Youmans (pronounced like 'yeoman' with an 's' added) is the best-kept secret
among contemporary American writers. --John Wilson, editor, Books and Culture Marly Youmans is a novelist and poet out of sync with the times
but in tune with the ages. --First Things

Friday, December 13, 2013

Lady Word of Mouth, culture-weaver--

Yesterday I thought quite a bit about the work of Lady Word of Mouth. I was forced to ponder how it does little good to be told that one's book was a "close runner-up" for a prize, as it proved yesterday, and to consider what else I can do for three recent books that flew into the world in close succession. Later I spent some hours talking with the newly-made Episcopal deacon, singer-songwriter, and founder of Mons Nubifer Sanctus (aka a dream, the Holy Cloud-Bearing Mountain, a center for contemplative prayer in the Catskills) about how to point arrows toward a new enterprise and raise funds. It's a similar puzzle to what one faces with books--how do you get the word out, how do you support a made thing, how do you make sure the gift you were called to give finds its recipient? An award is a little arrow pointing at the gift made, just as many other things are--an ad, say, or a review or a launch party or re-tweets and shares on a twitter or facebook account where one chats to readers and critics and other writers.

The world is filled with interesting gifts from the people who, curiously enough, are not always all that comfortable with making their own arrows to point to those gifts. Exploring the world of alternatives to the books, music, art, and culture heavily advertised and pushed by major companies and publishers is part of what we do to create the world we would like to see and live in.

All this to say we are back in business with Lady Word of Mouth today. Fly here to see Marjorie Hudson's new edition of Searching for Virginia Dare (Press 53, 2013.) You want to support small publishers and help Marjorie and other writers publishing outside the monoliths of the Big 5 this Advent season? Buy books as presents. Buy yourself a present. Every copy sold tells a publisher that they made the right decision to publish the work. Read, pass judgment, be a passing-the-word minion of Lady Word of Mouth!

2 comments:

  1. Absolutely right: "You want to support small publishers and help Marjorie and other writers publishing outside the monoliths of the Big 5 this Advent season? Buy books as presents. Buy yourself a present. Every copy sold tells a publisher that they made the right decision to publish the work."

    ReplyDelete
  2. Ah, well, I don't expect anybody to listen to me! XD Glad you did.

    ReplyDelete

Alas, I must once again remind large numbers of Chinese salesmen and other worldwide peddlers that if they fall into the Gulf of Spam, they will be eaten by roaming Balrogs. The rest of you, lovers of grace, poetry, and horses (nod to Yeats--you do not have to be fond of horses), feel free to leave fascinating missives and curious arguments.