Hurray, hurray, it’s release day! To celebrate, this post is the official unveiling of the cover designed by Gigi Little. Isn’t it amazing?
Brave on the Page: Oregon Writers on Craft and the Creative Life, $14, 200 pages, is available now at the downtown Portland Powell’s Books (in the purple room), at an Espresso Book Machine near you (check the hours of operation before going), or online at ondemandbooks.com. Brave on the Page is being released by Forest Avenue Press, a small independent publishing house in Portland, Oregon. I’m the founder of the press and the editor of this collection.
The book features interviews and essays by forty-two Oregon writers, including Lauren Kessler, Bart King, Gina Ochsner, Scott Sparling, Kristy Athens, Yuvi Zalkow, Jon Bell, Kim Cooper Findling, Matt Love and many more.
Although I’m launching the Seven Questions Series of writing books with an Oregon-specific volume, it’s really a universal look at the craft, including behind-the-scenes publication stories and advice on many writing-related topics.
There are essays on where characters come from, using overheard dialogue in fiction, faking errands to get a kiddo to fall asleep (and thus earning writing-in-the-car time), how movement generates ideas, not to mention an ode to writing implements and a poem about “the Write Life.” I envision this book on a shelf of writing craft books in New York, or Texas, or wherever you live. It’s about authors in different stages of their careers, and why we summon the courage to face the blank page when we could be doing so many other things. And investigating that drive, that impulse to create, is what makes this book universal.
Onward to prizes!
If you live near an Espresso Book Machine, other than the one at Powell’s, and if you go there to get your copy of Brave on the Page made to order, please send me a photo! It can be of you and the book, or the book and the machine, or your local Espresso staff member holding the book. Or your mom holding the book (hi, mom!). As long as Brave on the Page is in the picture, and you send me caption information (who and where you are), and you are okay with me posting the picture here (or on the Forest Avenue Press blog), you are a guaranteed winner of a three-page critique by me. I’d be thrilled to read a piece of a story or a novel or whatever you want to send. I’ll do them as fast as I can, but remember to be patient, because I’m only one person. You can send the photos to laurastanfill at hotmail dot com. And remember to include the caption information. I’m especially interested in which machine you visit! Once I get your photo I’ll send specific instructions for the critique prize.
Sorry, Portland residents. This critique giveaway is only open to out-of-towners as an incentive for them to find and use their local Espresso Book Machines. But if you want to go to Seattle to check out the machine at University Bookstore, I’d be happy to read three pages of your work!
Now–more prizes! Here’s what you can win just for commenting on this post. I’m giving away a copy of Scott Sparling’s novel, Wire to Wire, published by Tin House in 2011, and a copy of Yuvi Zalkow’s novel, A Brilliant Novel in the Works, published by MP Publishing in August 2012. The third prize, if you prefer, is the cassette tape of mid-’90s synthesizer music my would-be employers sent me when they were supposed to send my (earnest, heartfelt) high school flute tape back. If you missed it, the full story on that odd relic is here.
All you have to do is comment on this post by Friday, October 12, at 5 p.m. West Coast time for a chance to win. If you link to this post from your blog, or leave a comment saying you promoted it on Facebook and/or Twitter, those will count as additional entries. I’ll draw one winner, who will get to choose one of the prizes. I’ll draw a second winner if we have comments from 30 people or more (so not 30 comments, but comments from 30 different people). I’ll draw a third winner if we have more than 80 people comment.
If you want to stay updated about Brave on the Page, consider following my new blog, forestavenuepress.wordpress.com. I’ll be posting there regularly with book news, photos and details on the future of Forest Avenue Press.
Questions? Thoughts? Have you published a book, and if so, how did you celebrate? Any advice for me?