Put your writing woes on the big (little) screen with Morgan Spurlock

Per an article on Galleycat, filmmaker and author Morgan Spurlock posted a casting call for failed writers — that is, writers who have failed in their quest to write the Great American Novel.  Also, you can see the casting call on warriorpoetscasting.com.  Spurlock (30 Days, Super Size Me, A Day in the Life) will choose a few lucky failures from the New York area to feature in an upcoming series, Failure Club, a documentary-style program for Yahoo.  From the post:

This brand new series, Failure Club, is about embracing the fear of failure in order to change your life. Meeting each week over the course of a year, 7 different people will come together to form this unique Club where they will help each other achieve the things they’ve only dreamed of.

Found on Twitter via @bookbench

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Inspiring find: a 1,000 page beer guide by suds expert Garrett Oliver

This fall, you may confuse the bar for the bookstore.

In between tending to brew kettles and fermentation tanks, Brooklyn Brewery brew master Garrett Oliver has been hitting the books: The suds expert spent the past four years editing the massively comprehensive The Oxford Companion to Beer.

The nearly 1,000-page, A-to-Z reference guide digs deep into the minutiae of brewing and beer culture, covering topics that range from cask-conditioned ales to drinking traditions around the globe.

This is an inspiring find from TastingTable.

10 Reading Revolutions Before E-Books from @TheAtlantic

An inspired article in the Atlantic by Tim Carmody from last year that I wanted to share here with authors: “10 Reading Revolutions Before E-Books“. It’s an entertaining and insightful roundup of reading revolutions. Here’s a pic from the article, a student reading microfilm in the 1970s, an image from the London School of Economics library archives.

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A few hidden gems on author websites

I came across an inspiring roundup of unexpected offerings on author websites — Joanne LaSpina’s “Favorite Authors Tempt Readers Online“. Her list of hidden gems includes Stephenie Meyer’s (the Twilight author) 264-page draft available online, something from Edward’s perspective.  Jodi Picoult podcasts on a variety of topics.  James Patterson is offering the first 20 chapters of his newest family book, Middle School — The Worst Years of My Life.  And more.

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Author promotion using #SampleSunday on Twitter and Facebook

Sample Sunday was originally an inspired idea by David Wisehart in December 2010 as a way for authors to leverage social media to share some of their work with readers.

The basic idea is that on Sunday the author puts some writing up on their blog, and then tweets it using the #SampleSunday hashtag. Folks on Twitter (commonly called tweeps) have a chance of coming across the tweet and clicking through to see the author’s writing. These are generally tweeps who are following the author or watching the #SampleSunday hashtag activity. Continue reading

Inspiring: bookstore owner digitizes old menus found in books

The blog Handwritten Recipes is a fascinating time capsule in which the owner of a used bookstore posts recipes he finds tucked in old books (he found a recipe for Choco Mallow Logs in an old Sherlock Holmes volume).

The bookstore owner, Michael Popek, who lives and works in Oneonta, New York, has assembled these found treasures in his book, available for pre-order, to be released on November 1, 2011: Forgotten Bookmarks: A Bookseller’s Collection of Odd Things Lost Between the Pages. Continue reading