by Kevin Sampsell, November 30, 2005 5:56 PM
Here at the City of Books, I used to print up a little small press newsletter and review sheet called Umbrella. I stopped doing it after eight issues. It was a good tool for telling people about small press stuff but you know what ??? blogs are probably better. I hope to post occasional news, reviews, interviews, and more. Many of the people and books I write about might be "lesser-known" but deserve a larger audience. And sometimes I will write about people published by the bigger houses. Some news:
- After five years on Canadian small press Coach House, Jonathan Goldstein's awesome Lenny Bruce Is Dead is finally getting published in the states. Counterpoint will publish it in paperback in March 2006. Goldstein is mostly known as a producer for This American Life (making his Canadian fame a little funny). His book is a hilarious hodge-podge of horny Jewish boy folly, with a sweet aftertaste.
- Portland writer Mike Daily has written and produced a song made entirely of all the titles from the Fiction Collective catalog! Fiction Collective (or FC2 as it is now known) has been around since 1974 and Daily is a big fan of their work (and a connoisseur of experimental fiction in general).
- One of the strange things about the Oregon Book Awards list this year was the short fiction category only had two finalists ??? and they couldn't be any more different. Barry Lopez's Resistance was published by Vintage and contained some heavy-hitting, politically-inspired stories while David Pinson's A Moment to Organize My Face was published by a tiny press and features short, weird, minimalist fiction that stuns and entertains. Secretly, I was hoping Pinson would win (even though the cover of his book is terrible). But of course, the universe being as it is ??? Lopez (and Vintage) won the honor.