Category: On publishing


Announcing the short story collection Forgetting English

By John Yunker,

“Raymond’s prose often lights up the poetry-circuits of the brain…”   — The Seattle Times

I’m pleased to announce that Ashland Creek Press has published the third edition of Midge’s Raymond’s award-winning short story collection, Forgetting English.

In this new, expanded edition of her prize-winning collection, which includes a reading group guide, Midge Raymond stretches the boundaries of place as she explores the indelible imprint of home upon the self and the ways in which new frontiers both defy and confirm who we are.

The characters who inhabit these stories travel for business or for pleasure, sometimes out of duty and sometimes in search of freedom, and each encounters the unexpected. From a biologist navigating the stark, icy moonscape of Antarctica to a businesswoman seeking refuge in the lonely islands of the South Pacific, the characters in these stories abandon their native landscapes—only to find that, once separated from the ordinary, they must confront new interpretations of whom they really are, and who they’re meant to be.

Forgetting English won the Spokane Prize for Short Fiction. Here’s what two reviewers had to say:

“Raymond has quiet, unrelenting control over the writing; each story is compelling and thrives because each detail and line of dialogue reveals just a little more about the characters and the evocative settings.” —The Rumpus

“All of her stories are heartbreakingly honest … I wouldn’t be surprised if she started getting compared to Alice Munro or Jhumpa Lahiri.” — Seattle Books Examiner

Learn more.

 

 

On Valentine’s Day, Love Rhymes with Everything!

By Midge Raymond,

Valentine’s Day is the perfect day to launch our newest title, Love Rhymes with Everything: Animal Ruminations through Poetry & Paintings.

This beautiful book is the result of a unique collaboration among artist, poet, and publisher, all of whom have volunteered their time, skills, and resources to create a full-color art book that will delight and entertain — as well as benefit animal rescue organizations!

In Love Rhymes with Everything, you’ll meet sanctuary animals and beloved pets, rescues and strays now living in peace among their own, or in forever homes with their human families. You’ll meet cows and pigs, dogs and fish, chickens and ducks, cats and goats — and many more.

You’ll see the beautiful faces of these exquisite creatures captured by Dana Feagin’s whimsical paintings, and you’ll hear their voices in Kat von Cupcake’s affecting poetry. In this collection of rescued and beloved animals, you’ll learn that, for these fortunate animals, love truly can conquer all — and, with all proceeds from this book benefiting animal rescue organizations, that love stretches far beyond these pages.

Every penny from the sales of Love Rhymes with Everything will benefit animals; visit the book’s web page to see which animal organizations — including Karuna for Animals, Sanctuary One, and The Sanctuary at Soledad Goats — are selling the book, and buy directly to support them.

If you’re with a rescue organization and would like copies of Love Rhymes with Everything for fundraising purposes, please visit our Nonprofit Partners page.

And for all of you in Southern Oregon: Join us for our book-launch event on Sunday, February 26, at South Stage Cellars in Jacksonville. South Stage Cellars has generously donated its tasting rooms for the event, and all proceeds from this launch party will benefit Sanctuary One. Click here for more details!

Announcing the 2016 Siskiyou Prize finalists

By John Yunker,

This is the third year of the Siskiyou Prize for New Environmental Literature, and we’re pleased to see it gaining momentum and awareness. Now more than ever we need a chorus of creative and passionate voices speaking up for the planet and all of its species.

This year, we received more than a hundred submissions, which included a wide range of fiction, short story and essay collections, memoirs, nonfiction nature books, and a number of previously published works in all categories. We began reviewing submissions when the contest opened in September of last year and have been reading steadily since then.

Every manuscript was given careful consideration, and the decision-making process was very difficult, given the exceptional quality of this year’s entries. As much as we love this contest, the hardest part is having to narrow the list down to only a few titles. It’s a completely subjective process, of course, and we thank all who contributed their work to this year’s prize.

We are delighted to announce the finalists and semifinalists:

FINALISTS

Three Ways to Disappear
A novel by Katy Yocom

Small Small Redemption
Essays by Sangamithra Iyer

The Heart of the Sound
A memoir by Marybeth Holleman
Published by Bison Books

Song of the Ghost Dog
A novel by Sharon Piuser

SEMIFINALISTS

Karstland
A novel by Caroline Manring

Rumors of Wolves
A novel by C.K. Adams

The Harp-Maker of Exmoor
A novel by Hazel Prior

 

The four finalists will move on to final judging by JoeAnn Hart.

We hope to announce a winner in the next month or so. To be among the first to hear the announcement, stay tuned to this blog or subscribe to our newsletter.

Again, thanks to everyone who submitted and everyone who writes with the goal of making this world a better place. We appreciate your support!

The Siskiyou Prize for New Environmental Literature

 

 

Announcing the 2016 Siskiyou Prize

By Midge Raymond,

We are thrilled to announce that the third annual Siskiyou Prize for New Environmental Literature is now open for submissions!

siskiyou_logo

It’s been wonderful to see so many fine writers tackling the issues of the environment and animal protection through great stories, novels, memoirs, and essays — and we are pleased to be offering this prize for a third year. This year, we have one exciting change to announce: In addition to unpublished work (all of which will be considered for publication by Ashland Creek Press), we are also accepting published book submissions for the Siskiyou Prize. Please click here for full details.

This year, we’re delighted to have JoeAnn Hart as our final judge. JoeAnn is the author of two novels, Addled (Little Brown, 2007) and Float (Ashland Creek Press, 2013). JoeAnn’s essays, articles, and short fiction have appeared in a wide variety of literary journals and national publications, including Orion, NewfoundTerrain.org, and the Boston Globe Magazine. Her work has won a number of awards, including the PEN New England Discovery Award in Fiction. To learn more about JoeAnn, click here.

The 2016 prize winner will receive $1,000 and a four-week residency at PLAYA. All Siskiyou Prize submissions will be considered for publication from Ashland Creek Press. Visit the Siskiyou Prize website for complete details and to submit.

The deadline for submissions is December 31, 2016. Also, please note that we will be closed to regular book submissions until further notice in order to focus on prize submissions.

Corona

 

We look forward to reading your work!

An interview with publicist and media specialist Jen Coburn

By Midge Raymond,

A book launch can be a daunting process, and many authors wonder how hiring a publicist can help the process. Learn more in this interview with author, publicist, and media specialist Jen Coburn — and see below for Jen’s contact info.

 

Q: What value can a publicist bring to an author and his/her book?

A: A good publicist lets authors get back to doing what they love — writing. There are very few authors who enjoy developing media pitches and social media strategies to promote their books, and yet they know it is critical to their success. The equation is very simple: The more people know about a book, the more will read it. A publicist helps get a book in front of as many prospective readers as possible through social media, traditional media, and events.

Jen-with-tree

 
Q: How much can an author expect to spend when working with a publicist?

A: It really depends on how much of the heavy lifting a writer wants to take on. I’ve had authors do a simple two-hour consultation for $250, where we discuss good traditional media angles and social media strategies that they develop and execute. I also work with authors who have me manage their social media for them on a daily basis, which is a more substantial investment. When I do a prepublication media campaign, it typically runs $2,500 to $3,500.

 
Q: Ideally, when should an author approach a publicist for help with his/her book?

A: Ideally six months prior, though that rarely happens. I’ve had authors contact me three months prior to publication, which is good. One called me two weeks before her book came out. It was a mad rush, but we made it work and got her on TV and in several newspapers.

 
Q: How can publicists help authors when their books have been out for a year or more?

A: Great question. There are still many ways an author can promote his or her book after it’s been out on the market for a while. Writing op-eds and essays that include the name of their book in the byline is one way. Another way to boost sales is by offering a special price break then promoting like crazy on social media.

 
Q: What is the author’s role when working with a publicist?

A: Authors need to be open to new approaches while also remaining true to their own style. I’m very flexible to work with, but my one hard and fast rule is that I never let an author go on TV without my doing a media training with me beforehand. I’ve been working with producers for more than 20 years, and I can blow those relationships in a moment if I put someone on camera who hasn’t been adequately prepped.

 
Q: What questions should an author ask a publicist he/she is considering working with?

A: What type of coverage they believe they can realistically get for an author. I once had an author ask me if I’ve ever declined to work with anyone, which I thought was an interesting question that led to a great conversation. I have turned down authors because I don’t feel we’d be a good match. If I don’t love their book, or I honestly don’t think there’s a good news angle to be developed, I will pass on a project. Basically, I’d recommend choosing a publicist the same way you’d hire anyone — share your priorities, listen to their approach, and keep your BS radar on. There are lots of great publicists to work with. Choose the one who seems genuinely excited about the success of his or her clients.

 

Q: Do you have any success stories you’d like to share?

A: Just last week, an author I work with jumped to the #1 spot on the Amazon bestseller list for historical fiction 10 months after initial publication. She called me a few weeks earlier to brainstorm ideas on promotion and we developed a social media campaign around a price reduction. She is a great client — always willing to try new things and good about pushing back when a suggestion doesn’t feel right to her. I adore working with this author and couldn’t be happier for her success.

 

Jennifer Coburn has been a media relations specialist for more than 20 years and recently started working with authors to help them promote their work on social media and through traditional media. She has partnered with authors who publish with Random House, Simon & Schuster, Sonoma Press, and independently. Jennifer enjoys developing media pitches and crafting strategies to heighten awareness of books and authors. She got her start working with authors after her own books generated press attention that got colleagues asking for advice. Jennifer says she never asks authors to adopt a strategy she has not (or would not) do herself.

Check out Jen’s author website here, and for inquiries about her publicity and media work, you can reach out to her via LinkedIn.