Monday, March 4, 2013

AWP [ AND OTHER NEWS OF AMAZING THINGS ]

As usual, the week of AWP is like swinging across dark rooftops in a Mission Impossible-meets-Girls-meets-corporate-conference action film. There's a lot to take in, prepare for, promote, and ultimately drink to. The blessing of it all is that AWP provides a concrete deadline in which presses can sprint towards. And sprinting definitely what we're doing. This is a moment for all of us to come together in a chaotic moshpit of poetry and small-press glory.

On this end, I'm sitting in Brooklyn right now with my cat, Russell, on my lap, having a glass of gin. I just picked up our new Monk Books chapbook, by M.A. Vizsolyi, at the printers, and cabbed it home, talking on the phone with poet and jewelry maker, Paige Taggart, about all we have to do before leaving for Boston (make sure to find her if you're in Boston and buy her jewelry...). I wanted to write a post about a few outlandishly important things to keep in mind this week, whether you're coming to AWP or not. I'm going to make a list, which is in no particular order.


1. MONK BOOKS

You may not know this, but I am the co-editor and founder of a small press that makes limited edition poetry and art chapbooks, run now by me and my fiancé (!!!), Ben Pease. It was started by me and the wonderful poet, Adam Fitzgerald, (whose first fill-length book of poetry "The Late Parade" will be out just in time for AWP, which is brilliant and beautiful) and it's called Monk Books. Ben has re-vamped the website, and made it easier to purchase our books.  Our newest title that I've just picked up, is by a fellow MFA student of mine at NYU, who is also a dear friend, and one of my favorite poets, hands down: M.A. Vizolyi. I can't recommend this book enough. His poems are incredible. Please go to the website and check it out and buy it!
We also have Tom Healy's book available for pre-order!! Michael will be reading for us as AWP, in a reading co-hosted by WONDER. Which brings us to the next item....


2. WONDER


Probably one of the most radical poetry publishers, WONDER (a brain child of Ben Fama and Andrew Durbin), experiments with poetry, social media, pamphlets, ephemera, and visual art. Their first collection, Mall Witch, poetry by Ben Fama (although it's not quite that simple, as it was also made collaboratively by Paul Legault, Andrew Durbin, and designer Joseph Kaplan) is an innovative, bold presentation of poetry and [somewhat campy] computer art and collage.

Take your time with this book, that's what it demands. And that's what Wonder's aesthetic demands. It's an objet d'art. One that needs a different kind of approach. Keep a close eye on these minds.






AWP / MONK BOOKS AND WONDER READING
Friday March 8th, Emmanuel Church in downtown Boston
A 15 minute walk from the AWP convention center!


Readers:

Ana Božičević
Andrew Durbin
Ben Fama
Tom Healy
Lucy Ives
Dorothea Lasky
Bianca Stone
M.A. Vizsolyi
Rebecca Wolff


Hosted by Ben Pease


3. Birds LLC

They've done it again!! Another fabulous book has been produced. This time it's Sampson Starkweather himself! The First Four Books, is literally four books. I was lucky enough to do the "cover" for one of the books inside. Each one has a different cover, within the book. Sampson's poems are beautiful and unique, and each book is such a joy to read. Be sure to come to their reading as well:

BIRDS, LLC, FACTORY HOLLOW, IMMACULATE DISCIPLES, ROSE METAL PRESS, SIXTH FINCH, and WONDER present: A night of Beer, Broadsides, and Poetry 








Readers:
BIRDS, LLC

Ana Božičević
Sampson Starkweather
Bianca Stone

FACTORY HOLLOW
Luke Bloomfield
Heather Christle
Alex Phillips

IMMACULATE DISCIPLES
Marisa Crawford

ROSE METAL PRESS
B.J. Best

SIXTH FINCH
Ryan Ridge
Gale Marie Thompson

WONDER
Jenny Zhang
Cecilia K. Corrigan

& VISUAL ARTISTS
Aimee Belanger
Mike Dacey
Pat Falco
Jeremiah Gould
Vanessa Irzyk
Jay LaCouture
Gregory Maxim
James Weinberg

*Broadsides by Rye House Press in collaboration with the Rope-a-Dope Collaborative

**FREE Beer by Narragansett

3/7, 8pm, The Distillery, 516 East Second Street in South Boston

4. Poems on Bomblog!!

Here!

I have four poems and an art piece on Bomblog this week. I'm so happy to have these particular poems because they are all in my book Someone Else's Wedding Vows, which will be published by Tin House and Octopus Books (collaboratively) next year (in time for AWP ;) And you'll probably notice it's also the cover of my poetry comic, which will be available at Factory Hollow Press' table at AWP.