A poetry chapbook and Eudora Welty birthday giveaway. Jill McCorkle in The New York Times. New Orleans poet Kelly Harris on what keeps her grounded, Faulkner's Nobel Prize medal up for auction and the 2014 Great American Fiction Contest. Plus, lots of book festivals in Literary Events and today's poem of the day in Southern Voice.
September 30 kicked off the American Society of Journalists and Authors' Banned Books Week. Started in 1982, the campaign was a reaction to schools and libraries pulling books off the shelves because of their objections to language and subject matter.
School starting in many locations across the country today got us thinking about those required reading lists. As an adult, you have a second chance to rediscover some of them - on your own time and with no pop quiz afterward.
As part of Literary Friday, we rounded up five gifts sure to be a hit with the book lover in your life.
Merriam-Webster defines bromance as “a close, nonsexual friendship between men.” Hunter Murphy has compiled a list of the best male relationships in Southern literature, some with tragic ends and others exhibiting downright heroic bromantic behavior.
Join us on Twitter from 1-2 CST today for Literary Friday, where we'll be discussing these legendary literary relationships and more.
Thank you notes and correspondence this summer just got a bit more Southern with the U.S. Postal Service's announcement of a Forever stamp featuring Gregory Peck as Atticus Finch. The 17th inductee into the "Legends of Hollywood" stamp series, Peck is best remembered by Southerners for his award-winning role in "To Kill A Mockingbird." Stamps are available at local post offices, the Postal Store website or by calling 800-STAMP-24. Mockingbird fans also have until June 28 to apply for a first-day-of-issue postmark by attaching stamps to an envelope and addressing it to:
Gregory Peck Stamp
Los Angeles Marketing Department
7001 S. Central Ave., #307
Los Angeles, CA 90052-9998
Monroeville, Alabama, hometown of Mockingbird author Harper Lee, also celebrated the stamp's release with an event at the courthouse. (A total of 13,873 stamps were sold!) A special postmark from the town post office, affectionately known as Mockingbird Station, is available through May 31.
Halloween is coming soon. What are you going to be?
Sweet Potato Queen - Her highness Jill Conner Browne's SPQ store on the Sweet Potato Queens website sells her signature red wig, queenly shades, rhinestone-encrusted baseball cap or crown, a variety of t-shirts and even a bling mug, all guaranteed to make your butt look smaller and instantly transform you into a queen. (For the guy lucky enough to get a date with a queen for the evening, there's the "Gen-u-wine Spud Stud" t-shirt.)
True Blood Character - HBO's hit vampire series "True Blood," set in Bon Temps, Louisiana, has its own apparel, so you can get Vampire Bill's trademark thermal henley, the Merlotte's waitress tee and apron, Jason's varsity jacket or a complete Sookie outfit. Add in a bottle of "Tru-Blood" and a few bite marks, and you're ready to go.
Scarlett O'Hara - Unless you're prepared to spend a pretty penny on this costume, you may want to take a nod from Scarlett herself and rip down some curtains, but we did find a costume shop in New Hampshire that will ship out several different gowns for rental. They've got a couple versions of the green curtain dress, plus Scarlett's
Deep South's planned celebration of the 50th anniversary of "To Kill A Mockingbird" is official and will take place in Lafayette, Louisiana, on September 25. Our local Barnes & Noble has graciously agreed to host the event, and we owe a big thanks to Community Relations Manager Herman Fuselier! We'll kick off the Saturday celebration with a panel, including University of Louisiana at Lafayette English professor and Southern lit scholar Mary Ann Wilson, in discussion with several other locals and those in the legal profession. Other events will include readings from the book, children's activities, a theatrical performance by local high school students and a possible showing of the movie. (We are still working out the logistics for the movie, but hope to either show it from the roof of the bookstore drive-in style or indoors.)
Haven't read "To Kill A Mockingbird" or don't know what happened to your copy? Books will be available for purchase at the event, and publisher Harper Collins is also providing us with a few goodies to give away.
We'd also like to thank the law firm of Edwards Stefanski Zaunbrecher, located in Crowley, Louisiana, for signing on as a sponsor. Their support will help with costs
by Erin Z. Bass
Like most of us Southerners, I read the book "To Kill a Mockingbird" in school and probably watched the movie then too. Growing up in a small town where everybody on our street knew each other, I could relate to the Boo Radley house (it was right across the street from my own and occupied much of my time standing at the kitchen window with binoculars trying to find out what went on inside) as well as to Mrs. Dubose (she lived two houses down and didn't appreciate my sister and I picking her roses). What I didn't find out until much later is that the town of Maycomb actually exists. It's Monroeville, Alabama, the home of Harper Lee, courthouse featured in the book and an annual theatrical production of the now classic story.
As "To Kill a Mockingbird" celebrates its 50th anniversary this year, Monroeville is preparing for thousands of "Mockingbird" fans to descend upon the town starting today and lasting through the weekend. The Monroe County Heritage Museum kicks off the celebration with a panel discussion by residents who remember the novel’s publication and how it transformed their sleepy little town. Thursday's schedule also includes the
If you've never read Harper Lee's iconic Southern novel, "To Kill A Mockingbird," there's no better time than now. As the book marks its 50th anniversary this year, cities and towns all over America are celebrating with readings, theater reproductions and events. Needless to say, the Deep South is on board (Harper Lee hails from Alabama) and no matter where you live, there's probably a "Mockingbird" event near you.
See our list below, and tell us if we left out your town. And as a primer, check the book out at your local library or at least watch the 1962 Academy Award-winning movie, starring Gregory Peck as Atticus Finch. You'll then be able to join in the discussion on "To Kill a Mockingbird's" official Facebook page.
Notre Dame High School Drama Club performs the classic. March 12-14, Grand Opera House of the South, Crowley.
Tennessee Williams Festival in New Orleans will focus on the novel in its Breakfast Book Club discussion, moderated by Barton Palmer, who wrote a book on the film. March 27, 8 a.m., Muriel's Jackson Square Restaurant, New Orleans.
"A Day in Maycomb" will be held at the Old Courthouse Museum & Downtown Square in Harper Lee's hometown of Monroeville. Guided