Welcome to Buzz Worthy News where the stories are awesome. Need your book industry news? Never fear, Kate Copeseeley is here to give it to you straight.
In this week’s Buzz Worthy News: A Monster Calls Trailer, Owen Wilson Joins Wonder, 1 Hour Book Delivery, and Google Deletes Author Blog. All this and more!
Buzz Worthy News is Cuddlebuggery’s weekly news post bringing you all the best information about the book and blogging world, particularly for the venn diagram of people who overlap between the two.
A Monster Calls
This movie looks unbelievably sad and haunting. I can’t wait to see it!
Wow! So intense! I kind of want to read this novel now. Erin Moriarty looks fantastic.
Game of Thrones: Beginner’s Guide
The fantastic folks over at HBO have created this guide to GOT for all you peeps who are interested or want to catch up on what’s been going on. It’s narrated by Samuel L. Jackson and it’s hilarious and full of the swears, so you might want to be careful where you watch it.
Owen Wilson Joins the Cast of Wonder
So, I think(?) we mentioned that Wonder is gonna be a movie, and that Julia Roberts is gonna play the mom. Now we’ve added Owen Wilson to the cast!
Jacob Tremblay, who broke out last year in “Room,” is also attached to star as August Pullman, who was born with facial differences that prevented him from going to a mainstream school earlier in life — and then became an unlikely hero when he entered the local fifth grade.
Lionsgate recently dated the movie for April 7. Stephen Chbosky is directing from a script by Jack Thorne and Steve Conrad.
Synopsis from goodreads:
I won’t describe what I look like. Whatever you’re thinking, it’s probably worse.
August (Auggie) Pullman was born with a facial deformity that prevented him from going to a mainstream school—until now. He’s about to start 5th grade at Beecher Prep, and if you’ve ever been the new kid then you know how hard that can be. The thing is Auggie’s just an ordinary kid, with an extraordinary face. But can he convince his new classmates that he’s just like them, despite appearances?
Director Picked For Darkest Minds
To be honest, I haven’t even heard of this YA book before. But, apparently it will be a movie and will now have a director!
“Kung Fu Panda 3” director Jennifer Yuh Nelson is attached to make her live-action directorial debut with “Darkest Minds” in a potential franchise starter for Fox.
The movie is an adaptation of the YA trilogy by Alexandra Bracken in which a pandemic kills most of America’s children and teenagers. When some of the survivors develop superpowers, they are imprisoned.
In the seeming tradition of YA adventures, Alexandra Bracken’s story is set in a alternate world. In this case, it’s one where a pandemic has killed off most of America’s kids and teenagers. Some of the survivors develop superpowers, which worries society at large and those with newfound abilities are sent to internment camps.
Our protagonist for at least the first story is a 16-year-old who develops telekinetic powers and decides to break out of her camp,. She ends up on the run with like-minded (and powered) teens who are trying to escape the government’s clutches.
Fox-based Shawn Levy is producing through his 21 Laps company along with Dan Levine and Dan Cohen.
The script has been written by Chad Hodge, who’s the creator, showrunner and executive producer of TNT’s upcoming series “Good Behavior.“ Hodge created and executive-produced Fox’s hit summer series “Wayward Pines.”
JK Rowling Will Keep Her Job For A Long Time
Hahahaha! This was the funny story I’ve read all week! You know about neural networks, right? They are computer algorithms (fancy talk for lines of code put together by somebody to do something) meant to mimic the human brain. The key word here is mimic. Neural networks have done everything from beating people at board games, to taking an audio Turing Test (a fancy way test the intelligence of a computer). But are they good at writing? So far, no dice!
Max Deutsch, who trained an LSTM (Long Short Term Memory) Recurrent Neural Network with the first four Harry Potter books, has long been interested in seeing if artificial intelligences can mimic human writing. “In 6th grade,” he says on his website, “I sold essay-writing software to my friends in the cafeteria. I thought it used artificial intelligence, but it was basically a Mad Lib on a CD-ROM.”
The results with the LSTM network make even less sense than Mad Libs. There’s no sense of plotting and structure, and the algorithm continually adds characters in on top of each other, turning Harry Potter into a surreal text with no clear purpose or meaning.
From Part 2:
Ron didn’t even upset her little ingredients on the toilet, and a group of third-year girls last year. Highly bushy and then burst away from them quickly.
“Thought you’re all right?” he said.
Harry grinned at Harry. “Why should she be cheerful so while you gave detentions, Moody!”
“Or give them a hang of the fires and tell me — it’ll come and finish me in this Quidditch Diggory all been an Animagus like a moment,” Dumbledore snapped.
“Sorry, I think you please, if it will be waiting for you after this, and it’s like if Dobby has learned to register this?”
He was just getting great, look down again and — why, but the name didn’t come. Sirius had run with these telephone scabbed lips mounted on Snape’s pocket and Cornelius Fudge burst into three houses, which burst out into the office, after many candles all flickering behind him.
New Service Offers One Hour Book Delivery!
Everyone is saying this will be the end of Amazon, but let’s be real. They’re just going to steal the idea, right? Still, the offer is appealing… any book I want in 1 hour? Sign me up, please!
The company is called NearSt., and it’s deploying a small army of book-toting scooter and bike messengers around London. Here’s how the service works: choose your book on the company’s site or app, enter your location, then decide whether you want Garth Greenwell’s What Belongs to You, Don Delillo’s Zero K, or Helen Oyeyemi’s What Is Not Yours Is Not Yours delivered to your doorstep quick as a Domino’s pizza, or whether you’d rather pop down to your local independent bookseller to pick up the book yourself. According to The Guardian, NearSt. is already working with 40 London bookshops, each of which is syncing up internal inventory systems to the site so that customers can be sure that the book they want is close by and ready.
There is no official word if or when NearSt. may link up with American booksellers, but CEO Nick Brackenbury has spoken of his desire for the start-up to expand its product category and its reach: “the ultimate goal [is] having every product in every shop in every high street on the platform at a global scale…we’re very excited by what lies ahead for local commerce, and what we can achieve with local businesses everywhere.” Clearly not hiding his ambition for the platform, Brackenbury has also stated his start-up is “absolutely” out to challenge the likes of Amazon.
So far, the testimonials from booksellers sound pretty glowing. Betsy Tobin, of London bookshop Ink@84, told The Guardian it’s “dead easy: an automated phone call asks you to double-check stock is physically there, then press a button to acknowledge. A very streamlined process. My staff person has just drawn an interesting parallel with Pokémon Go, in that people enjoy using tech to track down a product but also like the physical/social process of going out to get it.”
I really hope this is well planned, because it sounds unwieldy and expensive. How much do you have to pay to have a flock of delivery people waiting to deliver books at any time of day.
Google Erases Author’s Blog Over Graphic Content?
This story is disturbing on so many levels. First of all, to not have a back up of your blog when you say it has such original content is not the best choice. Like, if my blog disappeared tomorrow, I wouldn’t care. It’s only my thoughts on there, nothing major. BUT, if I wanted to back it up, I’d just go into settings->other and hit the “back up” button. DUDE ALWAYS BACK UP YOUR STUFF. Learned that lesson the hard way.
And then… Google is deleting people’s content? Like for real? That is some Grade A big brother type shit right there. Like, no appeals process, no arguments, no chance to remove questionable content??? Just deleted. Harsh. But let’s get to the details:
On June 27, when writer Dennis Cooper tried to access his blog—hosted by Blogger since 2002—he discovered that Google had deleted his fourteen-year project along with his Gmail account. Since then, readers have been greeted with a message simply stating, “Sorry, the blog at denniscooper-theweaklings.blogspot.com has been removed. This address is not available for new blogs.”
Cooper tried reaching out to the technology giant via phone and numerous emails, but has only received a generic statement about a “violation of the terms of service agreement”; he has not been offered any precise explanation. “There seems to be some major stonewalling coming from somewhere, but I don’t know where or why,” he wrote in a Facebook post.
After consulting a French lawyer who specializes in intellectual property law and who has volunteered to help, Cooper said Google has launched internal investigations, but they have led nowhere. “It seems that the only option I have left is to sue Google,” Cooper said. “This will not be easy for me for the obvious reasons, but I’m not going to just give up ten years of my and others’ work without doing everything possible.”
Known for his graphic treatment of sex in his works, some critics consider his stories pornography, and writer David Ehrenstein, commenting on Cooper’s Facebook page, suggested that someone might have complained about Cooper’s escort series, for which the writer gathers preexisting profiles/ads from online sites where male escorts offer their services and edits them “to emphasize their accidental literary qualities and their emotional/psychological power.” (The blog features a standard warning requesting that users confirm they are eighteen or older.) Yet Cooper had posted risqué work on his blog for years, and the posts would not explain the deletion of his email address.
The bad news is… he has to sue Google to get access to his stuff. The good news is, there is a lot of it at the internet archive if you’re curious what it looked like.
Man Arrested In Missing Author Case
The story of missing author Helen Bailey is so sad. Out walking her dog and then just… gone. It looks like there has been some resolution in the case, though.
A man has been arrested on suspicion of murder as police continue to look into the disappearance of the author Helen Bailey.
The 51-year-old children’s novelist has been missing for three months. She was last seen on 11 April, several weeks after the fifth anniversary of the death of her husband, John Sinfield, who drowned after being caught in a riptide in Barbados during a holiday in February 2011.
A 55-year-old man from Royston was arrested on Monday morning and is being questioned on suspicion of murder, disposing of a body in a manner likely to obstruct the coroner, and theft of money belonging to Bailey, Hertfordshire police said.
The force said: “Significant inquiries and searches have already been made as part of the investigation to trace Helen and further searches at her home address in Royston and an address in Broadstairs in Kent are taking place today.”
The last sighting of Bailey, who wrote the Electra Brown novels, was with her dog near her home in Royston. Later in April, extensive searches were carried out at her holiday home in Broadstairs, where friends initially said they believed the author might have gone for “some time to herself”.
Natalie Portman is Penpals with an Author (and poses in bathing suits like every serious director does. I think Steven Spielberg did it once.)