His mom banned science fiction, now he’s an award-winning publisher (Des Moines Register)

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Lars is 43 and makes his living writing about time travelers and vampire slayers, but his life itself is perhaps a greater flight of fantasy.

He was once a small-town Iowa boy who went off to the big cities, New York and Los Angeles, to seek fortune and glory as a writer and editor.

Yet he returned to Iowa and the easy living of Des Moines to become a science fiction publishing magnate.


How Arundhati Roy avoided the successful young fiction writer’s dreaded curse (Quartz)

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Instead of struggling with fiction, Roy used her platform to become an activist. She heavily criticized Western foreign policy over the war in Afghanistan. In India, she has become a fighter for social justice, including painstakingly documenting the battle between Maoist guerillas, corporations, and tribal people for the mineral-rich land in the northeast. She’s a speaker, an essayist, “probably now her country’s most globally famous polemicist” according to commentator Ian Jack.


Country Spotlight: Singapore: Literary Publishing (Publisher’s Weekly)

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Singapore’s reading culture, Leck observes, has improved over the years, “with more young adults and junior college students picking up poetry and literary titles. But there are a lot of new voices out there, and not nearly enough literary publishers.” To encourage budding writers and entice young readers, BooksActually regularly hosts literary sessions and exhibitions, and sets up pop-up stores around the island.


Good Sex in Fiction award hoping to end the ridicule of erotic literature (Independent)

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The problem is partly down to the compartmentalisation of sex in mainstream literature. While sex is part and parcel of life in film and TV, in novels it is often refined to ‘erotic fiction’ when it comes to books – at least in public perception – which tends to value titilation above art.


The importance of science fiction to entrepreneurship

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SciFi, fantasy, D&D and comics are a common root interest in founders and funders alike, and I’d argue they are interests we cannot afford to lose. They show us visions of the future we sometimes go on to build, or that we seek to fund. Charles Stross’s writing on gaming economics, AR and VR has ideas embedded within it that are better than most startup pitches I see. Diamond Age from Stephenson remains the most compelling edtech startup concept never built. Mother of Storms from John Barnes predicted global warming impacts, patent trolls, citizen journalism and private satellite launches far before they became even remotely early ideas for most.

 

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