Editor’s Desk – Week of October 9, 2015

October 9, 2015

Dear Intrepid Readers,

OMG LITQUAKE IS UPON US AGAIN!

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   It’s hard to believe, because it feels like it was just yesterday that we wrapped Litquake 2014. This time last year, we were anxiously awaiting the release of our 2nd issue of NonBinary Review, Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, and still navigating the waters of being a new independent press in a literary landscape geared towards Big 5 publishers and “unit” over “art” as the measure of success. We feel pretty great about where we stand just a short year later. We released our 6th issue of NonBinary Review, 1001 Arabian Nights, and the feedback on this issue has been overwhelmingly positive. To follow the success of NBR #5 (The King in Yellow), we opted for an issue that emphasized poetry to accentuate the lyric prose of the original text. As editors who consider our press to be feminist in nature, we were also delighted to see submissions that took on the problematic aspects of the stories and re-invented the characters in a modern, egalitarian way that centered the narrative on the cleverness of Scheherazade over the marginalization of her gender. If you haven’t already downloaded the new issue, why don’t you pop on over to the iTunes store and install the app on your iPhone or iPad—it’s absolutely free, and will give you all six issues of NBR to enjoy as we continue curating the next issue, The Woman in White by Wilkie Collins. We’re still open for Woman in White submissions through the end of the month, so if you’ve been crafting your whodunit or noir crossover, make sure you’ve bookmarked our submissions page.

Yeah, we know you're excited for 1001 Arabian Nights. We are, too!
Yeah, we know you’re excited for 1001 Arabian Nights. We are, too!

…but back to Litquake. This year, we’re giving back to the event in a whole different way. Last year, we donated our time as volunteers, which is a great way to get involved and make local connections with like-minded, literary people. This year, we’re donating our expertise—Editor-in-Chief Lise Quintana is part of the Hot Off the Press: The Latest From the Publishing Pros panel event at the Foundation Center in San Francisco. Lise joins fellow industry professionals April Eberhardt, Brenda Knight, Mark Tauber and Ted Weinstein to discuss new trends in the publishing industry, as well as providing useful, realistic advice for authors hoping to break into the world of publishing, and a forum for publishers to catch up on industry changes and glean insight into how other presses run their operations. The event is completely free to attend, but seating is limited and going fast as the date approaches— reserve your seat, mark your calendars for Monday, October 12 at 5:00 p.m. and make sure you don’t miss this one! To learn more about the panel, check out the YouTube teaser!

   Speaking of panels, this week, I had the pleasure of guest lecturing at Lowell High School in San Francisco, as part of a panel on editing and publication with Alexandra Naughton of Be About It Press and J.K. Fowler of Nomadic Press. As a person whose life was changed by my own high school’s literary magazine, it was incredibly rewarding to go into a high school 20 years later, armed with some real-life advice, and the tips I’ve gained from my years as a working writer and my various capacities working in different literary magazines over the past decade. In a scholastic climate where the arts are quickly disappearing from the academic curriculum, the ways we can contribute our time and knowledge and share with students who are just beginning to learn their way around writing, become more and more valuable.

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   One last note about Litquake before we sign off this week—Litquake officially caps off the week of events, panels, readings and literary shenanigans with Litcrawl. On Saturday, October 17, the Mission District of San Francisco will come alive with writers, sharing their work in a blitz of readings that run from 6 p.m. straight on till midnight! Zoetic Press is happy to be hosting an event during Phase 1 of Litcrawl—so don’t worry, you’ll have plenty of time to catch a whole slew of readings after our Mythmaking reading at Double Dutch. We’ll be hearing sets from our Bay Area authors, including MOTHSlam champ Daniel Ari, experimental fiction maven Tantra Bensko, Independent Poetry Award-nominee Andrea Blythe, and Berkeley’s own Slammaster, Jaz Sufi. Between reading sets, we’ll be running a literary trivia game and giving away prizes to participants who know more about writers than they do about the quadratic equation* (we’re not saying you can’t know both, and if you do, we’re impressed!) If you’re in the Bay Area this week, make sure to make it out to at least one Litquake event—we’d be happy to see you at one of ours!

   This time next week, we’ll be gearing up for the 2015 NaNoWriMo. If you live in the Bay Area, EIC Lise Quintana and I will be facilitating the South Bay NaNoWriMo write-ins, so stay tuned to find out when and where you can meet up with us in Santa Cruz to get your write on. NaNoWriMo kicks off at midnight, October 31, so start sketching the outline for your Great American Novel.

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If you’re coming up blank with ideas for you NaNoWriMo project, why don’t you mosey on over to our Pinterest page? We’ve got loads of writing prompts we’ve collected from our favorite writing websites, and there’s sure to be a couple that’ll help you get your creativity flowing. (We’ll also be using some of these prompts at our NaNoWriMo write-ins as warm-ups, so we promise these prompts are accessible and fun.) Or if reading the work of other authors is what helps get the muse speaking to you, then download our app for iPhone or iPad and enjoy each issue of NonBinary Review, completely free. On Facebook, you can follow our pages (Zoetic PressLithomobilus) to keep up with the latest happenings, online features, blog posts and book reviews. And if you like a more personal touch,  we invite you to engage with us through the Zoetic Press Facebook group. All of our Facebook forums provide you with daily links to read new blogs, book reviews and Alphanumeric features! We’re also on Twitter (@ZoeticPress and @Lithomobilus), and you can even see some of our authors reading their work on our YouTube channel. If you’re interested in hearing more from us, sign up for our monthly newsletter. We’re serious about your privacy, and promise not to flood your inbox. Want to be a guest writer for Rhizomatic Ideas, or to profile one of our contributors? Send us a pitch at blog@zoeticpress.com. Have a book you’d like to tell the world about, or know a writer that everyone should know? Send us your reviews and author interviews! We also have a huge folder of ARC books and chapbooks that we can give you—again, for FREE—provided that you write up a short review of the title. How great are free books?

Until next week,
Allons-y!

Allie Marini
Managing Editor