This morning in between our champagne and melba toast snack and the pre-brunch nap we managed to press "Send" and watched rapturously as our team of charioteers left Boston to take our next book to the printer: the good people at the employee-owed Thomson-Shore in Dexter, Michigan.
The six teams of charioteers (redundancy is all in a crucial job such as this�we learned our lesson when Geoff Ryman's collection disappeared in Ohio) are expected to be there in just ten days�despite having to travel through the wilds of "upstate" New York. If they stop off to worship the Real Mayor Emanuel in Chicago that may add another *&%$@! day.
Once the files have arrived, the carvers start carving the words into two stone "type" plates which, given the efficiencies of contemporary stone carving, should only take three days of three shift work. The plates are then transported to Lake Soybasedink and carefully dipped, one at a time. Once wet, the printer has only eighteen hours to print as many copies as they can before the ink dries. The pages (which, before being cut to book size, is nine feet by six feet of recycled goodness) are then flipped over and the stamped with the other plate. If everything lines up correctly: we have a book! If it doesn't, we have a more experimental collection than we hoped for. Fingers crossed.
Then it's just a question of getting the books onto a southward bound camel train to the Consortium Caverns in Jackson, Tennessee, from which they will be passenger pigeoned directly to you and me. Just in time for tea, I'd say.
The book is none other than a new collection by the late and much missed Joan Aiken. Now she was a storyteller. It's been pure pleasure working on The Monkey's Wedding and Other Stories. It's full of spooky, funny, heartbreaking, enchanting, clever, and sometimes wicked stories. There are 19 stories in all, six of which have never been published(!), and two of which were first published in Argosy Magazine under the pseudonym Nicholas Dee.
Which is where the fun comes in. We'd like you to post either your favorite pseudonym, your own (own up!), or one you'd like to use (it can be serious or . . . not so serious!) in the comments here:
On publication day* April 19, 2011 we will pick two winners each of whom will receive not only a copy of The Monkey's Wedding, but also an original issue of Argosy containing one of Joan's pseudonymous stories�as well as any goodies we have lying around the office.
You can see pictures of the issues of Argosy (one of which has a story by Isak Dinesen) here:
Girl in a Whirl
You can order your copy (hardcover or ebook) of The Monkey's Wedding here:
and please give us your pseudonym suggestions here:
* Although since the charioteers just left, I suspect the book may be late . . .
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In other news: Karen Lord's Redemption in Indigo received the Crawford Award and was longlisted for the OCM Book Prize.
And: Julia Holmes's Meeks is on the Tiptree Awards longlist!
Kelley Eskridge (Solitaire) is interviewed in the Lambda Literary Review:
Karen Joy Fowler's What I Didn't See and Other Stories was on many top 10 lists in the 2010 wrap-up edition of Locus. You can vote for it and many other books on their poll:
And Karen is busy running the Tiptree Book Club:
Holly Black's The Poison Eaters and Other Stories is coming out in paperback so we've dropped our hardcover price to $9.95:
We're working on many Geoff Ryman books�that collection, Paradise Tales, is slated for July 2011 and we have the final proofs from Geoff so nothing (besides the expected amount of unexpected delays) should stop us getting it out then. Really! The Child Garden�a great, odd novel of love in future London�will be out in May. New cover [by Kathleen Jennings] now up! http://smallbeerpress.com/forthcoming/2010/11/30/the-child-garden/
We have a new issue of LCRW in the works for, oh, say June. Only because it always comes out then.
We're working on covers for next autumn's and winter's books: we have a new set of reprints that will make perfect sense when you see them. There's a collection by one of our favorite writers. A debut hard science fiction novel. Some more.
Watch out for a mind-boggling anthology late in the year: Three Messages and a Warning: Contemporary Mexican Short Stories of the Fantastic, edited by Eduardo Jim�nez Mayo and Christopher N. Brown. Those guys have done a ton of work and it is a great book that will need all y'all's help to break out. (An anthology! In translation! No famous names! From a tiny indie press!)
Kelly and I are working on a small website for Steampunk! which comes out from Candlewick in October: yay!
goes from strength to strength�thank you! We're intent on building a central ebooksite for all indie presses. We just added tons of books from one of our faves, Subterranean Press. The bestsellers are the subscriptions to Ginn Hale's The Rifter, and the magazines: Lightspeed, Fantasy, Apex, Clarkesworld, and even our trusty own LCRW.
Thanks for reading! With Borders in bankruptcy and closing almost half their stores it's been a bit tough so we really appreciate all your support!
Small Beer Press
150 Pleasant St., #306,
Easthampton, MA 01027
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