The thirteenth annual Small Press Month, a nationwide celebration of the contributions of independent book publishers, is underway. Cosponsored by the New York Center for Independent Publishing, the Council of Literary Magazines and Presses, and the Independent Book Publishers Association, the schedule of events includes readings, book launches, author appearances, and other events that shore up support for and promote unity among small presses.
This week's schedule includes the Urban Word teen poetry slam in New York City, the Bay Area Anarchist Book Fair in San Francisco, the Tucson Festival of Books, and a number of smaller readings in Kentucky, Rhode Island, Texas, New Jersey, and elsewhere. A calendar of sponsored programming is available on the Small Press Month Web site, which also offers suggestions for independent publishers on how to publicize their books and build local small press communities.
"The small presses represent what is most brave, crazy, and beautiful about our country and our literature," says Sherman Alexie, who features prominently on the 2009 Small Press Month promotional poster. Alexie, whose most recent poetry collection, Face, is forthcoming in April from independent publisher Hanging Loose Press, urges writers and readers to "all sing honor songs for the independent publishers."