Wednesday, July 25, 2007

above/ground press: what happens at fourteen

Everybody knows it: I'm infamously late on various chapbooks over the past couple of years, including now-legendary lateness on perpetually-forthcoming chapbooks by Karen Clavelle (Winnipeg), Cath Morris (Vancouver) and Barry McKinnon (Prince George), as well as a corrected publication by Phil Hall (Toronto) and Margaret Christakos' (Toronto) STANZAS, and proper runs of those recent chapbooks by Kate Greenstreet and Rhonda Douglas [see my note on her here]. Oh my. Sadly, the only thing in the way has been financial; once I get to Edmonton, I'm hoping my increase in salary (going from "nothing" to "something") can allow me to not only clear out this massive backlog, but move into getting some new things published.

That being said, I'm still getting subscribers there and here (and have wayward packages for a couple of dozen other subscribers sitting in my little apartment), and am planning an above/ground press reading, chapbook launch and fourteenth anniversary party at The Ottawa Art Gallery on Thursday, August 23, 7:30pm as part of the Factory Reading Series (the last one before I head west). The evening will include readings and new publications by Ottawa poets William Hawkins, Amanda Earl and Marcus McCann, and can hopefully be the starting point for a return to above/ground productivity. For a few months now, I've even been working on an above/ground press "ALBERTA SERIES" that I won't say anything about yet, but watch for it in September; it'll be monthly, limited (for now), and available to very few but for various Albertans in the right place, and above/ground press subscribers (but widely available much later on). I will say nothing else.

I've even been wondering about doing a second volume of "best of," after Joe Blades let me do Groundswell: best of above/ground press 1993-2003 (2003), wondering if it's worth doing another one at twenty? I don’t even know how the first volume has sold…

here are the event details:

span-o (the small press action network - ottawa) & The Ottawa Art Gallery present:

The Factory Reading Series, lovingly hosted by rob mclennan

as a 14th anniversary above/ground press reading & chapbook launch

with new publications & readings by:
Amanda Earl (Ottawa), launching Eleanor
Marcus McCann (Ottawa), launching Heteroskeptical
& William Hawkins (Ottawa), launching the black prince of bank street

Thursday, August 23, 2007; readings at 7:30pm, doors at 7
The Ottawa Art Gallery in the Arts Court Building (Nicholas & Daly Streets)

author bios:

Marcus McCann is an editor and writer at Capital Xtra. His poetry debuted in the The Antigonish Review at age 18. He is the editor of, a selector for Bywords and a former selector for Yawp. With Nicholas Lea and Andrew Faulkner, he is the author-translator of Basement Tapes (The Onion Union, 2007), a chapbook of homolinguistic translations. As winner of the 2005 University of Ottawa 48-Hour Novella Writing Contest, his So Long, Derrida (UESA, 2006) was published by the university. Heteroskeptical (above/ground press, 2007) is his first solo poetry chapbook.

Amanda Earl's poems appear most recently in 3.0, and the Ottawa Arts Review. Amanda is the managing editor of and the Bywords Quarterly Journal. She blogs about literary stuff on and She also writes fiction and has been published in anthologies with the word sex in them. She will be launching her poetry chapbook Eleanor (above/groundpress).

William Hawkins was born in Ottawa. After side trips to the west coast and Mexico, he resides in the capital, pursuing enlightenment or a reasonable alternative thereto. Hawkins has worked as a truck driver, cook, journalist and musician before settling on the taxi profession as a means of preserving integrity and ensuring near-poverty. His poetry has appeared in eight collections, including Shoot Low, Sheriff, Theyre Riding Shetland Ponies (with Roy MacSkimming, Ottawa ON: privately printed, 1964), Two longer poems: The Seasons of Miss Nicky, by Harry Howith; and Louis Riel, by William Hawkins (Toronto ON: Patrician Press, 1965), Hawkins (Ottawa ON: Nil Press, 1966), Ottawa Poems (Kitchener ON: weed/flower press, 1966), The Gift of Space (Toronto ON: New Press, 1970), The Madmans War (Ottawa ON: S.A.W. Publications, 1974) and his second volume of selected poems, Dancing Alone: Selected Poems 1960-1990 (Fredericton NB: Broken Jaw Press / cauldron books, 2005), as well as various anthologies and many other public places. He has recorded a CD of his best songs, also titled Dancing Alone.

the small press action network - ottawa (cleaning out yr literary clogs since 1996); thanks to The Ottawa Art Gallery for providing space and much love.

next factory reading: December

related notes: new (finally, slowly) from above/ground press; above/ground press: the angry teen years;

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