We’re in Fairhope, Alabama, for the Gulf Coast Association of Creative Writing Teachers 2015 Conference. (Say that three times fast.) I’m not a teacher and what I write is only modestly creative, but my saddle stapler and I . . . we contribute, dammit! So, yeah, as soon as this Wisconsin/North Carolina game is over, I’m going to go assemble some more chapbooks on the bar in the kitchen while drinking cider and listening to whatever music shoots out of my iPhone.
This conference was supposed to be casual and relaxed, but I’ll be playing a major supporting role. Come say hi if you’re here in Southern Alabama.
In a couple weeks, it’s AWP, where I’ll be going for my first time ever. Not “we” for that one, as it will be a brief introduction . . . taking advantage of the Saturday, one-day-pass experiment they’re offering. Besides stopping by to see all our friends at the book fair, I’m going to catch a reading or two. It’ll be a time.
And maybe if AWP ever comes back to the Southeast, “we’ll” do it for real.cont.
The first chapbook (and winning chapbook) of the 2014/2015 “season” is Candice Wuehle’s EARTH * AIR * FIRE *WATER * ÆTHER. We knew right away it was going to be a contender with a fluidity that seems so easy and natural. And at the same time, there’s a real weight, a presence. It’s at once adventurous and cohesive . . . a poetic masterwork.
“I open up my laptop
and write against
the browser, I keep shopping. I open to
The Guardian, to Forever 21, to Netflix. I
buy nothing most days but I do
some days. I’m here. I think of if there is anywhere my body
my whole thing
can’t go now, I think of the fire
wall, I think of you.”
It’s available now on the TITLES page.
This is gonna be a great season.cont.
The schedule is continuing to expand. In fact, I think we now have projects planned into 2016. Which isn’t something we usually strive for, but we’ve encountered so many great chapbooks that need to be “out there.”
In the meantime, our 2014/2015 Open Reading “winner” Candice Wuehle’s chapbook EARTH*AIR*FIRE*WATER*ÆTHER will be out in, like, a week. (I’d better get to work.)
More on the schedule with the March update!cont.
The 2014/2015 open reading period was our most successful (and, unexpectedly, most attended) yet. I wasn’t pre-organizing/gathering the submissions as they came in, choosing instead to let them pile up and organize as the deadline passed. (Surprise!) There were a lot of strong submissions this year. We pared the pile of chapbook submissions to eight . . . then realized we missed one and it was actually nine. (Surprise!)
The plan was to aim for three or four (more than a year ago), and we ultimately chose four. As I was going through the finalists, I was consciously trying to pick a good mix . . . although the “season” will, I think, be a little more experimental/adventurous than we’ve done in the past.
The “winning” chapbook was EARTH*AIR*FIRE*WATER*ÆTHER by Candice Wuehle, and we’ll be starting the “season” with that one in February. The rest of the chapbooks will follow, one every couple/few months, through the Spring and Summer. (We have to allow room for other special projects brewing.)
Oh! The other chapbooks. We’ll also be featuring a collaborative chap by Margaret Bashaar and Lauren Eggert-Crowe (Spring) and a limited-edition chapbook by Ashley D’Arcy (Summer). This year, for whatever reason, we did not exclude previous GBP chapbook authors from being considered (frankly, I’d rather publish great poetry than ALWAYS look for new voices), which is how it came that we’re going to be publishing another work from Mike Sikkema.
We’ll have more on the schedule soon. Until then, look for a new GBP chapbook in February!