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The Curved House BlogInspiration, Tips and Projects from The Curved House

The Making of a Modern Classic(s)


‘Definition of a classic: a book everyone is assumed to have read and often thinks they have.’
Alan Bennett

Faber and Faber have just launched their very own series of modern classics, recontextualising their back catalogue and re-introducing us to the many gems from their illustrious exploits in publishing. Modern classics are a particularly interesting sort, a sort of exercise in clairvoyancy for shaping the ongoing cannon of literature. And indeed, for publishers with ever growing back catalogues, the modern classic is a fantastic way to ensure great stories continue to stand the test of time, alongside their established counterparts. So what makes a modern classic, both in terms of content and design?

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We’re back to work after a glorious Easter weekend spent reading, reading and reading some more. Having reignited our flame with all things literary, we feel like sharing some of our favourite and incredibly well curated litmags with you.

These journals and magazines constantly commission brilliantly innovative and fresh new writing in all its forms- from poetry and fiction to non-fiction and reviews. We’re always in awe of the amount of work that goes in to each edition, from the design, to the cover to the content itself. This is even more impressive given that most of these journals rely and survive on subscriptions and donations in an age where content is expected for free.

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Visual Verse: April Edition


Easter falls early this year, just in time for the launch of April’s Visual Verse. Whether you go all out for the traditional post-lent roast lamb or keep it low key with take-away, Easter is a time to gather, relax and feast with family and friends. In keeping with this, our April edition of Visual Verse is an homage to the art of eating and the rituals that come with it. With family in mind, we want to share and celebrate our April editions with our Visual Verse kin. Without the inspired, instinctive words of all our writers, we would have nothing to publish. So, dear writers, this very special edition of Visual Verse is dedicated to you.

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Virginia Woolf and Children’s Literature


100 years ago today Virginia Woolf published her very first novel, The Voyage Out. We thought we’d celebrate Woolf by having a look at her children’s books…

Woolf is not always remembered for her whimsical children’s books. Brilliant, sometimes intimidating, challenging, modernist fiction- yes. Children’s books about animals- no. Read More

2015 in covers. Our favourites so far.


There has been a lot of book release talk over the past few weeks, from the announcement of the publication Harper Lee’s prequel to To Kill A Mockingbird and Kazuo Ishiguro’s return to the literary world after a 10 year hiatus with the fantasy The Buried Giant (an event fittingly marked with another lovely Peter Mendelsund cover pictured above). We thought we’d get involved by judging the 2015 book releases solely by their covers. So below, have a look at some of the covers and trends that have caught our eye. Read More

10 Authors Who Really Get Twitter


Twitter can be an intimidating place. Anyone can set up an account and retweet interesting Tweets and share articles, but who among us is actually creating original and inspiring content? We found 10 writers who are nailing Twitter at the moment.

Their secret? These writers mix up their posts: there’s original content and retweeting, philosophical meanderings, inspirational words, following a cause, shouting out to their mates (promoting) and themselves (self-promotion), photos and videos. But most importantly perhaps, they remain engaged and post regularly.

Perfect Twitter principles for any aspiring author – here’s the lineup of our dream Twitter Author Team. Follow, read and learn: Read More

Reading Inspiration: Women in Letters


It’s International Women’s Day this Sunday 8th March – a day that has been observed since in the early 1900’s. Back then, great expansion and turbulence in the industrialised world resulted in their societies turned upside down. Radical ideologies – including the exceptionally radical idea that women have a right to be heard – began to take root.

Now, International Women’s Day is held across the world. With a focus this year on “Make it Happen”, the goals of IWD are all about ensuring women get equal representation and recognition. And we always feel like all good writing deserves ongoing champions. So, inspired by the “Make it Happen” line, we’ve come up with a little side project we’ve started work on: Women in Letters.

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Introducing – The Family Project


New Guardian-Faber book, The Family Project, is part memoir, part scrapbook, part game – a shell filled with ideas, projects and exercises that help you discover your family in all its idiosyncratic, personal glory.

A little while ago, a husband and wife journalist duo sat down to create a book that celebrated the idea of family. Harriet Green – who runs the Guardian’s Family section – and John-Paul Flintoff – who worked at the Sunday Times and Financial Times are the brains behind Guardian-Faber’s newest title.

This isn’t a typical book, and nor was this a typical brief. The Family Project comprises a series of exercises that allow you to create a scrapbook-style journal of your family history. Much like Keri Smith’s Wreck This Journal or Quentin Blake’s Drawing for the Artistically Undiscovered, this is the kind of interactive book that relies on the creativity of the reader. Each exercise is just the beginning, waiting to be finished, and for those who know our work at Curved House Kids, you’ll understand exactly why we fell in love with the book from the beginning.

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