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DIY Poetry Publishing Cooperative

August 04, 2006

Otoliths 2

From editor/publisher Mark Young:
The second issue of Otoliths has just gone live.

It contains work by Karl Young, Juhana Vähänen (translated by Karri Kokko), Martin Edmond, Rochelle Ratner, Louise Landes Levi, Cath Vidler, Michael Farrell, Christian Jensen, Ira Joel Haber, Bruce Covey, Jill Jones, Allen Bramhall, Derek Motion, Caleb Puckett, Sandra Simonds (a mini-chap, The Tar Pit Diatoms), Vernon Frazer, Pat Nolan, Donald Illich, J.D. Nelson, harry k stammer, Steve Tills, David Meltzer, Tom Beckett, Thomas Fink, Crag Hill, Ira Cohen, Carol Jenkins, Miia Toivio, John M. Bennett, Michael Rothenberg, Geof Huth, David-Baptiste Chirot, Aki Salmela, Sandy McIntosh, Michelle Greenblatt, Janne Nummela, Tom Hibbard, Marko J. Niemi, Phil Primeau, Kevin Opstedal, Olli Sinivaara, Nico Vassilakis & John M. Bennett, Michael McClure, Pam Brown, Leevi Lehto & Eileen Tabios.

& a reminder that the print-on-demand editions of Otoliths issue one and its associated chapbooks from Jean Vengua and from Ray Craig are also available from Lulu.com.

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Unprotected Texts by Tom Beckett

Meritage Press
Fall 2006

From editor/publisher Eileen Tabios:

Meritage Press is pleased to announce the release of Tom Beckett's long overdue and much anticipated first poetry book. Unprotected Texts encompasses work from nearly three decades. To celebrate this historic release, Meritage Press is pleased to offer a PRE-RELEASE SPECIAL. Through September 30, 2006, you can acquire this book direct from the publisher for $14.00, a 30% discount, as well as receive free shipping/handling for orders sent to U.S. addresses. Send check/money order made out to Meritage Press to:

Eileen Tabios
Meritage Press
256 North Fork Crystal Springs Road
St. Helena, CA 94574
Zombies and Wittgenstein bracket a series of autonomous zones populated by the Book, Harry Partch, 100 Questions, shadows, holograms, the Subject, the author himself, and numerous pronouns. These Unprotected Texts flood the tones of speech wrenched from the bent notes of a life lived looking for a connection to 'the conversation' that takes place among musics of meaning. 'Is this speech balloon a rubber?' Sex and text are synonymous here.


"There is a powerfully osmotic draw to this welcome volume of selected poems, spanning nearly thirty years of work and concluding with a stimulating interview of the author by Tom Fink and Crag Hill. That this book is overdue results in a level of concentration that intensifies the experience of reading. The poetry itself, the intellect and personality that exude from it, reveal a mind and heart that bring to the fore the infinite variety of life in the late 20th and early 21st Centuries. References to composer and musical theorist Harry Partch seem apt, as Beckett's Unprotected Texts reveal intervals in sound, discovering heretofore undiscovered instruments.

"There is Beckett as designer who 'underpaints. Beckett as builder: 'Stanzas are rooms in Italian.' Beckett as political and social observer: 'Is the president a hologram?' 'Do fingerprints have babies?' Beckett as aesthetic investigator: 'At some point I turned out to be my method.' 'Closure affects circumference.' Beckett as honest individual/ articulate creator: 'It's a boy and it's a girl.' 'Often I am permitted to do absolutely nothing that I want to do.'" --Sheila E. Murphy

"For three decades now, Tom Beckett has been writing the most hard-headed, clear-eyed, unsentimental poetry in America. He has the rigor of a master & the mind of a first-rate detective. Long before the internet made it relatively easier for a poet to work from somewhere other than one of the two or three major literary centers, Beckett was writing poems from deep inside Ohio that ring as true--and as clearly--now as when they were first written." --Ron Silliman

Well known for editing The Difficulties (1980-1990), a now legendary critical journal, Tom Beckett has long been associated with the Language Poets. His poem "The Picture Window" (included in this volume) was published in Ron Silliman's landmark anthology In the American Tree. More recently, he has become a popular figure in the world of blogs. Unprotected Texts comprises work taken in whole or part from broadsides, chapbooks, journals, online and other publications. It is his first, much anticipated, full-length book. He lives in Kent, Ohio.

Get those checkbooks out, people.


August 03, 2006

Organic Furniture Cellar by Jessica Smith now available

Jessica Smith announces the release of her debut book Organic Furniture Cellar from her own Outside Voices press.

Organic Furniture Cellar by Jessica Smith
Outside Voices Press
August 2006
96 pp.
"These poetic constellations are places to inhabit and shifting possibilities for meaning. Jessica Smith rounds every corner with another corner. Organic Furniture Cellar is the future in a now." --Charles Bernstein

"Jessica Smith's Organic Furniture Cellar takes on big issues, such as how to write about the place where you live with all its distractions, beauties, and limitations intact. And she writes out of these questions a beautifully fragmented series of page aware poems. A stunning and necessary first book." --Juliana Spahr

"Jessica Smith refuses to write like lyric poets, who merely rearrange the furniture of language in their rooms; instead, she makes her language skid 'every which way' like an office chair kicked across a parquet floor." --Christian Bök

Jessica's approach to DIY publishing combines the expertise of advisors (her MS was edited by several mentor poets), hands-on involvment in design and production, art-book quality printing and binding (through McNaughton & Gunn), and DIY distribution via her website, plus a boost from SPD & Bootstrap Productions. The book is the first printed release from Outside Voices, which has also put out collaborative e-books by Charles Bernstein & Susan Leftwich, and Jim Leftwich & Jukka-Pekka Kervinen, and has several other projects in the works.

I've swapped for my copy . . . so more on this one soon!

Excerpts, reviews, & ordering info can be found here.


Pseudophakia by Julie Carter

Julie Carter (of Weirdness Evaluation Engine & MiPoesias's Goodnight Show) has just released her DIY book Pseudophakia.
"Julie Carter's work would be too dark if not for all those flashes of brilliance. Death and decay are recurring themes. You could call her a formalist, as most of her poems are written in iambic pentameter, and many are sonnets, but her poems aren't about that, and often use rhyme and meter so subtly that you hardly notice them. Her aim, it seems to me, is to change the way you see things." --Rose Kelleher

Pseudophakia by Julie Carter
6 x 9
perfect-bound paperback
81 pages
$7.00 or less than a buck as a PDF

Available via Lulu.com here.


Introducing: Melancholia's Tremulous Dreadlocks

From editor/publisher Andrew Lundwall:
Melancholia's Tremulous Dreadlocks is an ever-evolving entity . . . a journal of poetry . . . fiction . . . and curious bits. The first ever issue of Melancholia's Tremulous Dreadlocks is online now . . . featuring new poems by mIEKAL aND, John M. Bennett, Marcia Arrieta, Petra Backonja, Anny Ballardini, Bob Marcacci, Robert Chrysler, kari edwards, Alex Gildzen, Johannes Goransson, Richard Denner, Jeff Harrison, Chris Toll, Eileen Tabios, & Lina Ramona Vitkauskas. Cover art by Scott Church.

Check it out.

August 02, 2006

The new issue of How2 . . .

. . . features a small press publishing forum.

The questions:
* From forming editorial collectives to self-publishing, as poet-publishers and reader-writers, what models do we have to offer, imagine, devise (or how might existing publishing and distribution models potentially be mediated) as we endeavor to build innovative publishing models that defend and invent the conditions under and within which our writing exists, is produced and distributed?

* Small press publishing of innovative poetries provides a distinct subaltern model to existing modes of literary production and their means of distribution. How might an editorial poetics of publishing that includes (or exists exclusively as) gift economy alter, challenge and create economic and aesthetic resistance or subversion? Independent publishers, specifically those committed to avant-garde writing and its strategies, engage modes of representation that often are under specific pressures. What happens when presses commit to publishing chapbooks, either exclusively or in part? Where do chapbooks fall within this rubric of small press publishing, particularly as few bookstores or distributors are willing to carry them?

* Many independent publishers are committed to an editorial practice that challenges competition and the contest system now common to many university, non- and not-for-profit presses, especially in the United States. In what ways might contest-driven / competition models blunt critical inquiry or limit the possibilities of poetry itself? Communities tend to coalesce for a variety of reasons; how might we describe the communities that editors, publishers, distributors, poets and readers of independent presses are in the process of participating in &/or inventing?

Some outtakes:
"Working on Proliferation pushed me to articulate and commit to my opinions about writing in a way that being a workshop participant or literature student never had. It gave me a sense of confidence and focus. I finally started to understand that I was not asking permission to join the world of writers, I was a part of it. And it was up to me to decide what to do with that." --Mary Burger

"Many cultural conservatives--some who are otherwise liberal in their thinking--decry that there are "too many books," by which they mean, "too many to judge." From our point of view, the opportunities and realities of POD publishing suggest a decentering of critical authority, a comment on the instability of (or deliberate destabilizing of) canonicity in the age of the privatization of the public sphere. However, controlling the means of production is one thing; creating new channels of distribution, and making better use of old ones, is another." --Bill Marsh

"Why is it, I wondered, that The Book retains such primacy in avant garde poetic communities? These are thinkers who question everything about societal values, about the acts of reading and writing, about language itself. These are people who pioneered the DIY model of printing (I think of Diane DiPrima and Amiri Baraka's Floating Bear Press) and online publishing (UBU web). Nonetheless, in my experience, experimental poets enforce amongst themselves the status of The Book as much as any other group of writers." --Allison Cobb

Ack! Eek! & then Kristen Gallagher says "I've noticed there are fewer and fewer presses these days."

Luckily that's *not* true. & the lack of cash-upfront she laments? Why not POD?

Crossposted from the other blog.

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