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Alchemy for Cells: Recommended by SPD!

By | Reviews

Alchemy for Cells & Other Beasts is a Staff Pick this month, meaning you can get it for 20% if you order from them, here: SPD Staff Picks.

Books about anxiety are too often deemed feminine and interior—too personally specific. But in the refractive kaleidoscope of ALCHEMY FOR CELLS & OTHER BEASTS, anxiety becomes an externalised and colorful weapon, one encompassing not just the landscape of the self, but the universe as it affects the self, the tales of other selves around the self. From geologic time to climate change, individual anxiety spreads virally throughout the book, populating its readers with the troubling accoutrements of human existence and its oft negative impacts — “so mammal / so leathery like our sin / the one I cover over my organs / like a filmy curtain.” Accompanied by misleadingly succulent artwork by Carrie DeBacker, ALCHEMY FOR CELLS & OTHER BEASTS is a journey at turns mystical and frightening, guilt-inducing and comforting, muddling humanity’s oppressive force with its animal instincts, all without being self-righteous or accusatory. We exist, it seems to say, and we have an impact. And what that is can be beautiful or frightening — it’s up to us. —Trisha Low

Aaron Shurin: A Lovely Personal Review

By | Other Presses & Other Rooms, Reviews

Aaron Shurin Full Stop ReviewWhile, the mention of “Flowers & Sky: Two Talks” is really just an aside for a longer review of Aaron’s previous book, “The Skin of Meaning”, I thought this review/conversation/tribute is quite lovely.

“…it’s his ability to create beauty, to literally invoke it, that has most captivated me. He is a Romantic Poet in an era eviscerated of romance.”

Yep. And a hero to many for his embrace of it and all the swoon.


First ERB Emerging Filmmaker Award: A Film by Rebecca Starkey

By | Film

We could not be more honored to share our first “Emerging Visions Film” by Rebecca Starkey! She took on an interpretation of our forthcoming “Alchemy for Cells & Other Beasts” by Maya Zeller and Carrie DeBacker.

This award, given to a Washington State female or female-identified filmmaker or digital artist, is meant to encourage the growth and development of women artists and technicians traditionally underrepresented in the film and digital industry. We will be posting our 2018 submission guidelines for next year’s award next week.

Our First Review! (and it’s for Aaron Shurin)

By | Reviews

We were delight to see our first review and, more so, since it is a good one by Daniel Casey on Heavy Feather Review.

Here’s a stab at an excerpt:

Intensely interrogative… Shurin has created a body of work sparked by the low and inspired by the high… always spiraling more and more poetic thought… Once he has given us his flowers of the field talk, Shurin raises his head skyward. It is a wonderfully balanced maneuver, giving us a parallel of particular with universal… Shurin keeps his focus on the revelations in each governing image… At once literary criticism and memoir, “Flowers & Sky” gives cutting insight into the poetic process illuminating for readers and writers alike.


Reluctant Author, Now Marketing

By | Learning How to Be a Publisher

I’ve heard stories of the “platform”, seen some marketing questionnaires that might be included with a book contract (or even before a contract is given). Truth is, I can see why publishers are doing these things now: there’s almost no budget for marketing and for poetry, a lot of books get sold through connections…aka, friends!

So it is with special relish (and a bit of joking), that we are pleased to share that one of our authors now has an author website and twitter handle (though I promised she did not have to actually tweet!).

Check out Melinda Mueller’s new site to learn about all of her books and if you feel like tweeting her, find her at @melinda_mueller.

And yes, on my list for winter project is designing an “Author Intake” form. Really.

First Lit Press Mention…

By | Thoughts

Now we were excited that our first “review” was in a school paper because that is awesome… but it is a delight to also get our first mention in a dedicated lit site.  Thanks to Denise Hill at New Pages for finding our combination of including audio with all of our books an interesting approach. I always learn something new about a poem when I hear an author read it and it is our hope that by including audio with our books, you will too! Read the full blurb here.

On our 2017 books, you’ll find a simple password in the back of the book, which you can enter on our site to access the download file. For our early books, you can download those without a password.  Take a listen here.

You can also listen to samples on our SoundCloud page (though rumor is they are running out of money and may close down soon!). LISTEN TO SOUNDCLOUD.

Rebecca Starkey Receives Emerging Visions Filmmaker Award

By | Books, Film

Rebecca Starkey FilmmakerWe are very pleased to announce the receipient of our first Emerging Visions Filmmaker Award is Rebecca Starkey.

Rebecca Starkey is an aspiring cinematographer and will be graduating in June from the film program at Central Washington University. Rebecca was recently awarded first place in the student narrative film category in the Broadcast Education Association’s festival of media arts for her short film Todd’s Vlog. When she is not behind the camera Rebecca can usually be found rock climbing or painting.

Rebecca will be working on a short film with Spokane poet, Maya Jewell Zeller and Seattle artist, Carrie DeBacker for their forthcoming (September 2017) collaboration, Alchemy for Cells and Other Beasts.

Our Emerging Visions Filmmaking Award is meant to encourage the growth and development of women artists and technicians traditionally underrepresented in the film and digital industry. This award comes with a $500 stipend. With this award, we seek to foster connections between these emerging creators and the artist and writers working on our books in ways that build confidence, skills and provide a realistic glimpse in how working artists create and collaborate (and have day jobs).

We are thrilled to welcome Rebecca to our team of poets, artists and musicians and look forward to sharing her work this fall. We would also like to thank the many women who applied and sent us clips and ideas to consider. We’ll be posting information a bit earlier (as in later this fall) for our 2018 Emerging Visions Award… which will focus next year on translation. Keep up-to-date on that by following us on Facebook.