This is a fun surprise!
Just before the holidays, I did an interview with the chapbook and novella website Speaking of Marvels, and today that interview went live.
I love Speaking of Marvels, by the way. I only recently started reading them — my publisher, sunnyoutside press, sent them my direction — but we need more places that focus on these beautiful oddball cousins to the novel and the collection, the novella and the chapbook. And Speaking of Marvels does a great job; I’m thrilled they exist.
In my interview, I talk a lot about my own chapbook, Box Cutters, as well as some of my chapbooks-in-progress and what I love about the form. I also mention some of my favorite chapbooks and chapbook publishers, including books by my friend Matthew Burnside and books from Passenger Side Books, run by my friend Ryan Werner.
By strange coincidence, before I even saw that my own interview was live this morning, I’d already read another interview — between Matthew Burnside and Ryan Werner! — over at Boaat Press.
So today you get a twofer: my interview, and also the interview Matthew did with Ryan.
And then you get to go buy lots of chapbooks, because between Boaat Press and Speaking of Marvels, we’ve given you a heck of a shopping list!
7 thoughts on “Chapbook interviews!”
Why do you particularly like chapbooks?? Just curious. Are there publishers that specialize in chapbooks–apparently so.
Used to be chapbooks were a specialty thing, a lot of them self-published. But these days there are loads of small presses and micropresses who publish nothing but chapbooks, and to my great pleasure, there are more and more that publish prose chapbooks (that wasn’t always the case — chaps used to be mostly the purview of poetry).
I love chapbooks for a whole range of reasons, most of which I outlined in a post about chapbooks a couple of years back (https://snoekbrown.com/2012/08/20/on-chapbooks/). But the short version is that, more than most other books today, chapbooks are works of art. Many of them are handmade, some still by letterpress, and a lot of the time when you pick one up you can tell that a human being handled the work. And they’re usually in limited runs, too, with reprints being quite rare. So when you have a chapbook, you have something special.
I also like the length. They have the expansion and diversity of a collection, but they’re so small that they also have Poe’s compression and unity — you can read them in an hour or so, and if they’re done right, they have a single thematic statement to make. They’re fascinating that way.
Sam, I wonder if you would pass to me the details of the ‘indie review sites’ you mentioned. Thanks.
Sure. You can get a head start by checking out the sites and online magazines that reviewed my books — the first few on my Box Cutters page (https://snoekbrown.com/books/box-cutters/) and Hagridden (https://snoekbrown.com/books/hagridden/). Those are all great places to check. But there are a few others. When I get a chance, I’ll email you.
Wondering if any chapbook presses publish short, specialized travel chapbooks? Do you or anyone else here know?
Hmm! That’s interesting! There’s a small press here in Portland that has a series of chapbooks about the city, but that’s a local thing. One person you might check with is travel writer Emily Grosvenor: http://www.emilygrosvenor.com She’s a friend of mine.