Tag Archives: New Book

INLAND EMPIRE Official Release!

Today marks the official release of George McCormick’s Inland Empire. We extend our good wishes to George for the success of his novel—the first published by Queen’s Ferry Press. We hope readers will recognize in Inland Empire, and the novels that follow, the same commitment to substance and style as evidenced in our short story collections, and continue to support the writers crafting the transportive literary fiction we are still so proud to publish.

Inland Empire
Inland Empire

Inland Empire is available via the Queen’s Ferry Press catalog, on Amazon, and in stores. Booksellers, copies are distributed by Ingram. See the full press release here.

We’re also giving away four copies free until the end of the day! Click on the Goodreads Giveaway widget for more information.

Goodreads Book Giveaway

Inland Empire by George McCormick

Inland Empire

by George McCormick

Giveaway ends July 14, 2015.

See the giveaway details
at Goodreads.

Enter Giveaway

LOVE SLAVES Manuscript

I’d Also Like to Thank….

James Magruder recounts his roll call of personal debt, accumulated during the 19 years in the making of Love Slaves of Helen Hadley Hall, to be published by Queen’s Ferry Press in June 2016.

In early November 1996, I was on a train from Baltimore, where I lived and worked, to New Haven, where I had spent most of the ‘80’s in graduate school, first in the Yale French department and then at the Yale School of Drama. I was making the trip because a musical for which I had written the book, Triumph of Love, was going up at the Yale Repertory Theater, with pre-Broadway hopes.

Avoiding my overdue rewrites for Triumph, I began a novel, one that would celebrate my crazy first year—1983-1984—in the French PhD program, when I lived in a graduate dorm called Helen Hadley Hall with a host of international eggheads, who were whip-smart about everything but the directions that their hearts and groins should follow. I wrote in longhand in a spiral notebook. Bill Clinton had just beat Bob Dole and won his second term in office. It was that long ago.

Broadway came and went the following year, but I kept on with my dorm of fools. I finished a first draft in May 2001. Then titled Love Flight of a Pink Candy Heart (after a Florine Stettheimer painting), the manuscript was 145,000 words long. It had nineteen major characters. It was written mostly in dialogue. Imagine A Confederacy of Dunces (one of my favorite comic novels) without an Ignatius J. Reilly at its center. Imagine a sprawling, mid-career Robert Altman movie, not the glorious Nashville, but one of the lousy ones, like Health or Prêt-à-Porter.

LOVE SLAVES Manuscript
First manuscript page to LOVE SLAVES

That was my baby, and like Ignatius with his journal entries, I thought the work was “particularly fine.” Clearly, absolutely, indubitably, I didn’t know what I was doing.

That was nineteen years ago. When Love Slaves of Helen Hadley Hall is published next May by Queen’s Ferry Press, it will have been two decades in the making, nearly a third of my life. My baby girl has lost nearly 68,000 words and is now the age of a college junior. The academic year she recounts is prehistoric: pre-cell phone, pre-Internet, pre-sushi, pre-cash machine (at least in Connecticut), pre-Fall of the Soviet Union. Madonna was a brand-new artist. The Apple Corporation released its first MacIntosh personal computer. President Ronald Reagan created a holiday in February for Martin Luther King, Jr. That “the gay cancer” was caused by the HIV virus had yet to be discovered.

But enough with the plot points. I was supposed to write about acknowledgments.

I have noticed that with each additional book a fiction writer publishes, his or her acknowledgments page gets shorter. Love Slaves is my third book, and I find that my roll call of personal debt grows longer every time. If I were to acknowledge all the creatures great and small that contributed to the gestation and publication of Love Slaves, it might read longer than Heart of Darkness or In Praise of Folly.

Given the pre-production schedule, I submitted my actual Acknowledgments Page to Queen’s Ferry Press back in April. I was overjoyed with the opportunity, but sad that not everyone could be included. Think of what follows then as the unabridged “Director’s Cut.”

Thanks to the Publications Intern at Center Stage, my former employer, who, in 2000, cheerfully converted my floppy discs (remember those?) from older Word Perfect files to other formats, leaving me to correct tens of thousands of diacritical marks (e.g., a in the first program changed to ^ in the second). Thanks to Center Stage for allowing me to abuse the copy and postage machines when every February I mailed a three-pound envelope with hopes of winning The Peter Taylor Prize. Thanks to Arlo Crawford, über-agent Bill Clegg’s assistant for his kind rejection in 2002 which he said Love Slaves was like “a younger, hipper Robertson Davies,” thereby giving me a handle with which to besiege other agents early in the present milennium. Thanks to the agent who personally called to tell me that a professional manuscript should be double-spaced. I had been using a 1½ space format. (Less paper, less postage, less expense.) Thanks to the Wheaton-Warrenville Wolverines, Class of 1978, whose last names I commandeered for my characters. Thanks to Poets & Writers magazine: every two months I could keep the dream alive via the contest listings in the back pages.

Bill Clegg letter
Letter from Bill Clegg’s assistant saying I was a “younger, hipper Robertson Davies.”

Several post-public reading comments from colonists at the MacDowell Colony and the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts came at just the right moment to be useful. Journalist Charles Graeber (The Good Nurse) said, “Get to the ‘Climb Ev’ry Mountain’ Sing-Off as fast as you can.” Painter Katie Merz said, “This is an historical novel.” Poet Aaron Baker (Mission Work) wondered how I had spelled “cashz” (short for “casual”). A video artist whose name I’ve blocked said, “Wow. That’s like eating an entire turkey in one sitting.”

Finally, I find myself most especially grateful to IVAX Pharmaceuticals, over in Ireland. They sell a product called PROAIR-HPR (aka albuterol sulfate), an aerosol inhalant for people who have occasional breathing problems. Believe me, when I started Love Slaves in 1996, I didn’t have late-onset asthma, or a mortgage, or back hair, or a testy male bladder. Or, most important of all, the proper narrator for the novel.

In the wee morning hours of 11.11.11, I was having trouble sleeping in my bedchamber at the VCCA. I’d been there for nearly a week and felt that my rewrites, to be frank, sucked. I woke up wheezing and panicky and without talent. After a trip to the bathroom, I picked up my inhaler. Albuterol acts as a stimulant. One puff—I might be able to fall back to sleep. Two puffs—forget about it. Breathe or sleep?

I took two hits. I tossed and turned, waiting for my bronchial tubes to re-open while my mind roiled with authorial dissatisfactions. I was a third of the way through what I hoped was my final draft of Love Slaves, but the narrator—my fourth in a decade, mind you—was still giving me trouble. What if I left the VCCA early?—What if I applied to nursing school?—what if X were the narrator?

What if X were the narrator? X had been hiding in plain sight on the very first page of Love Slaves for fourteen years. (I won’t reveal the identity of X because I want you to read the book.)

Eureka! Hallelujah! Holy Christ, what took you so long? You never saw such a happy face at the VCCA breakfast bar. I raced to my studio and went back to page one. It would take me another two years to complete this final rewrite, in a gated marble prison of my own devising on Mutungo Hill in Kampala, Uganda, and then another year to find Erin McKnight at Queens’ Ferry—but those stories are for another day, perhaps.

In the meantime, then, a huge shout-out to IVAX Pharmeuticals, and personal thanks to the reader who can tell me the numerological significance of a triple eleven.


James Magruder
James Magruder

James Magruder is the author of two previous books of fiction, Sugarless and Let Me See It, and the book for the Broadway musical Triumph of Love.

POOL PARTY TRAP LOOP: Now On Sale!

Pool Party Trap Loop
Pool Party Trap Loop

Ben Segal’s collection of stories Pool Party Trap Loop is now available via the Queen’s Ferry Press catalog, and wherever our books are sold!

Gary Lutz (Stories in the Worst Way) says “Pool Party Trap Loop‘s expertly miniaturized fictions of bodily havoc, of messily human collision, introduce Ben Segal as a vital and original voice.”

Ben Segal is the author of 78 Stories (No Record Press), co-author of The Wes Letters (Outpost 19), and co-editor of The Official Catalog of the Library of Potential Literature. His short fiction has been published by Tin House (Online), The CollagistGigantic, Puerto del Sol, and many other magazines and journals. He holds an MFA from UCSD, an MA from the European Graduate School and a BA from Hampshire College, and has been a visiting scholar or writer at the University of Pennsylvania, the Haisyakkei residency in Toride, Japan, and Mustarinda House in eastern Finland. He currently lives in Los Angeles.

 

Queen’s Ferry Press to Publish Kathleen Hughes’ Second Novel

You Can Walk Home to be published by Queen’s Ferry Press in 2017

Plano, TX—May 12, 2015 Queen’s Ferry Press, an independent publisher providing a venue for fine literary fiction, announced it will publish Kathleen Hughes’ novel You Can Walk Home.

“I’m so pleased that my second novel, You Can Walk Home, will join the Queen’s Ferry list,” Hughes said.  “Queen’s Ferry is a press of serious and imaginative writers with a commitment to honed, evocative, and purposeful language.  I feel lucky now to join them.”

You Can Walk Home is the story of a family in a small coastal Rhode Island town.  During a fight on a snowy drive home from school one evening, the mother orders her 16-year-old daughter out of the car to walk the last mile.  This punishment does not produce the desired effect.  Told from the perspective of the younger sister, who is in the car that night and is her sister’s confidante, and from the mother, You Can Walk Home is a story about girls and women, parents and children, faith, and how much we can and cannot hold on to the ones we love. You Can Walk Home will release in June, 2017.

About the Author:

Kathleen Hughes
Kathleen Hughes

Kathleen Hughes is the author of Dear Mrs. Lindbergh (WW Norton 2003).  She has won awards from MTV, the New England and Rhode Island Press Associations, the Sewanee Writer’s Conference, and the Vermont Studio Center.  A graduate of Yale University, the Iowa Writer’s Workshop, and the MGH Institute of Health Professions, Hughes is a pediatric nurse practitioner in Rhode Island, where she lives with her family.

Founded in 2011 as an independent publisher, Queen’s Ferry Press specializes in literary fiction. The press currently releases 6–12 titles a year, many from debut authors, and is the publisher of Shadows of Men, the 2013 recipient of the TIL Steven Turner Award for Best Work of First Fiction. For book updates please contact Kevin Wehmueller, Marketing & Publicity of Queen’s Ferry Press, or visit www.queensferrypress.com.

 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Media Contact: Kevin Wehmueller, Marketing & Publicity

kwehmueller@queensferrypress.com

WHEN THINGS WERE GREEN, A Novel by Sion Dayson, to be Published by Queen’s Ferry Press

Sion Dayson novel to be published by Queen’s Ferry Press in 2017

Plano, TX—May 8, 2015 Queen’s Ferry Press, an independent publisher providing a venue for fine literary fiction, announced it will publish Sion Dayson’s novel When Things Were Green.

“I’m absolutely thrilled to be joining Queen’s Ferry Press. Independent publishers are vital and QFP is such an energetic champion of literary fiction. I am grateful to have found a wonderful home for my first novel,” Dayson said.

When Things Were Green will release in April, 2017.

About the Author:

Sion Dayson
Sion Dayson

Sion Dayson is an American writer living in Paris, France. Her work has appeared in The Writer, The Rumpus, Hunger Mountain, Utne Reader, The Wall Street Journal, Courrier International, Numero Cinq and several anthologies, including Strangers in Paris, among other venues. She’s been a writer-in-residence at the Kerouac House and awarded a grant from the Barbara Deming Memorial Fund. Sion holds an MFA in Fiction from Vermont College of Fine Arts and is at work on her second book.

Founded in 2011 as an independent publisher, Queen’s Ferry Press specializes in literary fiction. The press currently releases 6–12 titles a year, many from debut authors, and is the publisher of Shadows of Men, the 2013 recipient of the TIL Steven Turner Award for Best Work of First Fiction. For book updates please contact Kevin Wehmueller, Marketing & Publicity of Queen’s Ferry Press, or visit www.queensferrypress.com.

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Media Contact: Kevin Wehmueller, Marketing & Publicity

kwehmueller@queensferrypress.com

THE LET GO: Available Now! Jerry Gabriel AMA on Reddit /r/books 5/5 @ 5:00 PM EST

Jerry Gabriel’s second collection of short fiction, The Let Go, is now available where our books are sold! To celebrate, Jerry Gabriel will be answering  your questions tonight on /r/books, starting at 5:00 PM EST, under the handle /u/gg676767.  He is a brave man, and we’ll miss him when he departs this Earth for the internet.

The Let Go, by Jerry Gabriel
The Let Go

About The Let Go:

The people who inhabit Jerry Gabriel’s second collection of stories, The Let Go, strain against their historical moments. A poacher’s daughter, a disgraced vet, an out–of–work temp, a professor, a middle–school basketball ace: these are the Great Let Go in whose embattled existence we feel the impact of war, financial crises, and the many lesser perils that attend life. With equal measures of tenderness, ruthlessness, and humor, Gabriel illuminates an Ohio landscape—its cities, suburbs, and countryside—fraught with economic disparity, its characters facing their dilemmas with grief, with anger, but always exhibiting a surprising fortitude. In these seven taut stories, Gabriel writes hardship as a site of hope.

“The characters in Jerry Gabriel’s The Let Go are the most memorable I’ve read in a very long time. They’re war vets and immigrants, ex–cons and small town middle–schoolers, whose lives intertwine in ways both inevitable and unlikely. As they trap mink, repair roofs, harbor fugitives, and try to figure how the hell to run a factory in the basement, they stand in that place—familiar to all of us—where life shifts imperceptibly and something has to give. They cling hard to integrity and do what they have to do.”
—Ana Maria Spagna, author of Test Ride on the Sunnyland Bus

“Like Alice Munro’s stories, these wonderful stories by Jerry Gabriel often have the scope of novels. They take a particular interest in characters who are just barely hanging on and who fear ’the let go’: the day when they will be laid off. The stories have great urgency and momentum and carry you headlong through to the end. The Let Go is one of the best books of short fiction that I’ve read in the last few years.”
—Charles Baxter, author of There’s Something I Want You to Do

“The Let Go is a knife–twister, sharp, sad, sneakily funny. Jerry Gabriel writes with bracing authenticity and insight, but what’s most impressive is how he’s able to chart and deepen the pathos of these unmoored lives without ever marinating in it or succumbing to easy revelations. A terrific collection.”
—Kevin Moffett, author of The Silent History

“An enormous heart pulses through every page, every line of The Let Go, a collection of stories somehow diverse enough to include poachers, roofers, scientists, dropouts, basketball stars, war vets, office workers, and accidental factory owners, all of them full of longing for something they can’t quite name. With his careful attention to their rich interior lives, it’s obvious Jerry Gabriel loves every one of his characters for exactly who they are, and you will too. The Let Go is a work of great literature.”
—Matt Burgess, author of Uncle Janice

“Jerry Gabriel’s wry, fierce stories are about Ohio in the same way Breece Pancake’s stories are about West Virginia, which is to say they tenderly, vividly evoke a singular merciless landscape while also being deeply engaged with the larger world and the politics and history of the United States. In The Let Go, Gabriel elegantly distills the disorders of our perilous times into marvelously strange fiction that is sometimes surreal, often wickedly funny, and profoundly moving. These stories bring us the news that stays news.”
—Maud Casey, author of The Man Who Walked Away

Jerry Gabriel’s first book of fiction, Drowned Boy, was chosen by Andrea Barrett to win the Mary McCarthy Prize in Short Fiction and was published in 2010 by Sarabande Books. It was a Barnes and Noble “Discover Great New Writers” selection and awarded the 2011 Towson Prize for Literature. His stories have recently appeared in Five Chapters, EPOCH, Big Fiction, Alaska Quarterly Review, and The Missouri Review. He lives in Maryland, where he teaches at St. Mary’s College of Maryland and directs the Chesapeake Writers’ Conference.

Find the collection on our catalog , on Amazon, or be one of five lucky winners to get the collection on Goodreads, and enjoy Jerry Gabriel’s profoundly moving collection of (longish) short fiction!

Goodreads Book Giveaway

The Let Go by Jerry Gabriel

The Let Go

by Jerry Gabriel

Giveaway ends May 31, 2015.

See the giveaway details
at Goodreads.

Enter to Win