Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Fighting Back vs. Staying the Same

We live in exciting times . . . but, right now, not in a good way. 

Friday we witnessed the inauguration of a new president, a peaceful transition of power.  That evening, we had a poetry reading here in Tallahassee to engage in the growing creative “resistance” movement.  We put together a limited-edition chapbook featuring poems from each of the five readers (Kaveh Akbar, Sandra Simonds, Michael Rothenberg, Paige Lewis, and Jay Snodgrass).  The money from sales is going to be split between Planned Parenthood and the Southern Poverty Law Center.  We have a few copies left in the store, so get a copy while you can!  (It’s called Poets Fight Back!  A Program Guide.)

Along the same lines is the second chapbook from our very own Scott Sweeney (me).  Actually completed in (and dated for) 2016, it’s entitled stasis and includes one long piece broken into 19 sections, which were carved out of a much larger work.  The half-digest-sized book was formatted using a Seventies-era typewriter.  Each of the 25 copies features a hand-stamped cover.  Comes in a variety of colors!


We surrender,
feel the grey wind
shake loose another storm.

Sun goes into hiding
and we’re huddled
in this target-rich environment.”

Posted by Scott • Permalink

Friday, January 06, 2017

Not Everyone Can Be a Winner

The results are in! 

All of the finalist manuscripts for the 2016/2017 “Season” Open Reading were read by both Ann Dernier and me, and our findings were much the same.  This year’s “winner” is Jennifer Martelli and her awesome chapbook, After Bird.  That will be the first one of the bunch, slated for this Spring.  Following that will be chapbooks by Kolleen Carney and Howie Good, as well as this year’s GBP alumnus finalist (and previous “winner”) Jessie Janeshek!

I’m sorry I couldn’t take more, but four felt like the right number, given our established publishing schedule and special projects (semi-secretly) in the works. 

I want to thank everyone who submitted this year, sending your manuscripts out into the Void.  (Grey Book Press = The Void)

This is going to be a great season.  We’ll announce more details as we set things up.  There are multiple things bubbling, including readings and regional events. 

See you soon!

Posted by Scott • Permalink



We’re ending 2016 with an off-cycle chapbook from Andrew Brenza.  And Then is the kind of poetry that we really like . . . the kind of meditative verse that unfolds slowly.  It’s full of outward yearning and imagery that reflects an inner dialogue, a philosophical tableau.  It’s a single, cohesive piece that is always moving, making it hard to put down.

“through frost- 
furred leaves 
over heels 
in criss- 
cross wind
a widdershins 
of wings 
and brittle birds”

It’s available now on the Titles page.  Order your copy today and it will ship just after the New Year starts.  And act fast . . . this one’s limited to just 50 copies!


Happy Holidays, everyone!

Lots of things going on here (mostly behind the scenes).  First of all, we’ve made it through the chapbook manuscripts for the 2016/2017 season open reading.  We’re going to be notifying “finalists” this weekend, and then starting a second review period . . . with this year’s guest judge, Ann Dernier.  Ann is, of course, the author of the first full-length book of poetry from Grey Book Press, In the Fury, and we’re really excited to be working with her again.  “Winners” will be announced in early January 2017.

We’ve had two chapbook projects in the works for a little while.  The first one—-And Then by Andrew Brenza—-was due to come out this week, but we had a production glitch and THEN our GBP Paypal account was hacked.  The production got ironed out, along with Paypal, but with the Holidays heating up and associated travel, we thought it best to wait until things quiet down to release it.  Look for an announcement on that around December 28.  The second chapbook is actually mine, and will be out in January 2017 . . .

. . . just in time for some protest readings here in Tallahassee, FL.  In the days leading up to the Inauguration, there will be a series of loosely connected events.  The evening of the Inauguration itself, GBP is sponsoring a reading that should be pretty epic.  I have this strange feeling that the press will be doing more politically tilted poetry.  (hint, hint)

Stay tuned for more updates before the New Year.


Hey, everyone.  The open reading period is no longer open!  Let the reading begin!

We HOPE to have finalists a month from now, with decisions on “winners” and whatnot by year’s end.  Oh, and we likely won’t be sending individual notifications of regret, but we’ll be keeping everyone updated as the process moves forward on this website and through social media.

In the meantime, there will be TWO new chapbooks. 

Stay tuned!


The 2016/2017 chapbook season open reading starts in a few days . . . officially midnight (00:00 November 1).  Here are the guidelines.
—One entry per person.  No reading fee.
—Manuscripts will be read as “blindly” as possible, so please take your name off the title page.
—Manuscripts should have between 16 and 24 pages of poems.
—Email submissions to greybookpress (at) gmail (dot) com.  Subject line: “SUBMISSION - [LAST NAME] - [TITLE]”
—If you’ve had a chapbook published by GBP, you’re not excluded this time.  But if there are multiple GBP veterans among the “finalists,” only one will be considered for publication.
—Send submissions until 11:59 p.m. on November 14, 2015.
—Notifications around mid-December.
—There will be at least one “winner” and one “runner up.”  The “winner” will receive an open-ended publication with 25 author copies.  Other accepted manuscripts could be limited editions of 50 (in which case, 15 author copies).

In selecting chapbooks for publication, we usually aim for “range” in making multiple acceptances.  For instance, the favorite/best/most resonant chapbook will be the “winner,” and other selected manuscripts will be . . . different (from the “winning” chapbook and one another). 

We’d thought about doing “categories” for manuscripts as a way get a good mix of styles and backgrounds, like maybe actively soliciting poets of color or poetry on specific subjects/themes.  While we’re not going to formally request submissions to check all the boxes, we’d love to see more POC, more Asian forms, more people from the Southeast.  (GBP isn’t a regional press, but it seems like most people we publish are from far-flung areas of the country [or other countries]). 

If you have any questions not answered/addressed above, let us know at the email listed above.

Good luck!