Starting a Press


In a journal entry I made almost exactly 8 months ago, I noted that I had started sending poems off to various journals. Nothing really came from that, though I must admit I have not been intensely disciplined about it. One of the options I had considered and rejected before sending off my poems was that of starting a small press. Last night I got to thinking about that idea again, and I concluded that I do in fact want to start a small publishing house (something along the lines of Graywolf Press). I'm not sure when I'll start this endeavor -- it might not happen for another few years -- but I feel that I could add a tremendous amount of value to the world by doing this.

Obviously it would be a convenient way for me to publish certain of my own writings (such as Ancient Fire and the book I envision writing under the title The Tao of Roark). However I am perhaps even more excited about the prospect of seeing to press books that might never otherwise see the light of day -- books such as a volume of short stories by Ron Merrill (if his literary executors would agree to that -- I had already published two of his stories in the Monadnock Review before he passed away), the portrait novella by Stephen Marvin that I published, an updated version of the poems of John Enright including those included in his earlier volume "Starbound and Other Poems", some translations by Leonard Cottrell, and maybe even a volume of poems by Moira Russell, the original Cobalt Poetry Goddess! (Not that I presume that any of these writers necessarily want to have me publish their books, it's just that these are the sorts of works I would like to publish.)

I would also like to extend this idea to the pressing of music as well as of books, since I've written a bit of guitar music in my time and I know several composers who have written good music that is not getting an audience.

Well, it'll probably be a few years before I'm ready to start on this, but in the meantime I'll do some preparatory work. Who knows, maybe I'll make faster progress on the idea than I expect.... :)

Peter Saint-Andre > Journal