Outward focus only. Nothing inward.

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Every time you engage in this activity, use the hashtag #litcitizen.

It’s like #fridayreads.

Actually, that’s exactly what FridayReads is: Literary Citizenship.

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Join us. (And please share this post widely. Thank you!)


Be a Literary Citizen, Get a Free House

writehouse_house_exterior_cleanup_homeCheck out the mission of Write-a-House:

Our mission is simple: to enliven the literary arts of Detroit by renovating homes and giving them to authors, journalists, poets, aka writers. It’s like a writer-in-residence program, only in this case we’re actually giving the writer the residence, forever.

And here’s the best part, how you get to keep the house: be a literary citizen.

The WAH Author-in-Residence will also be expected to:

  • contribute content to the WAH blog on a regular basis.
  • participate in local readings and other cultural events
  • use the home as their primary residence.
  •  In general, they will be responsible home owners, engaged neighbors, committed city residents and good literary citizens.

Apply for a residency and spread the word.


Lori May’s roundup on Literary Citizenship

On her blog, Journeys and Destinations, Lori May offers a roundup of links about Lit Cit.

In print. Online. Everything. Hooray!

That itself is literary citizenship!

She says:

I couldn’t be happier to see so much discussion of late on the topic of literary citizenship. This is a topic near and dear to me and one I’ve had the pleasure of discussing at a number of MFA programs and community writing events over the years. We can never discuss this topic too much. Our involvement in the community—as writers, as readers—only nets good, as far as I’m concerned. Whether helping a small press get off the ground through volunteer hours, or sharing a recommended read with a booklover at work, a little good goes a long way in fostering not only our literary and cultural communities, but our regular old day-to-day life as people.


Roxane Gay on Literary Citizenship

Over at the AWP site, Roxane Gay offers eight questions writers should ask themselves.

One of them is: Are you a good literary citizen?

Good literary citizenship can also extend to how you comport yourself when participating in social networks. Are you relentless in promoting your own writing, sharing the same link more than two or three times? Do you send direct messages or private Facebook messages to strangers, promoting your latest project? Of course you should promote your work but take care in how you promote your work and consider sharing the good news about the writing of others, if you are so moved.

Mostly, literary citizenship is the importance of remembering that no one is alone in the writing world. Conduct yourself as such.

Read the whole essay here. It’s awesome.