In honor of one of America’s greatest writers, the state of Ohio passed legislation to honor Lorain-native Toni Morrison, designating her birthday, February 18, as “Toni Morrison Day.” “Toni Morrison is the embodiment of the promise of Ohio. She made the most of her innate talents with ceaseless hard work and rose to the pinnacle of literary achievement,” said State Representative Joe Miller. “I am excited that we have the opportunity to recognize Ms. Morrison as one of Ohio’s most accomplished creative minds.”
In the New York Times, a review of 2013 Year in Reading alum Olivia Laing’s new book, which delves into the alcoholism of Hemingway, Fitzgerald and six other famous writers. Among the biographical tidbits in the book: Tennessee Williams had a brandy Alexander every day when he lived in New Orleans.
“I am not at all sure—convinced, certain, persuaded—that creative-writing courses are a good idea unless they prevent people from writing sentences like this one, where adjectives—useful, helpful, intensely descriptive words—are stacked upon one another as Pelion used to be piled upon Ossa.” Alexander McCall Smith on the dangers of overwriting.
Husband and wife writing duo Matthew Seal and Julie Bruton-Seal will launch their new book, Make Your Own Aphrodisiacs, just in time for Valentine’s Day. The couple, who live in Britain, (and who are by no means spring chickens), are encouraging people to look at natural ways of boosting their libido and to remove some of the myths and taboos surrounding aphrodisiacs.