1. Reader Elizabeth Streb & poet Danita Geltner 2. Jamie Schwartz, the Managing Director of the Council of Literary Magazines and Presses, & Dan Machlin, a poet and executive editor of Futurepoem Books.
For the past two years, CLMP has been working with five different writers for their program called Face Out. What is Face Out? In short, it highlights the relationship between writers and their publishers, especially emerging writers working with small, indie presses. Last night CLMP hosted a reading and reception at Greenlight Books to celebrate the culmination of this project. Readers and their works were as follows:
Paul Foster Johnson, author of Study in Pavilions and Safe Rooms, a book of hallucinatory yet clever poems from Portable Press @ Yo-Yo Labs;
Rachel Levitsky, author of The Story of My Accident is Ours, a forthcoming experimental novel with “no characters, no events, and hardly any time,” from Futurepoem;
Elizabeth Streb, author of How to Become an Extreme Action Hero, which combines memoir with analysis of her methods of extreme modern dance, from Feminist Press. This was the stand out of the evening for me, and Streb’s excerpts illustrated perfectly her fascination with movement and time, or, as she said, things that are invisible and “not here, really”;
1. Anna Moschavakis, reading from Karen Weiser’s book of poetry, To Light Out. 2. Reader Rachel Levitsky. 3. Paul Foster Johnson, reading his poetry
What I gleaned from the evening: CLMP is doing a wonderful thing by giving talented, visionary writers from independent presses the exposure they deserve. The work that was showcased last evening was not mainstream by any means, but it was intelligent, thought-provoking, and diverse. Go out to Greenlight Bookstore and check these books out, ASAP. And if you need more of an excuse, June 25 was Save Bookstores Day: so stop procrastinating.
—Julia Jackson writes fiction and is a regular contributor to Electric Dish. She has an MFA from Brooklyn College.