Thursday, December 13, 2012

New Book With Noctuary Press


Noctuary Press is a fabulous new press founded by
poet and scholar Kristina Marie Darling.
http://noctuarypress.com/
From the website, their mission:
Noctuary Press is a small independent press that focuses on female writers working with cross-genre prose forms (such as flash fiction, prose poetry, footnoted texts, etc.).  All too often, writing that is easily classifiable as “poetry,” “prose,” or “nonfiction” is privileged over exciting literary work that is not so easily categorized.  Noctuary Press seeks to create a public space for women writers working across literary genres.  We publish writing that does not simply challenge the notion of genre, but engages it in a meaningful way, assessing both the artistic possibilities and the dangers inherent in maintaining genre categories.
With that in mind, Noctuary Press strives to open up a dialogue among writers, reviewers, and readers about what constitutes a literary genre, the purpose of genre categories, and, perhaps most importantly, the politics of genre categories in the literary community.  We focus on female writers because these efforts to define, label, and categorize literary texts often reflect larger power structures in the literary community and in the academy.  In most cases, only those texts that fit the established genre categories are perceived as “legitimate.”  Noctuary Press hopes to create a space where efforts to question, engage, and revise existing notions of genre are considered not only legitimate, but exciting, rewarding, and worthwhile endeavors.


I'm thrilled that Noctuary Press has chosen my manuscript
F IN to be their first book! F IN will be published in Feb. 2013
with a cover by Holly Andres, whose photographs you
can admire right here: http://hollyandres.com/

F IN has a complicated history. It was originally a novella titled
Willful Machine. It was intended as a ghost story, a mystery,
my attempt to subvert the conventions and tidy plot structure
of those forms. I wanted to appropriate those genres and tell
the story of the (ubiquitous) dead girl from the perspective
of a girl who makes the dead girl up. I was tired of watching
mainstream writers make money from dismembered female bodies,
and wanted to give those bodies agency. Instead I wrote
a book I wasn't happy with, and ultimately pulled the book
a few weeks before publication. Then I picked at it, trying to revise
by making it longer. Then I made it shorter. Then I whited out
the entire manuscript. After erasing the entire manuscript I allowed
a few words back in. Hey you -- you can come in. But you, stay out.
I got to be a bouncer at the club I'd constructed. F IN is an erasure
of Willful Machine. I like it much better than the original manuscript.
I did have moments of wanting to leave the manuscript
blank, all the words hidden in white font. The whole process
took a lot of time and focus and was incredibly pleasurably.
I continue to believe that compression is vital, that less is more,
that the goal must be to use as few words as possible. This is my
obstruction. I feel it within me very fiercely -- not for other writers,
simply for myself. There's an urgency to it. When I write something
I just want to erase it, because the words cancel out the idea
or emotion. If I were a choreographer I'd be obsessed with stillness,
like the moment in Balanchine's Serenade where the women
stand vibrating before suddenly snapping their feet into first:
http://www.nycballet.com/Ballets/S/Serenade.aspx
Paul Kolnik/New York City Ballet







Noctuary Press is also publishing books by two
of my very very very favorite poets, Kristy Bowen and Eva Heisler.
I'm so excited about their books and this new publishing
venture! More information about Kristy and Eva here:

Kristy Bowen Author PhotoA writer and visual artist, Kristy Bowen is the author of several book, chapbook, and zine projects, including the forthcoming beautiul, sinister(Maverick Duck Press, 2013) and girl show (Black Lawrence, 2013). She lives in Chicago where she runs dancing girl press & studio, devoted to paper-oriented arts and publishing work by women writers/artists.


Eva Heisler Author PhotoEva Heisler is a U.S. poet and art critic based near Heidelberg, Germany. Her poems have been widely published in journals includingCrazyhorse, The Nation, and Poetry Northwest. Honors include The Nation’s “Discovery” Award and the Poetry Society of America’s Emily Dickinson Award. A Fulbright grant brought her to Iceland in 1997 where she lived for nine years, researching Icelandic art with a focus on conceptual practices. Her essays on Icelandic contemporary art have been published in academic journals, art magazines, and museum catalogs. Recent publications include an art historical examination of Icelandic conceptualism for the five-volume History of Icelandic Art, published by the National Gallery of Iceland in 2011, and the chapter “Doubled Bodies and Live Loops: On Ragnar Kjartansson’s Mediatized Performances” in Bastard or Playmate? Adapting Theatre, Mutating Media and the Contemporary Performing Arts, published by the University of Amsterdam Press in 2012. Heisler’s collection of poems Reading Emily Dickinson in Icelandic (Kore Press, 2012)explores how language shapes perception and was inspired by her nine years in Iceland, a time in which the romance and astonishments of a foreign land were challenged by the difficulties of earning a living as a foreigner.