Sunday, January 29, 2012

Best of the Small Press 2011: Day 11

Today's small press recommendations come from writer Martha King. Martha has had a long history in the small press: She is the author of numerous books of both prose and poetry on micro-presses like Stop Press, 2 + 2 Press, and Zelot Press; she has worked over many years as an editor (including a former dayjob at Poets & Writers); and she currently co-hosts the Prose Pros reading series in New York. Born in the old South in the 1930s, her bohemian life started with a short stint at Black Mountain College in the 1950s and kept going from there. She's been a part of the New York arts scene since the 1950s and has been writing steadily since the 1970s. From 1983-93 she edited the poetry zine Giants Play Well in the Drizzle and in the mid-90s she published a series called the Northern Lights Poetry Chaplets. I'm looking forward to reading her book of short stories, North & South, about which fiction author Lucia Berlin said, "I like especially how King can nail down class in the USA--from the South to the New York art world."

If you've been following my Best of the Small Press 2011, you know that I have been posting indie press picks mainly from writers who visited Pittsburgh in 2011. Martha has never visited Pittsburgh, but some of her books have, via her most recent publisher, the innovative Spuyten Duyvil. Spuyten Duyvil (Brooklyn) was one of numerous indie publishers who came to Pittsburgh for the annual SPF: Small Press Festival in recent years. Since 2009, SPF has featured literary presses, letterpress publishers, and indie comix from Pittsburgh as well as Detroit, Buffalo, Nashville, Cleveland, New York, Massachusetts, and more. Find them here:


1. Learning to Draw/A History, Basil King (Skylight Press)
2. So Late into the Night, Elinor Nauen (Rain Mountain Press)
3. To be Read in the Dark, Maxine Chernoff (Omnidawn Press)

Recommended by Martha King
Author of North & South (Spuyten Duyvil)

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