Books I Hate (and Also Some I Like) – an interview with @ferrifrigida @EntropyMag

Talking about some recent books I didn’t like at all!

“Leland Cheuk and I must have known each other much better in another life. In two years of this column, this month is the first time a writer has answered more than one of my questions the same way I would have. His frustration with the conformity of large presses and writers who write about being writers is very much my own, and we may be the only two serious readers on earth who don’t like 2666.

Cheuk is the author of Letters from DinosaursThe Misadventures of Sulliver Pong, and the forthcoming No Good Very Bad Asian. He’s also the publisher of 7.13 Books, which you should be paying attention to if you aren’t already. Added to all this, he’s just a nice dude. Which is how I know that none of the hates he outlines below are personal.”

Read the rest here.

In the @kenyonreview – PUBLISHER SPOTLIGHT – ME of @713books #litmag #readindie #publishing #fiction

In the Kenyon Review Online, I talk to author Kristina Marie Darling about literary citizenship and 7.13 Books

From Kenyon Review Online’s Publisher Spotlight:

KMD:  What does literary citizenship mean to you and how does it shape your editorial decisions, approach to book publicity, and engagement with the larger community?

LC:  I suspect that most writers, whether emerging or mid-career, can feel the reality that books are declining in importance in our culture. The industry has become more corporate and commercial. And there are more entertainment options than ever. Sales for adult fiction, for example, are down 16% in just the last 5 years. The literary world is a relatively small niche. Consequently, a certain level of evangelism is required to keep this niche thriving. As a small press, we try to make editorial decisions the old-fashioned way—based on the strength of the manuscript, and the originality of the premise and execution. The main question I try to answer while reading is: Why hasn’t this type of book been published already? As for publicity, there’s more noise than ever, and there are formidable structural barriers in the book supply chain that prevent small presses from achieving large-scale sales, namely corporate distributors. Literary citizenship is critical for small press books. We rely on other authors and emerging writers to review our books and interview our authors. I used to review books, most of the time for free, just for the writing credit. I continue to interview small press authors, blurb their books, and post about books on social media. This evangelistic work is all sadly unpaid, but vital to the literary community. If we don’t feed the fire, the fire dies.

Read the rest here.

7.13 Books is up @poetswritersinc in Small Press Points

“Publishing four to five fiction titles a year from debut writers, the press seeks to offer ‘a publishing experience that’s respectful to and even reverent of first-time authors.’ Cheuk wants the press, which is located in New York City, to avoid the pitfalls of both traditional publishing houses.”

“July 13 holds special importance for writer and publisher Leland Cheuk. Not only is it the day that, in 2014, he found out his life had been saved by a successful bone marrow transplant from a stranger, but it’s also the day that his first novel, The Misadventures of Sulliver Pong, was picked up by the Chicago Center for Literature and Photography. Two years later, on the same day, Thought Catalog sent him an offer for his first story collection, Letters From Dinosaurs. So when Cheuk decided to start his own small press in 2016, he didn’t hesitate to name it 7.13 Books (713books.com).”

Read the rest here.