Kendra Steiner Editions

February 23, 2008

KSE welcomes MK Chavez and Jim D. Deuchars

Filed under: Uncategorized — kendrasteinereditions @ 5:07 pm

Just got the OK from Caleb Puckett and Hosho McCreesh on the cover for their forthcoming chapbook NEXT EXIT: EIGHT, the latest in our series of poetic dynamic-duos serving up collections of poems rooted in small towns and back roads—-this time featuring Oklahoma and New Mexico. This chapbook is KSE #89 and will be available in mid-March. Check the blog for details.

We’re also welcoming San Francisco-based poet MK CHAVEZ to the KSE family. Ms. Chavez has prepared a mind-bending eight-poem suite called VISITATIONS. Since reading her haunting chapbook VIRGIN EYES, I’ve felt she belonged at Kendra Steiner Editions, so I was ecstatic when she agreed to do a chapbook of all-new material. VISITATIONS will also be out in March, and I’ll talk more about MK and her work at that time. Until then, check out her website at  http://littlebrownsparrow.com   and while you are there, order a copy of VIRGIN EYES. It’s the best $5.95 you’ll ever spend.

Also joining the KSE family is Pittsburgh-based poet Jim D. Deuchars. I friended Jim on myspace last year just to get a regular flow of his swirling, majestic verse, and he’s also to be found in a number of online literary journals. Jim works equally well in many different styles, and he’s putting together a new collection especially for this project. For an advance taste of Jim’s work, check out the beautiful poem “Your Art is Done (For Allen Ginsberg)” at Polarity magazine: http://www.poembeat.com/fall2007/deuchars1.html . Jim’s new chapbook for KSE should be out in May.

With forthcoming solo chaps by Adrian Manning and Doug Draime later in the Spring of 2008 and more new authors joining the crew as of the Summer (can’t give details yet), we hope that 2008 will be a great poetry year.

Be sure to pick up the March 2008 issue of Arthur Magazine. Not only an essential cultural/political read (as is every issue!), but two KSE chapbooks were chosen among the items on the “best reading” list!

And if you are not already checking it out daily, don’t miss RE:GENERATOR for the best in political and cultural commentary/analysis:  http://www.regeneratormag.com/ . Robert Starvation is one of my favorite writers in any genre, and reading his trenchant analyses of this curious society in which we live literally makes my day.

February 22, 2008

STILL (KSE #81) now available

Filed under: Uncategorized — kendrasteinereditions @ 4:07 pm

My newest offering, STILL (KSE #81), is now available. This is the third (and final)  volume in an unintended “cold weather trilogy” along with SLASH & BURN and PULSES OF TIME.

Originally titled WILLIAMSPORT STILL-LIFE when in the planning stages, this five-page suite was intended to take a setting containing remnants of the 1800’s “Gilded Age” (Williamsport, PA) and balance it against today’s New Gilded Age. Also, one of the great American still-life painters of the 1800’s, Severin Roesen (born in Germany), worked out of Williamsport, and I felt that the still-life painting genre was a nice emblem of an age of wealth and excess. Therefore, I juxtaposed the still-life painting details against the details of Robber Baron capitalism, a kind of thesis/antithesis of the original golden age, containing the contradictions of the period, yet entwined. And this material was then bookended with a contemporary 2008 consciousness existing within the same space (a Gilded Age mansion), leading to the poem’s final passage: “bleed-through  /  from one Gilded Age  /  to another.”

As the original title was subtracted from to create the new title, STILL, the poem’s original conception was subtracted from until what is left is a series of peaks of various heights, with no valleys. Or if you prefer, Hemingway’s “iceberg” theory—-where the 7/8 of the iceberg under water (the details known to the author but not included in the written work) controls the 1/8 of the iceberg seen above water. Whatever image is used, STILL is a concentrated painterly study of two Gilded Ages. While the transfer of wealth from the working members of society to the affluent since the Age of Reagan has not been as extreme as, say, what happened during the Russia of Boris Yeltsin’s days, it is still VERY clear to any un-biased observer, and Reagan’s goal of essentially dismantling the New Deal has come true much more than The Gipper might have ever thought possible. 

I hope you find STILL interesting and worthwhile. Only 26 copies of this one available, and I’ve already distributed 10 of them, so act fast. Why not pick this up as part of the 3-for-$10 deal, along with NEXT EXIT: SIX by K.M. Dersley and Adrian Manning and LAST MAY (1968) by Doug Draime…… Check payable to Bill Shute, 8141-B Pat Booker Rd. #399, San Antonio, Texas, 78233.

Got thousands of dollars sitting around you don’t know what to do with? Buy an original Severin Roesen still-life painting. Heck, I’d love to have one on my living room wall, right above the Dell printer and the stack of Jandek CD’s here at Kendra Steiner Editions Central. Choose from six available paintings at this link (click on the paintings to enlarge):

http://www.artnet.com/artist/14429/severin-roesen.html

 Alas, KSE does not get a commission on these!

February 17, 2008

3600+ visitors to KSE blog!

Filed under: Uncategorized — kendrasteinereditions @ 12:10 pm

WOW! As of today, we’ve had over 3600 visitors to the Kendra Steiner Editions blog!

While some of that traffic comes from people typing in the web address from the back of books and some comes from people doing google searches of “Kendra Steiner” or one of our authors, many of our visitors come via links from our friends’ websites/blogs, such as Orange Alert, Christopher Cunningham, Misti Rainwater-Lites, and Zachary C. Bush. Other visitors come via the blog address being listed whenever new poems appear online from Doug Draime or when Doug’s work is reviewed. In any event, I hear every few days from people who have stumbled upon the blog and continue to check it out every few weeks. People’s time is valuable and they could be reading The Defamer or Perez Hilton instead of the KSE blog, so thanks!!!

The blog has also become the major outlet for selling the books. In 2006, I relied on bookstore placements and on appearances at bookfairs and readings. In 2007, I still relied on personal appearances (I would usually give two FREE chapbooks to anyone who purchased a copy of POINT LOMA PURPLE for $10 at a reading/signing/bookfair) and a handful of distributors, but by Fall 2007, most sales came through the blog, and when KSE became listed with Paypal, we began getting significant overseas direct-ordering. Now, some of our most reliable customers, people who buy virtually everything!, are Europeans. Although our goals are modest (50-75 copy editions of most books), we are getting our little books out there to readers and fellow poets and bloggers/reviewers, and managing both to stay free of the daisy-chain poetry cliques and to not have to kiss anyone’s ass.

We may slow down a bit in 2008 in terms of the number of books that come out each month, but we’ll still have at least one major release of BRAND NEW WORK from a great poet each month, and also the occasional works from yours truly, reprints of long out-of-print chaps, etc. We’ve just added two of my favorite working American poets to our roster (one from SF Bay Area, one from Pennsylvania—-I’ll be making the announcements about them soon—-one will have a release in May, the other in the Summer…I hope!), and I’m in the process of negotiating with two more UK poets who would join the mix later in 2008. And that’s not even mentioning the solo chap coming from Adrian Manning in a few months, the Hosho McCreesh/Caleb Puckett NEXT EXIT: EIGHT that will come out in March (I’ve just finished editing/formatting that text and will e-mail the proofs to the poets this afternoon), and the volume of Oregon-based poems from Doug Draime we’re working on presently.

So stay tuned. We offer quality poetry  that you can’t get anywhere else  in an attractive but modest package at a low price. I certainly champion the work we do at KSE, but I also love the work put out by Scintillating Publications, Bottle of Smoke, Burning Deck, Green Integer, Effing Press, The Chuckwagon, Kamini Press, Zeitgeist, Longhouse (their beautiful “accordion-fold” booklets are beyond compare!), Concrete Meat, Erbacce, and many others. Each has its own distinctive vision, and each has made the world a better place by taking that vision and imagining it into reality, leaving a legacy of stimulating poetry books that will be still finding audiences and changing lives and inspiring readers long after you and I are gone. I recently calculated, after someone asked me and I couldn’t come up w/ an answer, that with all the copies printed of the 85 chapbooks KSE has issued so far, we have distributed OVER 5000 chapbooks since March 2006, when KSE #1, FOUR TEXAS STREAMS, was issued and sold locally in the San Antonio area and through Volcanic Tongue in Glasgow, Scotland. 5000 chapbooks out there in the hands of readers. All typed and edited and formatted and printed on this cheap Dell computer.  All cut and assembled and packaged on my dining room table. All proofread and double-checked and critiqued by Kendra and by my wonderful wife, Mary Anne, before release.

The message here is, if I can do this, YOU CAN TOO. I thought “there ought to be a small press that does so-and-so in such-and-such a manner.” And since there wasn’t one, I did it myself.  YOU CAN TOO… And you should! Remember the words of Fluxus pioneer George Maciunas, “Anything can be art and anyone can do it.”

KSE poets championed at Arthur magazine (March 2008)

Filed under: Uncategorized — kendrasteinereditions @ 11:06 am

In the new March 2008 issue of Arthur magazine (the one with Diamanda Galas on the cover), both Thurston Moore and Byron Coley post a “best of…” list, and KSE has TWO listings on Byron’s best-reading list:

MICHAEL LAYNE HEATH, “Sacred Grounds” (KSE 78—-still available!)

and

BILL SHUTE, “In Perspective” (KSE 61—-out of print)

SACRED GROUNDS has received a lot of positive notice since its November release. I’d have to say that along with the works of Doug Draime and Luis Cuauhtemoc Berriozabal,  SACRED GROUNDS and Michael Layne Heath have received the most critical acclaim of any post-summer-2007 KSE chapbooks. More reviews of the book should be forthcoming, so I’ll try to keep SACRED GROUNDS in-print for awhile. Mike has been doing some readings in the SF Bay Area to support the book and it’s available in some SF bookstores.

As for IN PERSPECTIVE, that was written in July and printed in August 2007 in a micro-edition of 15 copies (with another 5 un-numbered “promo” copies). It’s a series of 5 portraits of North Texas and 1 portrait of Austin, written under the spell of painters Vanessa Bell and David Hockney, after I saw an amazing exhibition including a number of their works in DFW. Here’s what Volcanic Tongue had to say about it:   Another very limited new collection from Shute in a painterly style that seems to reflect back to some of his earlier Kendra Steiner work. These are sketches of North Texas done under the spell of David Hockney, Vanessa Bell, Francis Bacon and Stanley Spencer and they are supremely tactile, sensuous evocations of overloaded vision in space.   Alas, IN PERSPECTIVE is out of print (it contains color artwork on each page—-one reason it was such a limited printing!) although it may appear in a “selected poems” collection I’ve been asked to put together for 2009.

With Arthur Magazine having a circulation of 60,000+ copies and always being snapped up within days of hitting the racks, and with Arthur being perhaps THE cultural magazine of this current period (filling the void of FORCED EXPOSURE), we are honored to have been written up THREE times so far, not including this mention on the “reading list.” Thanks for the support!

February 10, 2008

KSE #87, Doug Draime’s LAST MAY (1968), now available!

Filed under: Uncategorized — kendrasteinereditions @ 2:35 pm

Legendary west-coast poet Doug Draime is back with his fourth KSE chapbook, LAST MAY (1968). Like Hosho McCreesh’s recent 37 PSALMS, this was a work that magically appeared out of the blue as the poet and I were working on ANOTHER project! In a month or two, Doug will appear with a chapbook full of poems about his home for the last two decades, Oregon. As we were working on that collection, Doug sent me a long poem he’d written in 1968 (when he was living in L.A.) after a trip to Oregon, thinking it was Oregon-related and I’d enjoy it. I was floored by it and asked if I could put it out as is, and Doug agreed. We added one more poem that was also written in 1968, and that has become this new chapbook LAST MAY (1968), one that literally came out of the blue.

Although I was in elementary school at the time, the late 60’s psychedelic era has always been hugely influential on me, and I see it as a great liberating period in American culture. The first 45’s I purchased as a little boy of 9 and 10 were things like “I Am The Walrus” and “2000 Light Years From Home” and the like. I can remember buying copies of Wonderwall Music and Odessey and Oracle and Their Satanic Majesties Request (the latter in MONO!) at the local supermarket for 99 cents in the cutout bin as well as trashy “psychsploitation” albums by T. Swift and the Electric Bag, The Powers of Blue, The Underground, etc.  Although I had no idea about what drugs were at age 9 or 10, I would sit in the corner, put on one of those records, and let my mind take me to distant and uncharted places. When I discovered the films of Warhol and Godard and Anger, or the writings of William Burroughs or Gertrude Stein or Harry Crosby or Ted Berrigan, a few years later in the early 70s, it all made perfect sense because my mind had been split open at such a young age. And when punk hit in my later teen years, the aesthetic behind Wire or Throbbing Gristle or Smegma or Boyd Rice or Cabaret Voltaire made perfect sense and was clearly an extension of what, say, Warhol or Burroughs or the Velvet Underground or Terry Riley had done ten years earlier. It all fit together, it all continued to grow and evolve, and it is still growing and evolving today, and it will continue to grow and evolve (or should I say “mutate”) in the future AND FOREVER.

Doug was a part of that 1960’s cultural awakening, Los Angeles Division, and the long poem “Last May” takes the reader right into the bubbling cauldron of experimentation that was 1968. Everything was possible, nothing would not be tried once. The floodgates were opened then, and I don’t think they’ve ever been fully closed again after that.

I would never tell another person how to live or how to think. However, I feel that people as a whole would benefit by wiping clean the slate of their pasts, their inherited beliefs and cultural biases—-by stepping outside of themselves, questioning every assumption, and rebuilding themselves as they desire themselves to be as if they were picking out entree items and side dishes at a cafeteria. If it takes acid or peyote to help that happen, then that’s what it takes. There are also many other ways of reaching that point. Everyone is different. But pushing the personal “reset” button is the way to liberation IMHO.

And the same is true in the arts. As John Ashbery once observed about Gertrude Stein’s Stanzas in Meditation, attempting the impossible is “the only thing worth trying to do.” And that was what Doug was trying to do in LAST MAY back in 1968. With 40 years of distance now on his achievement, I must say that he completely succeeded. It’s as if Wordsworth dropped acid and heard the colors and saw the sounds. With decades of collage-based and assemblage-based artworks behind us now, Doug’s kaleidoscopic idyllic vision in this work has been validated.

These two pieces—-the longer “Last May” and the short poem “Experiments in Light”—-have never before been published and come straight from Doug Draime’s personal archives in an edition of 49 copies. I’ve already sent out about a dozen in the first week and Volcanic Tongue in Glasgow will also be getting a stack, so you’d better act soon to get this historic, beautiful creation in its original edition.

Why not take advantage of our 3-for-$10 offer? Get LAST MAY (1968), the new all-England NEXT EXIT: SIX by K.M. Dersley and Adrian Manning, and my own SLASH & BURN (a work that, like most of my pieces, I’d like to think of as one of those “extensions” of the psychedelic aesthetic I described above) for one low price.

Check (or well-concealed cash) payable to Bill Shute, 8141-B Pat Booker Rd. #399, San Antonio, Texas, 78233. Overseas, books are only $5 each, postpaid. Write and request a paypal invoice.

February 9, 2008

NEXT EXIT: SIX, the all-England edition (KSE #80) now available

Filed under: Uncategorized — kendrasteinereditions @ 7:20 pm

The latest installment in our NEXT EXIT series—-collections of poems by pairs of poets writing about the specifics of place—-is now available, and it’s an all-England edition. NEXT EXIT: SIX features two distinctive and distinguished English poets, K. M. Dersley (who has done two solo chapbooks for KSE, RETROSPECTIVE FORECASTS and BLUE VELOUR) and Adrian Manning (author of one of my favorite poetry chapbooks of the last  year, REPEATING THE MANTRA—–Adrian is also working on a solo chap for KSE which should appear later in 2008).

CRASTER, NORTHUMBERLAND

IPSWICH, SUFFOLK

WHITLEY BAY, NORTHUMBERLAND

DEDHAM, ESSEX

WIGSTON, LEICESTERSHIRE

WOODBRIDGE, SUFFOLK

STRATFORD, WARWICKSHIRE

SHEFFIELD, SOUTH YORKSHIRE

 

To an American, these names are as rich with imagery and associations in our imaginations as town names such as Ponca City, Oklahoma; White Sulphur Springs, West Virginia; or Fort Stockton, Texas must be to Europeans. As the NEXT EXIT poets such as Doug Draime, Misti Rainwater-Lites, Christopher Cunningham, and Brad Kohler have illuminated the real America underneath the surface of various towns, so K.M. Dersley and Adrian Manning provide us with the tastes, the textures, the sounds, and the silences of the East Midlands and East of England through their verse—-the churches and harbours and coldwater flats and wool hats and knitters cottages and mills and pubs and life as it is lived today in the Britain of 2008. The syntax, the vocabulary, the rhythm, the wit, all are uniquely English in these fine new poems,

written over the last few months specifically for this project. My interest in British music of the 1960s got me interested originally in the different regions of the UK—-after all, places such as Newcastle, Hull, Liverpool, Manchester, Bristol, and Croydon are as different as Memphis, Minneapolis, Tulsa, San Diego, and Long Island! Knowing about each area helped me to appreciate both the music and the culture that produced it.

To keep the NEXT EXIT series a solely American series seemed arbitrary to me. The whole point of the series is that there is a rich and complex and fascinating history and culture and lifestyle WHEREVER YOU ARE.

 

And this trip to the UK costs only $4, which would hardly get you a cup of tea in today’s England with the dollar virtually worthless next to the Pound! Why not pick up our two other new February releases as part of the 3-for-$10 (within North America) deal: NEXT EXIT: SIX, plus Doug Draime’s mind-blowing LAST MAY (1968), and my own frost-bitten Pittsburgh sequence SLASH & BURN. Check made payable to William Shute (or well-concealed cash) sent to Bill Shute, 8141-B  Pat Booker Rd. #399, San Antonio, Texas, 78233. Outside North America, books are $5 each postpaid. Write and request a paypal invoice if outside of the US.

 

NEXT EXIT:EIGHT will be our next release in the series (SEVEN will be on-hold awhile) and features the American Southwest, with Caleb Puckett coming at you from Oklahoma and Hosho McCreesh representing New Mexico. That will come out on or around March 20.

 

Thanks as always for your interest and support!

 

 

February 4, 2008

fastest-selling KSE poetry chapbooks

Filed under: Uncategorized — kendrasteinereditions @ 8:09 pm

Hosho McCreesh’s new 37 PSALMS FROM THE BADLANDS has been selling quite well, and when I’ve mentioned that to a few people, they asked, “what are your fastest sellers?” Probably the following…

the quickest selling of all was

KSE #37,  BYRON COLEY/DAVID KEENAN/BILL SHUTE, “Voluntary Quicksand (Remembering Richard Brautigan)”

after that, I’d say the following were close behind:

KSE #52, DOUG DRAIME, “Eyestone”

KSE #69, CHRISTOPHER CUNNINGHAM, “Next Exit: Five”

KSE #29, STUART CRUTCHFIELD/BILL SHUTE “Stream (Salmon and Blood)”

KSE #59, LUIS CUAUHTEMOC BERRIOZABAL, “Without Peace”

KSE #36, BILL SHUTE, “Come on, React!”

In terms of being a steady seller, MICHAEL CASEY’S “The Bopper” (KSE #54) continues to bring in orders each month as his fans discover that it exists, and MISTI RAINWATER-LITES’s two KSE chapbooks (“Lullabies for Jackson” and “Next Exit: Three”) are long-term favorites as people find Misti via her internet presence, fall in love with her work, and wonder “where has this amazing writer been all my life?”.

Every one of our chapbooks has its audience out there somewhere. Of the 85+ chaps we’ve issued so far, for each one, I’ve heard from SOMEONE who says that that one is his or her favorite. Having a diverse catalog is important, and we’ll try to keep that happening.

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Also, for you trainspotters out there, two KSE chapbooks were assigned numbers, but never actually issued. They are

KSE #51, BILL SHUTE, “Cactus Barrier” (cinema poetry series #2)–I still plan to finish that someday!

KSE #44, DAVID KEENAN/BILL SHUTE, “Within Hod, Within”–this was going to be a collaboration between Scottish poet DK and yours truly, and we both did a lot of work on it, but David was busy with many many other projects both literary and musical and business-related, and I’d already moved on to other things, so we mutually agreed to drop it. David’s working on a novel presently, which I’m sure will blow everyone away when it’s finished.

UGLY THINGS magazine #26 now available

Filed under: Uncategorized — kendrasteinereditions @ 7:31 am

The new 224-page issue #26 of the legendary UGLY THINGS magazine is now available, featuring four reviews from yours truly. Ordering information at

http://www.ugly-things.com/  .

I’ve worked with UT main-man Mike Stax on various projects since the 1980’s, and he and I are the co-authors of a long out-of-print book (published in the UK) on the British R&B/beat/punk band The Downliners Sect. Mike is also a brilliant musician and songwriter having worked in such seminal bands as The Crawdaddys and The Tell-Tale Hearts, and for the last decade or so The Loons. UGLY THINGS is really the only magazine that matters in terms of over-the-edge vintage rock’n’roll, then or now. Mike is also a superb editor, and as a writer I’ve found it a privilege to work for/with him. Be sure to buy the new magazine (available via the website, with payment through paypal), and then don’t schedule anything to do for the next four days!!!

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