Keeping the word alive: supporting small presses during covid-19
It is very hard to overstate the importance of small, independent presses in our current literary scene – they are most poets’ first home, and play host to a diverse range of voices that might be overlooked by mainstream publishers. However, most presses operate on razor thin margins, relying on consistent sales to keep the lights on. With canceled shows and conferences already decreasing sales, it is vital to continue supporting these organizations and purchasing from their catalogs. If you have the means, we ask that you check out these presses and consider buying some books – you’ll get the joy of new, unexpected words, and will be helping a small business while you’re at it.
Aforementioned is an award-winning press publishing fiction, essays, and poems that combine the cerebral with the visceral—in other words, they support literature that makes readers think and feel. Their books have been praised by Esquire, NewPages, Kirkus Reviews, and Publishers Weekly, and their titles have received honors and awards from The Massachusetts Center for the Book and The New England Poetry Club.
Founded in 2016 by poet Alexandra Woolner, and playwright Jason Montgomery, Attack Bear Press is a clearing house for all things art. Located in Easthampton, Massachusetts, Attack Bear Press works with local artists and writers on collaborative, creative projects. No ursidae were harmed in the creation of this website.
Founded in 2005 with the mission of putting literature and art on the streets, Broadsided publishes monthly visual-literary collaborations as free posters for anyone to download and print. Special features punctuate the monthly publications.
Broadsided also recently created a “Solace” folio of poems for troubling times. You can view the full project here.
Central Square Press, LLC, is a small, independent, literary press that publishes thought-provoking and high quality poetry. They publish manuscripts that reflect a commitment to social justice in regards to African-American, Caribbean and Caribbean-American communities.
Cervena Barva Press was founded in April of 2005. The press solicits poetry, fiction, and plays from various writers around the world, and holds open contests regularly for its chapbooks, postcards, broadsides and full-length books. They publish writers who have a strong voice and who take risks with language.
Game Over Books is a small publisher run collaboratively by a group of nerdy artists. Their goal is to amplify diverse voices in writing and bring high-quality publications to all people.
Donate to the Game Over Author Fund, set up to compensate their authors for canceled shows, here.
Greying Ghost was started in March of 2007 by Carl Annarummo in a steamy attic apartment just outside of Boston, Massachusetts. Since its inception the press has released nearly 150 chapbooks, pamphlets and ephemera; each painstakingly printed, assembled, and distributed by hand, in house.
Grid Books is a publisher of poetry and other editions foregrounding creative work that springs from the margins.
They seek a variety of perspectives expressed in creative and collaborative formats, including poetry, scholarly editions, and projects encompassing oral history.
Human Error Publishing is an independent publishing company, dedicated to developing and showcasing artists of all types.
Founded in 1998, Ibbetson Street Press publishes poetry & nonfiction books, as well as a literary magazine.
Since 1997, Perugia Press has been publishing first and second books of poetry by women. They publish one book a year, the winner of the Perugia Press Prize. Their mission is to help right gender inequity in publishing by launching women’s voices into the world, one excellent book at a time.
Founded in 2006, Rose Metal Press is a not-for-profit publisher specializing in the publication of flash fiction and nonfiction; prose poetry; novels-in-verse or book-length linked narrative poems; novellas-in-flash; lyric essays; text and image works; and other literary works that move beyond the traditional genres of poetry, fiction, and essay to find new forms of expression.
Slate Roof Press is a member-run press established in 2004 and committed to publishing Massachusetts and regional poets as well as poetry nationwide in alternate years of their chapbook contest. They publish limited edition, art-quality chapbooks, which are designed by the poets and printed by member and master printer Ed Rayher. They pay careful attention to typography, paper choice, binding, and cover art.
Slope Editions was created by Ethan Paquin and Christopher Janke in 2001 with the same goal in mind as the online literary journal Slope – to present readers with a fine and eclectic array of poetry being written in English today. Each year, they release one to two well-chosen and stylistically diverse softcover, perfect-bound books and chapbooks that defy convention and categorization.
Zephyr Press, founded in 1980, is an award-winning non-profit independent press whose titles and literary events foster a deeper understanding of cultures and languages from around the world. They focus on contemporary poetry and prose in translation from Russia, Eastern Europe and Asia, but also publish literature from other languages and the U.S., and reprint books of literary and historical value that have long been out of print. They organize bilingual readings, educational workshops and other cross-cultural exchanges in the U.S. and abroad.