It’s Small Press Week! Look for these hashtags this week on Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, Instagram, and other social media sites:
Today, we’re sharing some secrets and behind-the-scenes glimpses of life in small press publishing.
Small presses come in all kinds of different shapes and sizes. Some use digital typesetting and print-on-demand technology to fulfill orders one at a time, while others produce limited editions on small letterpress machines of their own, while still others order a few thousand copies from a printer and maintain an inventory. Some run their own associated online or physical bookstores. Some employ 30 people and some are one person’s passionate hobby.
Upper Rubber Boot is a micropress, because of the small number of titles we release a year (typically 2 or 3). Because of our low profits, I run URB as a part-time job, while holding down a full-time job as a program co-ordinator and admin at a local hospital. It can be tiring! Some days I’m exhausted and overwhelmed. But it also means I can choose projects with very slim margins, or which I know will lose me a small amount of money (most of our poetry titles lose money in their first year, and some never break even). I have a lot of freedom to publish what I love.
I also have an almost pathological need to create order out of disorder, and getting everything just right scratches that itch for me. And it’s an amazing privilege to be able to work with so many intensely talented writers, and to make actual physical things that go out into the world and have a life independent of me. Curating the stories that will appear in an anthology, or helping one of my editors to take a book from cradle to—well, not grave, since none of our titles are out of print, so let’s say, healthy middle age—is extremely satisfying work.
20 November 2016
|Containing a poetry chapbook by Enid Shomer, another chapbook co-written by Cave Canem fellows F. Douglas Brown and Geffrey Davis, and a third chapbook co-written by brothers Anders and Kai Carlson-Wee, Floodgate Poetry Series Vol. 3 was released 15 November 2016.
Discuss this book at Goodreads.
About Floodgate Poetry Series Vol. 3:
Floodgate Poetry Series Vol. 3 collects three chapbooks in a single volume: brothers Anders and Kai Carlson-Wee’s Northern Corn invites us on a trip across an America of dust, trains, poverty, dignity, and dreams; Begotten, co-written by Cave Canem fellows F. Douglas Brown and Geffrey Davis, bravely and tenderly explores fatherhood in the era of Black Lives Matter; and Enid Shomer’s Driving through the Animal lovingly moves between unflinching witness of destruction and hope for the future.
It’s the third volume in the Floodgate Poetry Series, edited by Andrew McFadyen-Ketchum. Chapbooks—short books under 40 pages—arose when printed books became affordable in the 16th century. The series is in the tradition of 18th and 19th century British and American literary annuals, and the Penguin Modern Poets Series of the 1960s and ’70s.
Anders Carlson-Wee is a 2015 National Endowment for the Arts Creative Writing Fellow and the author of Dynamite, winner of the 2015 Frost Place Chapbook Competition (Bull City Press). His work has appeared in Ploughshares, New England Review, Narrative Magazine, AGNI, Poetry Daily, The Missouri Review, The Southern Review, Best New Poets, The Best American Nonrequired Reading series, and many other journals. The recipient of Ninth Letter‘s Poetry Award and New Delta Review‘s Editors’ Choice Prize, he was named runner up for the 2016 Discovery/Boston Review Poetry Prize. Anders lives in Minneapolis, where he is a 2016 McKnight Foundation Creative Writing Fellow.
Kai Carlson-Wee is the author of RAIL, forthcoming from BOA Editions. He has received fellowships from the MacDowell Colony, the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference, the Sewanee Writers’ Conference, and his work has appeared in Narrative, Best New Poets, Blackbird, Crazyhorse, and The Missouri Review, which selected his poems for the 2013 Editor’s Prize. His photography has been featured in Narrative Magazine and his co-directed poetry film, Riding the Highline, received jury awards at the 2015 Napa Valley Film Festival and the 2016 Arizona International Film Festival. A former Wallace Stegner Fellow, he lives in San Francisco and teaches poetry at Stanford University.
Together, they have coauthored two other chapbooks: Mercy Songs (Diode Editions) and Two-Headed Boy (Organic Weapon Arts), winner of the 2015 David Blair Memorial Chapbook Prize.
F. Douglas Brown is the author of Zero to Three (University of Georgia Press 2014), recipient of the 2013 Cave Canem Poetry Prize, selected by Tracy K. Smith. Brown holds an MA in Literature and Creative Writing from San Francisco State University, and is both a Cave Canem and Kundiman fellow. His poems have been published by The Academy of American Poets, The Chicago Quarterly (CQR), The Virginia Quarterly (VQR), The Sugar House Review, Cura Magazine, Vinyl Poetry and Prose Magazine, and Muzzle Magazine. Brown was featured in Poets & Writers Magazine as one of their Debut Poets of 2014 (Jan/Feb 2015).
He has been an educator for over twenty years, and teaches English at Loyola High School of Los Angeles, an all-boys Jesuit school. When he is not teaching, writing or with his two children, Isaiah and Olivia, he is busy DJing in the greater Los Angeles area.
Geffrey Davis is the author of Revising the Storm (BOA Editions 2014), winner of the A. Poulin, Jr. Poetry Prize and a Hurston/Wright Legacy Award Finalist. His honors include fellowships from the Cave Canem Foundation and the Vermont Studio Center, the Anne Halley Poetry Prize, the Dogwood Prize in Poetry, the Wabash Prize for Poetry, the Leonard Steinberg Memorial/Academy of American Poets Prize, and nominations for the Pushcart Prize. His poems have been published by The Academy of American Poets, Crazyhorse, The Greensboro Review, The Massachusetts Review, Mississippi Review, The New York Times Magazine, Nimrod, and Sycamore Review, among other places. Davis grew up in Tacoma, Washington—though he was raised by much more of the Pacific Northwest—and he teaches in the MFA Program at the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville.
Enid Shomer is the author of four previous books of poetry, two chapbooks, and three prize-winning books of fiction, most recently The Twelve Rooms of the Nile (Simon & Schuster, 2012). Her work has appeared in The Atlantic Monthly, The New Yorker, Poetry, Paris Review, Parnassus, Boulevard, and many other magazines as well as more than sixty anthologies and textbooks. In 2013 she received the Lifetime Achievement Award in Writing from the Florida Humanities Council. Among her many poetry prizes are the Eunice Tietjens Memorial Prize from Poetry, the Celia B. Wagner Award from the Poetry Society of America, and the Randall Jarrell Poetry Prize. She has twice been the subject of feature interviews on National Public Radio—on “All Things Considered” and “Sunday Edition.” A Visiting Writer at many colleges and universities, Shomer lives in Tampa, Florida. Her new full-length book of poetry, Shoreless, won the Vachel Lindsay Prize and is forthcoming in 2017 from Twelve Winters Press.
Buy Floodgate Poetry Series Vol. 3:
Buy it in paperback (ISBN 978-1-937794-81-1) from:
- Amazon (Canada; France; Germany; Italy; Japan; Spain; UK; USA)
- Wordery (UK, but offers free worldwide delivery)
- Select from here to support independent bookstores:
- Barnes & Noble (USA)
- Books a Million (USA)
- Good Books (Amazon-affiliated bookstore benefitting Oxfam: USA)
- Select from here to support independent bookstores:
- Abebooks (Canada)
- UK & Europe
- or, order it from bookstores which use Ingram Distributors.
Buy the ebook (ISBN 978-1-937794-83-5; epub)—forthcoming.
Buy the Kindle version (ISBN 978-1-937794-37-8; mobi) from:
- Amazon (AU; BR; CA; DE; ES; FR; IN; IT; JP; MX; UK; US).
- Good Books (Amazon-affiliated bookstore benefitting Oxfam: USA)
Reviews of Floodgate Poetry Series Vol. 3:
Northern Corn invites us into a dream America is having about itself, wherein the voices are both the road and the kicked-up gravel dust, memory and the occasion for memory, the flame and its shadow. An entrancing investigation of place and self and other, a spell one never wants broken.
—Michael McGriff, on Northern Corn by Anders Carlson-Wee & Kai Carlson-Wee
The argument Northern Corn makes in poem after beautiful poem—the eyes are connected to the mouth is connected to the heart—is one I am glad is in the world.
—Ross Gay, on Northern Corn by Anders Carlson-Wee & Kai Carlson-Wee
The imagined and the unsaid collide head on with specifics so sensory they burn, they freeze, they illuminate, and they turn off the lights at once, leave you in a darkness where everything is at its brightest. These voices have kidnapped me.
—Laura Kasischke, on Northern Corn by Anders Carlson-Wee & Kai Carlson-Wee
Begotten captures the bliss, consternation and heart-thumping ruckus of being both parent and child. A wild and tender ride.
—Tracy K. Smith, on Begotten by F. Douglas Brown & Geffrey Davis
Brown and Davis riff off each other’s work, while embodying in their virtuoso poems a rich chorus of familial voices. Raw, tender, headlong, and scared, these poems about fathers and sons walk the knife’s edge of being a parent in the era of black lives matter. Complexity abounds—’the many sounds that can break a thought/into still sharper shards of thinking’—and despite the generational wounds, the single constant expressed so variously and valiantly in these musical poems is love. Begotten portrays fatherhood with dazzling originality. Don’t miss this book.
—Barbara Ras, on Begotten by F. Douglas Brown & Geffrey Davis
“Have I done anything right” ends one poem in this tough, concentrated collection of tender lyric and formal exploration, but the anxiety runs throughout. Brown and Davis trade flows like an Old School hip-hop duo even as the speakers here trade subjectivities—a son to a father, a father to a son. But that very fluidity rhymes with slipperiness—how precarious the inheritance of father to child when to be someone’s spitting image is to risk being worth the same as saliva on a street. How do dads of sons dance in their twin bodies with and for each other, mothers and daughters, wives and beautiful boys? In Begotten, the poets do the steps and missteps again and again to a rich music that buzzes with pops’s fragile cassette tapes, an old-timey tune cut to a fray of light on loop, the blood-blue pulse of sex, and a live feed from cell- and dash-cams. Make no mistake, these are love poems, maybe because they are fatherhood poems, but likely because the poets want desperately to get fatherhood right(ed) despite their own unstable footing.
—Douglas Kearney, on Begotten by F. Douglas Brown & Geffrey Davis
In Driving through the Animal, Enid Shomer writes of her landscape the way a lover describes the body of their beloved; attention to each freckle, cleft, and scar. With crisp formalism and exquisite detail that calls to mind the sea-worn odes of Seamus Heaney and bodily-fluid-soaked lyric of Kim Addonizio, Enid has crafted an erotic and sobering love song for our dying world, one that asks us to glimpse “the perfume hoarded all day by bees” and insists, “through radiance and filth, through blubbering grief and parabolas of rage,” that we not look away.
—Kendra DeColo, on Driving through the Animal by Enid Shomer
In Enid Shomer’s Driving through the Animal, she is, as she states, a “clear daughter of the tides,” which perhaps explains why her mind moves so deftly between inner and outer concerns, between music and silence, between plenty and scarcity, and between a hope for the future and a reckoning with death. Though her landscapes offer a “visual blessing,” they also wrestle with a frightening diminishment, sometimes ecological and sometimes personal. “It’s hard work to ponder one’s moral/failings,” she confesses; yet, like plovers burying eggs in beach sand—too often “reduced by the smallest foot to a yellow stain”—Shomer nudges her poems into place, trying to offer “a pure voice,” never more endangered than now.
—Jeff Hardin, on Driving through the Animal by Enid Shomer
Enid Shomer’s striking new chapbook, Driving through the Animal, takes the reader into timeless natural kingdoms and on to the immediacy of human relationship with the fluidity of water—back and forth, up and down we go. She gracefully exploits what language can accomplish and the way in which it bridges seemingly permanent distances. Many of these poems hang on the cusp of the temporal as in “a spangled globule on the oily feather of a bird.” Such exactly seen miniscule imagery holds ephemera in space thus extending and slowing the reader’s perceptive field. Delight in Enid Shomer as the record keeper of varied and shifting coastlines—those of vital literal and figurative substance.
—Katherine Soniat, on Driving through the Animal by Enid Shomer
2 comments 15 November 2016
Small presses, the authors they’ve published, and the readers who love them, will talk about exciting new releases, classic back-catalogue titles, and what makes small press publishing so fearless, intimate, creative, and heart-warming—using the hashtag #SPWeek16.
We’ll also have 7 one-day hashtags, each concentrating on a different facet of publishing:
Sunday November 20
Kick off #SPWeek16 with some secrets! Provide a behind-the-scenes glimpse of your process, press, or people.
Monday November 21
Today is for talking about the history of your press, past employees, the authors you discovered who’ve gone on to win Pulitzers, the stories that still haunt you, and anything else that has gone into making your press unique and its books fantastic.
Tuesday November 22
Every Tuesday is #newreleasetuesday, but this Tuesday is for featuring all of your 2016 releases, no matter when their release date. Zoom in to provide excerpts, close-up photos, and anecdotes about your new books.
Wednesday November 23
What’s on the horizon for your press and its authors? Share your goals and initiatives, your most creative projects, and where you want your press to be in 5, 10, or 100 years!
Thursday November 24
Today is American Thanksgiving, so today we’ll focus on what—and who—makes us grateful to be in publishing!
Friday November 25
Recommend some #FridayReads: what books are you loving that other presses have released? Wherever possible, be sure to tag the authors and publishers you’re praising!
Saturday November 26
Encourage holiday shoppers to support small presses! Talk about what makes small presses special, how you are embedded in your local community, how your titles could only be released by a nimble, innovative publisher, or how independent publishers help writers nurture and sustain the literary conversation. And be sure to talk up your most amazing titles! (You may also want to use #shopsmall for greater visibility, since today is Small Business Saturday.)
Remember to hashtag every post you can with #SPWeek16 so people can find the whole sprawling discussion in one place!
Small presses and their editors can also join us on Facebook.
11 August 2016
|Edited by Joanne Merriam, The Museum of All Things Awesome and That Go Boom is an anthology of science fiction featuring blunt force trauma, explosions, adventure, derring-do, tigers, Martians, zombies, fanged monsters, dinosaurs (alien and domestic), ray guns, rocket ships, and anthropomorphized marshmallows.
Discuss this book at Goodreads.
About this book:
The anthology contains work by 40 authors: fiction by Jim Comer, James Dorr, Aidan Doyle, Tom Doyle, Kendra Fortmeyer, Nick Kocz, David Kopaska-Merkel, Ken Liu, Kelly Luce, Tim Major, Laurent McAllister, Sequoia Nagamatsu, Jerry Oltion, Ursula Pflug, Leonard Richardson, Erica L. Satifka, G. A. Semones, Matthew Sanborn Smith, Bonnie Jo Stufflebeam, Lucy Sussex, Mary A. Turzillo, Nick Wood, and K. Ceres Wright, and poetry by Khadija Anderson, Xochitl-Julisa Bermejo, Kristin Bock, Alicia Cole, Estíbaliz Espinosa (translated by Neil Anderson), Miriam Bird Greenberg, Benjamin Grossberg, Julie Bloss Kelsey, Katie Manning, Martha McCollough, Marc McKee, Richard King Perkins II, Christina Sng, J. J. Steinfeld, Sonya Taaffe, Deborah Walker, and Ali Znaidi.
The actual Museum of All Things Awesome and that Go Boom is housed in the half-kiloSmoot-square, two-centuries-old dancing building, the Old Ptolemy, in the city of Draconis on the planet Epsilon Eridani b.
Table of Contents:
- Khadija Anderson, “Observational Couplets upon returning to Los Angeles from Outer Space”
- Xochitl-Julisa Bermejo, “Photograph of a Secret”
- Kristin Bock, “I Wish I Could Write a Poem about Pole-Vaulting Robots”
- Alicia Cole, “Asteroid Orphan”
- Jim Comer, “Soldier’s Coat”
- James Dorr, “Bubba Claus Conquers the Martians”
- Aidan Doyle, “Mr. Nine and the Gentleman Ghost”
- Tom Doyle, “Crossing Borders”
- Estíbaliz Espinosa, “Dissidence” (translated by Neil Anderson)
- Kendra Fortmeyer, “Squaline”
- Miriam Bird Greenberg, “Brazilian Telephone”
- Benjamin Grossberg, “The Space Traveler and Runaway Stars”
- Julie Bloss Kelsey, two scifaiku
- Nick Kocz, “The Last American Tiger”
- David Kopaska-Merkel, “Captain Marshmallow”
- Ken Liu, “Nova Verba, Mundus Novus”
- Kelly Luce, “Ideal Head of a Woman”
- Tim Major, “Read/Write Head”
- Katie Manning, “Baba Yaga’s Answer”
- Laurent McAllister, “Kapuzine and the Wolf: A Hortatory Tale”
- Martha McCollough, “valley of the talking dolls” and “adventures of cartoon bee”
- Marc McKee, “A Moment in Fill-In-The-Blank City”
- Sequoia Nagamatsu, “Headwater LLC”
- Jerry Oltion, “A Star Is Born”
- Richard King Perkins II, “The Sleeper’s Requiem”
- Ursula Pflug, “Airport Shoes”
- Leonard Richardson, “Let Us Now Praise Awesome Dinosaurs”
- Erica L. Satifka, “Thirty-Six Questions Propounded by the Human-Powered Plasma Bomb in the Moments Before Her Imminent Detonation”
- G. A. Semones, “Never Forget Some Things”
- Matthew Sanborn Smith, “The Empire State Building Strikes Back!”
- Christina Sng, “Medusa in LA”
- J. J. Steinfeld, “The Loudest Sound Imaginable”
- Bonnie Jo Stufflebeam, “The Wanderers”
- Lucy Sussex, “A Sentimental, Sordid Education”
- Sonya Taaffe, “And Black Unfathomable Lakes”
- Mary Turzillo, “Pride”
- Deborah Walker, “Sea Monkey Mermaid”
- Nick Wood, “The Girl Who Called the World”
- K. Ceres Wright, “The Haunting of M117”
- Ali Znaidi, “A Dolphin Scene” and “Australian Horoscope”
About the Contributors:
Butoh dancer, Muslim convert, and Pushcart nominated poet Khadija Anderson has been published extensively in print and online. She holds an MFA in Creative Writing from Antioch University LA and her first book of poetry History of Butoh was published in 2012 through Writ Large Press. Find her at khadijaanderson.com.
Neil Anderson is a translator and teacher living in Lubbock, Texas. His translations from Galician have been published in Asymptote, The Bitter Oleander, Shearsman, Absinthe, M-Dash, and elsewhere.
Xochitl-Julisa Bermejo is the 2013 Poets & Writers California Writers Exchange poetry winner. She has work published in American Poetry Review, CALYX, and Acentos Review among others. A short dramatization of her poem “Our Lady of the Water Gallons,” directed by Chicano activist and Hollywood director, Jesús Salvador Treviño can be viewed at latinopia.com. She curates the quarterly reading series HITCHED and co-founded Women Who Submit. Her debut poetry collection, Built with Safe Spaces, is forthcoming from Sundress Publications.
Kristin Bock holds an MFA from the University of Massachusetts—Amherst where she currently teaches. Her poems have appeared in many literary magazines and journals, including VERSE, Columbia, Pleiades, Prairie Schooner, The Black Warrior Review, and FENCE, as well as the URB anthology Apocalypse Now: Poems & Prose from the End of Days. She lives with her husband, artist Geoffrey Kostecki, in Montague, Massachusetts where they refurbish liturgical art. She is also a contributing editor to the literary magazine, Bateau. Bock’s debut collection of poetry, Cloisters, won Tupelo Press’s First Book Award and the da Vinci Eye Award.
Alicia Cole is a recent New Orleanian transplant by way of Atlanta, GA. She’s a professional writer, editor, and artist. Her sci-fi serial Blinded is currently being published by Rainbow Rumpus, and her work has recently appeared on PodCastle, and been reviewed in Dead Reckonings. You can find more of her work at www.facebook.com/AliciaColewriter and https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6470571.Alicia_Cole.
Jim Comer is an author and teacher who lives in Arkansas.
Indiana writer James Dorr‘s The Tears of Isis was a 2014 Bram Stoker Award nominee for Superior Achievement in a Fiction Collection. Other books include Strange Mistresses: Tales of Wonder and Romance, Darker Loves: Tales of Mystery and Regret, and his all-poetry Vamps (A Retrospective). For more, visit Dorr’s blog at jamesdorrwriter.wordpress.com.
Aidan Doyle is an Australian writer and computer programmer. He has visited more than 90 countries and his experiences include teaching English in Japan, interviewing ninjas in Bolivia and going ten-pin bowling in North Korea. Find him at aidandoyle.net and @aidan_doyle.
In 2014, Tor Books published American Craftsmen, Tom Doyle‘s first novel in a three-book deal. The Left-Hand Way followed in 2015. He is a winner of the WSFA Small Press Award and a Writers of the Future Award. His short fiction has appeared in Aeon, Buzzy Mag, Daily Science Fiction, Futurismic, and the URB anthology How to Live on Other Planets: A Handbook for Aspiring Aliens. Paper Golem has published his short story collection, The Wizard of Macatawa and Other Stories.
Estíbaliz Espinosa is a Spanish- and Galician-language writer, author of the books Pan (libro de ler e desler) (2000); -orama (2002); Número e (2004); zoommm. textos biónicos (2007); and Curiosidade (2015). Find her at estibalizes.wordpress.com.
Kendra Fortmeyer received her MFA in fiction from UT Austin, and is the fiction editor for Broad! magazine. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in PANK, NANO Fiction, Forge, apt, Juked, Fiddleblack (under pen name Zoe Abramson), Corium and elsewhere.
Miriam Bird Greenberg is the author of the chapbooks All night in the new country and Pact-Blood, Fever Grass, and her work has been awarded fellowships from the Poetry Foundation, the Provincetown Fine Arts Work Center, and the NEA. She lives in Berkeley and teaches ESL.
Benjamin S. Grossberg is Director of Creative Writing at The University of Hartford. His most recent book of poems, Space Traveler, was published by the University of Tampa Press in spring of 2014. His earlier collections include Sweet Core Orchard (University of Tampa, 2009), winner of the 2008 Tampa Review Prize and a Lambda Literary Award.
Julie Bloss Kelsey writes speculative poetry and short stories from her home in suburban Maryland. Her work has been published in Scifaikuest, Seven by Twenty, Eye to the Telescope, Star*Line, and Mad Scientist Journal, among others. She is currently writing a scifaiku chapbook about an ill-fated alien romance. Visit her on Twitter @MamaJoules.
Nick Kocz‘s stories and essays have appeared in Black Warrior Review, Entropy, Five Chapters, Mid-American Review, and The Nervous Breakdown. He has an MFA from Virginia Tech and is the recipient of fellowships from the MacDowell Colony and Virginia Tech. He lives in Blacksburg, VA with his wife and three children.
An aether compactor by trade, David C. Kopaska-Merkel began writing poetry after witnessing the Ascension of Tim. He won the Rhysling award for best long poem in 2006 for a collaboration with Kendall Evans. He has written 23 books, of which one of the latest is SETI Hits Paydirt (Popcorn Press, 2014). Kopaska-Merkel has edited Dreams & Nightmares since 1986.
Ken Liu is an author and translator of speculative fiction, as well as a lawyer and programmer. A winner of the Nebula, Hugo, and World Fantasy Awards, he has been published in The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction, Asimov’s, Analog, Clarkesworld, Lightspeed, and Strange Horizons, among other places. He lives with his family near Boston, Massachusetts. Saga Press, Simon & Schuster’s new genre fiction imprint, published his debut novel, The Grace of Kings, in 2015, and will publish a collection of his short stories, The Paper Menagerie and Other Stories, in 2016.
Kelly Luce‘s story collection, Three Scenarios in Which Hana Sasaki Grows a Tail, won the 2013 Foreword Review‘s Editors Choice Prize in Fiction. Her debut novel, Pull Me Under, will be published by Farrar, Straus and Giroux in 2016. A Contributing Editor for Electric Literature, she hails from Illinois and lives in Santa Cruz, California.
Tim Major lives in Oxford with his wife and son. His time-travel novel, You Don’t Belong Here, will be published by Snowbooks in September 2016 and his horror novella, Carus & Mitch, was published by Omnium Gatherum in February 2015. His short stories have featured in Interzone, Perihelion, Every Day Fiction, and numerous anthologies. He is the Editor of the SF magazine, The Singularity, and also blogs at cosycatastrophes.wordpress.com.
Katie Manning is the author of three poetry chapbooks, including The Gospel of the Bleeding Woman. She has received The Nassau Review Author Award for Poetry, and her writing has been published in Fairy Tale Review, New Letters, PANK, Poet Lore, and elsewhere. She is the founding Editor-in-Chief of Whale Road Review, and she is an Assistant Professor of Writing at Point Loma Nazarene University in San Diego. Find her online at katiemanningpoet.com.
Laurent McAllister is the symbionym of a duo of Canadian writers, Yves Meynard and Jean-Louis Trudel. Since 1984, they have published extensively in French and in English, penning under the McAllister identity one award-winning novel, Suprématie (2009), one collection, three young adult books, and several short stories. Writing separately, they have authored nearly 40 books, and many more short stories. Tor published Meynard’s fantasy novel Chrysanthe in 2012. Trudel’s short story “The Snows of Yesteryear” was included in the John Joseph Adams anthology Loosed Upon the World from Saga in 2015.
Martha McCollough is an artist and writer who lives in Chelsea, Massachusetts. Her videopoems have been exhibited at festivals and conferences internationally, and have appeared in Rattapallax, Gone Lawn, and TriQuarterly. Her poems have appeared or are forthcoming in Small Po[r]tions, Cream City Review, and Salamander.
Marc McKee received an MFA from the University of Houston and a PhD from the University of Missouri at Columbia, where he lives with his wife, Camellia Cosgray. His work has appeared in several journals, among them Barn Owl Review, Boston Review, Cimarron Review, Conduit, Crazyhorse, DIAGRAM, Forklift, Ohio, LIT, and Pleiades. He is the author of the chapbook What Apocalypse?, which won the New Michigan Press/DIAGRAM 2008 Chapbook Contest, and two full-length collections, Fuse (Black Lawrence Press, 2011) and Bewilderness (Black Lawrence Press, 2014).
Sequoia Nagamatsu is the author of the Japanese folklore inspired story collection, Where We Go When All We Were Is Gone (Black Lawrence Press). His work has appeared in journals such as Conjunctions, Lightspeed Magazine, Zyzzyva, The Fairy Tale Review, Tin House online, and Black Warrior Review. He is the managing editor of Psychopomp Magazine and an assistant professor of creative writing at St. Olaf College in Minnesota. More info at http://sequoianagamatsu.net.
Jerry Oltion has had over 150 short stories and 15 novels published over the last 30 years, and is still hard at it. He has become the most frequently published author in the history of Analog magazine, and has won the Nebula Award for his novella, “Abandon in Place.” He is mostly known for hard science fiction with a human, often humorous touch.
Richard King Perkins II is a state-sponsored advocate for residents in long-term care facilities. He has a wife, Vickie and a daughter, Sage. He is a three-time Pushcart nominee and a Best of the Net nominee whose work has appeared or is forthcoming in hundreds of publications including Bluestem, December Magazine, Emrys Journal, Poetry Salzburg Review, Roanoke Review, Sierra Nevada Review, The Louisiana Review, The Red Cedar Review, The William and Mary Review, and Two Thirds North.
Ursula Pflug is the critically acclaimed author of the novels Green Music (Edge/Tesseract), The Alphabet Stones (Blue Denim) and Motion Sickness (Inanna; illustrated by S.K. Dyment). She penned the story collections After the Fires (Tightrope) and Harvesting the Moon (PS). She edited the anthologies They Have To Take You In (Hidden Brook) and Playground of Lost Toys (Exile; with Colleen Anderson.) A YA novella, Mountain, is forthcoming from Inanna. She teaches creative writing workshops at Loyalist College, Trent University (with Derek Newman-Stille) and elsewhere. She has collaborated with filmmakers, dancers, and installation artists and her short fiction has been taught at universities in Canada and India. Find her at ursulapflug.ca.
Leonard Richardson became a programmer because paleontology involved too much outdoor work. He writes prose and open source software from his home in New York. For more about him, go to www.crummy.com.
Erica L. Satifka‘s fiction has appeared in Daily Science Fiction, Clarkesworld, and Shimmer as well as URB’s anthology How to Live on Other Planets.
Weaned on fairy tales and hero adventures, G. A. Semones remembers reading his first space opera when about nine years old. He began writing in his teens and writes primarily fantasy and science fiction. He is a Liberty Hall Writers denizen. A software engineer, he has built scary things that self-heal and self-organize. He is a devoted husband, dad and granddad who, when not writing, enjoys history, antique cryptography, fossils, reading, and gardening with his wife. His work has appeared on The Drabblecast, Ray Gun Revival, and Alternate Hilarities, among others.
Matthew Sanborn Smith is a South Floridian speculative fiction author whose fiction has appeared at Tor.com, Nature, Chizine, and Diabolical Plots among others. He is an occasional contributor to the StarShipSofa, SF Signal, and SFF Audio podcasts. His collection, The Dritty Doesen: Some of the Least Reasonable Stories of Matthew Sanborn Smith, is waiting patiently for just the right reader, and his podcast, Beware the Hairy Mango, is adored by dozens.
Christina Sng is a Rhysling-nominated poet, writer, and artist. Her work has received several Honorable Mentions in the Year’s Best Fantasy and Horror. She is the author of three chapbooks and her first full-length book of poetry, A Collection of Nightmares from Raw Dog Screaming Press arrives late 2016. Visit her online at christinasng.com.
Canadian J. J. Steinfeld lives on Prince Edward Island, where he is patiently waiting for Godot’s arrival and a phone call from Kafka. While waiting, he has published sixteen books, including the short story collections Disturbing Identities (Ekstasis Editions), Should the Word Hell Be Capitalized? (Gaspereau Press), Would You Hide Me? (Gaspereau Press), A Glass Shard and Memory (Recliner Books), and Madhouses in Heaven, Castles in Hell (Ekstasis Editions), the novels Our Hero in the Cradle of Confederation (Pottersfield Press) and Word Burials (Crossing Chaos Enigmatic Ink), and the poetry collections An Affection for Precipices (Serengeti Press), Misshapenness (Ekstasis Editions), and Identity Dreams and Memory Sounds (Ekstasis Editions). His short stories and poems have appeared in numerous anthologies and periodicals internationally, and over forty of his one-act plays and a handful of full-length plays have been performed in Canada and the United States.
Bonnie Jo Stufflebeam lives in Texas with her partner and two literarily-named cats: Gimli and Don Quixote. Her work has appeared in magazines such as Clarkesworld, Lightspeed, Strange Horizons, and Interzone. She holds an MFA in Creative Writing from the University of Southern Maine’s Stonecoast program and curates an annual Art & Words Show, profiled in Poets & Writers. Bonnie is represented by Ann Collette at Rees Literary. You can visit her on Twitter @BonnieJoStuffle or through her website: www.bonniejostufflebeam.com.
Lucy Sussex was born in New Zealand. She has edited four anthologies, including She’s Fantastical (1995), shortlisted for the World Fantasy Award. Her award-winning fiction includes books for younger readers and the novel The Scarlet Rider. She has five short story collections, My Lady Tongue, A Tour Guide in Utopia, Absolute Uncertainty, Matilda Told Such Dreadful Lies (a best of), and Thief of Lives. Her latest project is Blockbuster!: Fergus Hume and the Mystery of a Hansom Cab.
Sonya Taaffe‘s short fiction and poetry can be found in the collections Ghost Signs (Aqueduct Press), A Mayse-Bikhl (Papaveria Press), Postcards from the Province of Hyphens (Prime Books), and Singing Innocence and Experience (Prime Books), and in various anthologies including The Humanity of Monsters, Genius Loci: Tales of the Spirit of Place, and Dreams from the Witch House: Female Voices of Lovecraftian Horror. She is currently senior poetry editor at Strange Horizons; she holds master’s degrees in Classics from Brandeis and Yale and once named a Kuiper belt object. She lives in Somerville with her husband and two cats.
Mary Turzillo‘s 1999 Nebula-winner, “Mars Is no Place for Children” and Analog novel An Old-Fashioned Martian Girl are recommended reading on the International Space Station. Her poetry collection Lovers & Killers won the 2013 Elgin Award for Best Collection, and she has been a finalist on the British SFA, Pushcart, Stoker, Dwarf Stars and Rhysling ballots. Sweet Poison, her collaboration with Marge Simon, came out from Dark Renaissance in 2014. She lives in Berea, Ohio, with her scientist-writer husband, Geoffrey A. Landis.
Deborah Walker grew up in the most English town in the country, but she soon high-tailed it down to London, where she now lives with her partner, Chris, and her two young children. Find Deborah in the British Museum trawling the past for future inspiration or on her blog, deborahwalkersbibliography.blogspot.com. Her poems have appeared in Dreams & Nightmares, Star*Line, and Enchanted Conversation.
Nick Wood is a South African clinical psychologist, with around twenty short stories previously published in Interzone, Infinity Plus, AfroSF, PostScripts, Redstone Science Fiction, Fierce Family, and How to Live On Other Planets, amongst others. His YA speculative fiction novella The stone chameleon was published in South Africa and his debut novel Azanian Bridges is due to be published in the UK in 2016 by NewCon Press. He has completed an MA in Creative Writing (SF & Fantasy) through Middlesex University, London and is currently training clinical psychologists in London, England. He can be found at @nick45wood or nickwood.frogwrite.co.nz.
K. Ceres Wright received her Master’s degree in Writing Popular Fiction from Seton Hill University in Greensburg, PA, and Cog was her thesis novel for the program. Wright’s science fiction poem, “Doomed,” was a nominee for the Rhysling Award, the Science Fiction Poetry Association’s highest honor. Her work has appeared in Diner Stories, Hazard Yet Forward, Genesis: An Anthology of Black Science Fiction, The 2008 Rhysling Anthology, Far Worlds, The Dark God’s Gift, and Many Genres, One Craft. Find her at www.kcereswright.com or on Twitter @KCeresWright.
Ali Znaidi lives in Redeyef, Tunisia, where he teaches English. He authored four poetry chapbooks including Experimental Ruminations (Fowlpox Press, 2012), Moon’s Cloth Embroidered with Poems (Origami Poems Project, 2012), Bye, Donna Summer! (Fowlpox Press, 2014), and Taste of the Edge (Kind of a Hurricane Press, 2014). You can see more of his work on his blog at aliznaidi.blogspot.com.
About the Editor
Joanne Merriam is the owner and publisher of Upper Rubber Boot Books. She was born in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada and lived thereabouts for her first three decades. In 2001, she quit her job as the Executive Assistant of the Writers’ Federation of Nova Scotia to travel Canada by train, and then parts of the Northeastern and Southern United States. Her first book of poetry, The Glaze from Breaking, was written, in part, about those travels. In 2004, she immigrated to the USA, where she has lived in Kentucky and New Hampshire, and now resides in Nashville, Tennessee.
Joanne Merriam’s poetry and fiction has appeared in dozens of magazines and journals, including The Antigonish Review, Asimov’s Science Fiction, The Fiddlehead, The Furnace Review, Grain, The Magazine of Speculative Poetry, The Mainichi Daily News, Per Contra, Riddle Fence, Room of One’s Own, Strange Horizons and Vallum Contemporary Poetry, as well as in the anthologies Ice: new writing on hockey, To Find Us: Words and Images of Halifax and The Allotment: New Lyric Poets. She most recently edited How to Live on Other Planets: A Handbook for Aspiring Aliens and co-edited Choose Wisely: 35 Women Up To No Good with H. L. Nelson. Visit her at www.joannemerriam.com.
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26 July 2016
23 July 2016
23 July 2016
Slated for release in spring 2017, Sunvault: Stories of Solarpunk & Eco-Speculation is edited by Phoebe Wagner and Brontë Wieland. This anthology focuses on the aftereffects of environmental disasters, but with hope—stories of those inhabiting the crucial moments when great change can be made by the right people with the right tools; stories of people living during tipping points, and the spaces before and after them; and stories of those who fought to effect change and seek solutions, even if it was too late. We are currently taking submissions, through June 4th for fiction and poetry, and June 30th for black and white line art. Details here.
4 May 2016
Joanne Merriam, Upper Rubber Boot Books1
Grammar, Syntax, Usage:
- Is the grammar, punctuation, and spelling correct?
- Does wrong or non-standard syntax serve the purpose of the work?
- Does the diction [ornateness/simplicity] fit the meaning?
- Is there music? Is the music serving the work?
Serving the Reader:
- Is it true?
- Is it ethical?
- Does it go deep enough?
- Is it based on cultures I don’t belong to or don’t have a deep knowledge of? If so, have I run it past people who do belong to those cultures, and/or done extensive research to avoid misrepresentation and mistakes?
- Are there places that would be confusing to an outside reader or where I’ve assumed non-general knowledge or mind-reading?
Serving the Story:
- Is it predictable? Are there clichés in words, images, ideas, or plot? (Strange Horizons lists cliché plots: http://www.strangehorizons.com/guidelines/fiction-common.shtml; Teresa Nielsen Hayden lists dreadful phrases: http://nielsenhayden.com/makinglight/archives/007425.html.)
- Can I strengthen the story by changing my world-building assumptions? (Charles Stross’ list: http://www.antipope.org/charlie/blog-static/2016/01/a-world-building-puzzler.html.)
- Are the transitions serving the work? Is every scene serving the work? Are the ideas and rhetorical gestures in the right order?
- Is it in the right voice [first person/second person/third person]?
- What does it actually say on the page (as opposed to in my mind)? Is it saying what it wants to say? Is it confused?
- Would saying less be stronger?
- Does it follow its own deepest impulses, rather than my initial idea?
- Do I know more than I did when I started writing it? Did I discover anything?
- Do characters follow their own goals and impulses, or have I forced them to act against their own character to fit the plot? Do they talk, act, and think authentically?
- Is there anything that doesn’t belong?
- Do any digressions serve the work?
- Is it self-satisfied/smug?
- Does it allow strangeness? Is the strangeness it allows accessible?
- Should it go out into the world or is it the seed for another story (or poem)?
1 Also includes questions from a talk given by poet Jane Hirshfield at Vanderbilt University, and from a workshop given by poet Sue MacLeod at the Writers’ Federation of Nova Scotia. Feel welcome to reproduce or excerpt this list, provided attribution and this notice are included.
21 March 2016
Writers! Upper Rubber Boot Books wants your stories for Sunvault: Stories of Solarpunk & Eco-Speculation, the upcoming anthology of speculative fiction edited by Phoebe Wagner and Brontë Wieland. Set for publication in spring 2017, Sunvault will open to submissions following the funding of our Kickstarter project in April.
We want this anthology to reach outside Western and Anglophone traditions of speculative fiction, showcasing the way environment and environmental issues are talked about and perceived in all parts of the world. We encourage and welcome submissions from diverse voices and under-represented populations, including, but not limited to, people of color, members of the LGBTQ community, those with disabilities, and the elderly. Authors of all walks of life should feel encouraged to send us stories celebrating these diverse characters and settings all around us.
What are we looking for?
We want short stories that fall under the scope of speculative fiction (science fiction, fantasy, magical realism, weird fic, etc.). If you’re unsure, submit! We love to be surprised.
The anthology will focus on times of environmental crisis and the people inhabiting these tipping points, fighting to effect change and seek solutions, even if it’s already too late. But these are stories of hope, not just disaster! Turn your lens to those crucial moments in a world’s history when great change can be made by the right people with the right tools. Remember: hope can spark in even the grimmest of situations.
Is there environmental SF already?
There is! Although environmental factors in SF aren’t seen as frequently as other issues, writers are addressing it in revolutionary ways. Here are some examples of SF with primary environmental concerns:
- Margaret Atwood’s MaddAddam trilogy
- Paulo Bacigalupi’s novels (The Windup Girl, The Water Knife)
- George Miller’s Mad Max: Fury Road
- Bong Joon-ho’s Snowpiercer
- Edan Lepucki’s California
- Jeff VanderMeer’s Southern Reach trilogy
The list goes on. Not all of these stories, though, truly fall into the solarpunk category. So what is solarpunk?
What is solarpunk?
Solarpunk follows in the tradition of steampunk and cyberpunk as the embodiment of a counterculture ideology: innovating a way of life that is better for the present and ultimately better for the future. Concepts like clean energy and sustainability are integral to solarpunk as they are outlets for societal reform. The fight for positive change is where -punk comes into play.
There are various communities online that are imagining and building solarpunk as an idea and an aesthetic, but as a literary movement, it is as yet largely undefined. That’s where you come in. Sunvault is the SF community’s opportunity to define the solarpunk genre. We want to see your conceptions and interpretations of the genre. We want to see what solarpunk looks like to you.
Length & Payment:
We’re looking for short stories from 500 to 7500 words. Don’t query about longer pieces. We want to include as many stories as possible in the anthology, so we aren’t able to consider longer works. All authors will be paid 6 cents USD per word upon publication for original fiction.
We are also open for reprint submissions. Reprints are paid a flat rate of $50 for stories under 2000 words and $100 for stories over 2000 words. Please include a complete publication history for reprint submissions.
We will accept submissions from any country.
Translations are welcome. Please include proof that you have the permission of the original author to translate and submit the story, and provide the original author’s contact details as well as your own. Payment will be split equally between the translator and the author. If this is the first publication of the story in English, even if it has appeared in its original language in print, we will pay the rate for original work.
How do I submit?
Submissions will open as soon as our Kickstarter is fully funded and run for approximately a month. Send your story to us at sunvaultanthology[at]gmail.com with the subject like Original Submission: Story name for originals and Reprint Submission: Story name for reprints. Submit translations as original stories (if previously unpublished in English), but be clear that it is a translation in the body of your message. If the format is wrong, your story may end up in our spam folder, so be diligent. We will only read files sent as .doc, .docx, .odt, or .rtf.
Include a cover letter in the body of your email to tell us a bit about who you are. Please include the story’s length, any relevant info we should know about the story, and an author’s bio. Do not describe your story in the cover letter.
We will not be accepting simultaneous submissions. You may only submit one story during the reading period.
We won’t be responding to submissions until the reading period has officially closed, so response times will vary, but expect to hear back from us within 2-3 months. Please don’t query until after 3 months.
1 comment 28 February 2016
Upper Rubber Boot Books is delighted to announce a new title, slated for release 29 August 2017:
Edited by Phoebe Wagner and Brontë Wieland, Sunvault: Stories of Solarpunk and Eco-Speculation is an anthology focusing on the aftereffects of environmental disasters, but with hope—stories of those inhabiting the crucial moments when great change can be made by the right people with the right tools; stories of people living during tipping points, and the spaces before and after them; and stories of those who fought to effect change and seek solutions, even if it was too late.
Discuss this book at Goodreads.
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14 February 2016