Friday, 24 September 2021

Launching Family Frames


V. Press is very very pleased to announce the publication of Family Frames, a selection of flash fiction by Alison Woodhouse.

Family Frames, the debut flash fiction collection by Alison Woodhouse, is like a treasured album of photographs you’ll want to return to again and again to discover more detail and depth. Each story is exquisitely composed. With vivid and evocative images of place and time, Woodhouse shows the distance, closeness and heartbreak within family relationships. The collection is satisfyingly framed with slightly different versions of the same story, placed at the beginning and the end. The subtle yet powerful variations in the second version emphasise one of the themes of the book – how fierce love can carry a family through anything that life brings.” Jude Higgins

“To quote from one of the titles in this fine collection, ‘home is not a place, but a feeling’. This is a moving exploration of family dynamics and the feelings that home engenders. Myths jostle with memory, siblings grieve together or alone, marriages end, parents disappoint. There is loss and sacrifice, grief and sorrow, but above all, a fierce love that binds families together. Beautiful and poignant.” Damhnait Monaghan

These flash fictions explore the power we possess to shift our relationships by examining our memories, questioning fixed narratives, revealing new perspectives. Family Frames is very raw and very relatable.

ISBN: 978-1-8380488-5-3

48 pages

R.R.P. £7.50

A sample flash fiction from Family Frames can be enjoyed below.

BUY Family Frames NOW using the paypal options below. 

Family Frames (with p&p options)

N.B. Any international customs/duty charges are the buyer's responsibility.

Broken

The sparrow hawk lay on the bracken, its broken wing splayed sideways. It trembled violently when the boy picked it up. 

“Can I keep it?” he asked.

“You can’t save it,” his father said. “Better to leave it. You’ll only be disappointed.”

The boy argued and threatened to cry and looked so like his mother the father couldn’t say no. They took the sparrow hawk back to the house and made a bed for it out of a box lined with straw. The boy put the box in his bedroom. When his father came to say goodnight, the boy asked what should they feed the bird and his father said in the morning they’d dig for worms. 

“How will I keep him happy until then?” the boy asked and his father said the bird did not know what happiness was. 

“See how frightened he is,” the boy said but his father could not look into the sparrow hawk’s black eye. 


Monday, 13 September 2021

Launching To Boldly Go

V. Press is very very proud to announce the publication of To Boldly Go by Martin Zarrop.

“I was astonished by the versatility of these poems, the dizzying ride from early space exploration to a future of AI and artificial meat. Zarrop knows his stuff but wears his knowledge lightly. There is humour here among the surreal and the sci fi. I loved ‘A Quiet Drink’ which opens ‘In space, nobody can hear you fart’ and ‘Wasp–76b' which starts ‘Gene Kelly had it easy. You/ try dancing through liquid metal/ clad in a tank top’. His is a quirky, witty, unique voice and there is an underlying seriousness to these poems which reward reading and rereading.” Carole Bromley

“If you've ever wondered what happened to all the animals that we put into space, they live on and tell their stories in the corners of these poems. This pamphlet examines the tragedy and farce of our world from unusual perspectives and always at a slight distance, whether it’s through the first humans on Mars or a robotic home help. With a dry sense of humour and perfect observation these poems equip us for a future of lab-grown meat and space travel…I hope you’re ready To Boldly Go.” Suzannah Evans

To Boldly Go is very worried out there but very hopeful.

ISBN: 978-1-8380488-6-0

36 pages

R.R.P. £6.50

A sample poem from To Boldly Go can be enjoyed below.

BUY To Boldly Go NOW using the paypal options below.

To Boldly Go (with p&p options)
N.B. Any international customs/duty charges are the buyer's responsibility.

* SPECIAL OFFER *

While stocks last, buy To Boldly Go and Martin Zarrop's pamphlet Making Waves as a 'Zarrop 2-pamphet bundle' for delivery in the UK for just £12.50, including UK delivery.   

BUY 'Zarrop 2-pamphlet Bundle' NOW using the paypal options below. [To Boldly Go is published at the end of Sept 2021/start of Oct 2021, the 'Zarrop 2-pamphlet Bundle' pre-orders are sent out in the week of its publication.]

'Zarrop 2-pamphlet bundle' with delivery options
N.B. Any international customs/duty charges are the buyer's responsibility.

Chocolate

It’s five years since the last delivery
of nuclear fuel, essential metals
we can’t mine, dark chocolate bars
reminding us of home.

The data came to us in holograms
across an airless sea, telling
of the latest viral curse, of infertility
and chaos, martial law.

We’re on our own.
It’s three years since the last goodbye,
the vaccine failures, messages of love
then suddenly – no reason – silence.

We cultivate our gardens, ration breath,
grow seed potatoes, culture meat,
pray the projector doesn’t fail
while cheering The Martian’s safe return.

Last month we climbed Olympus Mons
but dream of Earthrise, egg on toast,
before another mess of spuds.
We miss the chocolate most.
Hear Martin read from his pamphlet live:

Martin will be reading from To Boldly Go as a guest poet at Manchester Poets at Chorlton Library (M21 9PN) at 7.30pm on Friday, 15 October 2021.The event is open to the public and unticketed, although donations of £3 are encouraged.

Monday, 6 September 2021

Launching Set a Crow to Catch a Crow

 

V. Press is very very delighted to announce the publication of Set a Crow to Catch a Crow, a chapbook of flash fiction by Mary-Jane Holmes.

“These are stories that pulse with transformation, visceral, lush, and sound-rich. In Holmes’ lyrically-charged short fictions, worlds tilt, horizons thrum and yearnings come unmoored, and the language pulls us close to the bloodstream of her characters, feeling for their pressure-points, their broken wings. Their land and homescapes leap to life around them, set alight by breath-catching images that bind us into the textures and electrons of each scene, skin and earth, creek, board and bone. Each brief diorama in this volume delivers us a ‘quivering glint’ of characters caught in slipstream instants, lingering on the verge of fission, or hauled into ‘dark runnels of the heart’ where currents of longing and threat inescapably converge. Holmes’ writing rubs the fibres of life between our fingers, so we feel its restlessness and wonder.” Tracey Slaughter 

“The stories that fill Mary-Jane Holmes’ Set a Crow to Catch a Crow are perfect, precise, highly burnished narrative shards that describe a moment in time but imply both what came before this moment and very likely may come after. It might only be a grain you are offered but you get a whole world. It is only writing of a very high order can pull off the feat that is pulled off here.” Carlo Gébler 

Set a Crow to Catch a Crow is very textured and very liminal. 

ISBN: 978-1-8380488-4-6
36 pages
R.R.P. £6.50

A sample flash fiction from Set a Crow to Catch a Crow can be enjoyed below.

BUY Set a Crow to Catch a Crow NOW using the paypal options below.

Set a Crow to Catch a Crow (with p&p options)

N.B. Any international customs/duty charges are the buyer's responsibility.

Dispatch

Eithne was spiking mole runs with hawthorn stakes when the postman arrived with a package.
    “Addressed to Eros,” he said, aiming the scanner at the barcode.
    “Like the god?” she asked, watching the wink of the laser’s red eye.
    The postman shrugged. 
    “Only me here now, Tom.” 
    They both looked at the house, its cracked gutters, the bluebottle carcasses lining the windowsills.
    “I can return it to the depot,” Tom said, as a ripple of soil erupted by the back tyre of his van. A pink snout sniffed the air, then disappeared.
    She took the box. No weight to it or return address, no rattle or slide of contents when shook.
    Back in the pantry, she put it between the Oxo cubes and baking soda, the only place in the building dry and vermin-free.
    She picked up the cuttings again, crouched by the fresh mound of earth. She chose a stem with the thickest thorns, noticing then the buds still intact, the rose-flush of the petals just showing. She ran her index finger over them, smooth as fur. She went back to the pantry, picked out a pickle jar, filled it with water, dusted the windowsill and set the stems on the ledge. The water caught the pale flash of spring sunlight. Time I spruced the place up a bit, she thought, pulling each stake from where she’d placed it that morning, scanning the road for a quivering glint of a vehicle, hope lighting the dark runnels of her heart. 


Thursday, 24 June 2021

National Flash Fiction Day & Summer Reading Special Offers


V. Press is delighted to share a new buy one, get one free special offer to help readers celebrate National Flash Fiction Day on June 26, 2021 and stock up on their summer reading!

Order Three Men on the Edge by Michael Loveday (for U.K delivery only) direct from us before the end of July 2021, and we will also send you a free copy of a narrative in poetry, A Bluebottle in Late October by John Wheway.*

Order any of the print edition fiction pamphlets/chapbooks (typically titles with monochrome covers) from our online Bookshop (for U.K. delivery only) by the end of July 2021 and we will send you a free copy of one of our narrative poetry pamphlets (Scare Stories by David Clarke, Checkout by Kathy Gee or Winter with Eva by Elaine Baker). *

If any readers would prefer a copy of one of Sarah Leavesley's pocket novella Kaleidoscope or Always Another Twist as their free title, please email Sarah on lifeislikeacherrytreeATyahooDOTcom (within 24 hours of purchase) with a copy of the paypal receipt for a valid V. Press order.*

* These offers apply to U.K. delivery of print fiction orders only and are only valid until the end of July 2021.

NEW FLASH FICTION

We're delighted to reveal the authors and titles of the new flash fiction chapbooks taken on from the submissions window earlier this year.

V. Press's 2021 flash fiction titles will be Set a Crow to Catch a Crow by Mary-Jane Holmes and a longer chapbook, Family Frames, by Alison Woodhouse.

Editor Sarah Leavesley is already very very excited to share both these chapbooks with readers soon!

Meantime, here's an introduction to both authors.

Photo by NB-Design
MARY-JANE HOLMES' work features in Magma, Mslexia, The Lonely Crowd, Prole, The Journal of Compressed Creative Arts, Barren, Spelk, Cabinet of Heed, Firewords, Flashback Fiction, Fictive Dream, Best Small Fictions 2014/16/18/20 and Best Microfictions 2020. She has won the Bath Novella-in-Flash Prize 2020, Reflex Fiction and Mslexia Flash Prize. Her novella is Don’t Tell the Bees (Ad Hoc Fiction). She has a Creative Writing MA (Distinction) from Kellogg College, Oxford, and is studying for a PhD, funded by the UK Arts and Humanities Research Council, in poetry and translation at Newcastle University.



ALISON WOODHOUSE's short fiction has been widely published and anthologised, including In the Kitchen (Dahlia Press), With One Eye on the Cows (Bath Flash Fiction), Beguiled by a Wild Thing (Reflex Press) and Life on the Margins (Scottish Arts Trust Story Awards). She has won and been placed in many competitions, including HISSAC (flash & short story), Hastings, NFFD micro, Flash 500, Biffy50, Farnham and Limnisa. Her debut novella is The House on the Corner (AdHoc Fiction, 2020). She has an MA (Distinction) in Creative Writing from Bath Spa University, teaches Creative Writing and is on the Bath Short Story Award team.


REVIEWS

Something so wild and new in this feeling

“Carrie Etter nails it when she mentions Sarah Doyle’s ‘felicities of phrasing, musicality and ideas.’ Collaging other writings can feel haphazard and awkward or too forced but this is never the case in this pamphlet which feels like both a collaboration and translation. […] Sarah Doyle’s re-imaginings are astoundingly successful and I thoroughly recommend this pamphlet.”
Pam ThompsonLondon Grip, full review here

For a sample poem, more information or to order a copy of Something so wild and new in this feeling, please click here.



NOW AVAILABLE FOR PRE-ORDER

“Re-imagining the research of Laing and Esterson, Alex Reed’s multi-vocal knots, tangles, fankles asks important questions about sanity, madness and the family in a time before the digital became part of the story. This story revolves around Hazel, a young working class girl with the odds stacked against her, and it is both everyday and appalling. A shifting constellation of voices, overheard from behind closed doors, animates an insightful and sensitive collection of poems to think, learn and feel with. Carefully choreographed, all the protagonists earn our sympathy. They hold up a mirror to the human predicament – in black and white, compelling and filmic, concealing as much as they reveal, getting under your skin and staying with you long after reading the last page.” Linda France

“Alex Reed’s debut poetry collection knots, tangles, fankles tells the powerful, heart-breaking story of Hazel, sixteen years old and diagnosed as schizophrenic. Demonstrating a deft, versatile, and compassionate hand, Reed unveils Hazel’s true plight, not only through the surreal imagery of her thoughts, but also through the voices of those both hindering and healing her: from alarmed and hyper-protective parents, to institutionalised hospital staff, to the grounding, reassuring, real-life Dr Aaron Esterson, who along with R. D. Laing sought to uncover the source of mental illness in families using unconventional theories and methods. Though this is Hazel’s journey, each of Reed’s characters is undergoing their own personal struggle and anguish. In a setting similar to Ken Kesey’s One Flew over the Cuckoo’s Nest and based on true cases, Esterson enables Hazel ‘but for the first time to hear [her] own voice’. It speaks to Reed’s ability as a poet that such a moment is so keenly felt and quietly celebrated by the reader, especially in the light of what follows.” Charles G Lauder Jr

Knots, tangles, fankles is a very poignant and very penetrating poetic sequence in multiple voices.

ISBN: 978-1-8380488-3-9

84 pages

R.R.P. £10.99

A sample poem from the collection can be found below.

PRE-ORDER knots, tangles, fankles NOW using the paypal options below. [Knots, tangles, fankles is published in October 2021, pre-orders are sent out in the week of publication.]

knots, tangles, fankles (including P&P)

N.B. Any international customs/duty charges are the buyer's responsibility.

woodentop

clackety-clack     rattity-tat
fast as my clockwork legs can take me

past the room where the nurses drink tea
a voice on the telly is talking about me

this is a story about the woodentops
mummy & daddy woodentop

their woodentop girl whose name was hazel
& the biggest spotty dog you ever did see

one day daddy came home for his dinner
mummy was busy in the kitchen

little hazel was nowhere to be seen
that girl was always disappearing

mummy woodentop said to daddy woodentop
the girl’s not right, we’ll have her mended

let’s call for the woodentop doctor
he’ll saw her head open, hack out the rot

paint her fresh eyes & a pretty red mouth
fix her with glue just like new

clackety-clack     rattity-tat
down the corridor to meet the doctor

but dr esterson didn’t have a saw
never did much, just sat in his room

smiled when she came through the door
then lit up his pipe & winked as he asked

did you ever wish to be real
not made of wood?


Also available from V. Press: These nights at home by Alex Reed, with photos by Keren Banning.

Friday, 23 April 2021

Saboteur Awards, Special Offers & More!

SABOTEUR AWARD SUCCESSES



V Press is very very delighted to have a title shortlisted and another win a Special Mention in this year's Saboteur Award for Best Poetry Pamphlet.

Something so wild and new in this feeling by Sarah Doyle, which was only published last month, has a Special Mention in this year’s Saboteur Award for Best Poetry Pamphlet.

Meanwhile, Katy Wareham Morris’s V. Press pamphlet Making Tracks has been shortlisted for this year’s Saboteur Award for Best Poetry Pamphlet and is one of 4 titles now in the running for the award.

The shortlists for all the categories can be found here - featuring a wide range of fabulous literature and spoken word in many forms.

Voting for the next stage of the award - to decide the winners from these shortlists - is open from noon on Wednesday, 21 April 2021 until noon on Wednesday, 5 May 2021.

Readers' and supporters' votes are more important now than ever!!! 

So, please do go across to the form HERE and register your vote for Making Tracks, as well as supporting your favourites in the other categories!


REVIEWS

Something so wild and new in this feeling

"Sarah Doyle has mined the prose of Dorothy’s journals to create twenty two collage poems, skilfully re-presenting selected extracts from the journals in a wide range of forms." 
Annie Fisher, OPOI, Sphinx, full review here.

"The title poem of Sarah Doyle’s audacious and brilliantly conceived new collection says it all. Reading these collage poems, drawn from Dorothy Wordsworth’s journals, there’s something absolutely remarkable about seeing her luminous words for the first time presented as poetry.

"Using cut-up techniques, elements of found poetry, and applying her own sensibilities as an unusually accomplished poet herself, Sarah has given us these words afresh. [...] Sarah has crafted individual pieces that catch the light in new and unexpected ways."   
Christopher James, full review here.

An interview with Sarah about the writing of Something so wild and new in this feeling can be found on WriteOutLoud here.

Something so wild and new in this feeling has been so popular that just a month after publication we've had to order a new print run! For more information, a sample poem or to order Something so wild and new in this feeling before this print run also sells out, please click here.

Blue Dot Aubade


"This pamphlet reminds us of the spectacular nature of the universe. Miranda Lynn Barnes uses that context of vastness together with astrophysical terms and gemstones to explore personal relationships, and her work brims with colour."
Sue Wallace-Shaddad, OPOI, Sphinx, full review here.

For more information, a sample poem or to order Blue Dot Aubade, please click here.



A Woven Rope


'“A Woven Rope” is a lyrical exploration of maternal lineage through transitional roles of daughter becoming mother, mother becoming granddaughter and the potential for the line to continue through the new daughter. Jenna Plewes’ attention to details, whether marks that create a watercolour, phrases used by a mother realising she’s quoting her own mother, the tension in a high wire, let the reader admire the intricacy and feel their deceptive strength.'
Emma Lee, full review here

For more information, a sample poem or to order A Woven Rope, please click here.


FORTHCOMING & POETRYFILM

Later this year, we have Alex Reed's much-anticipated debut full collection knots, tangles, fankles scheduled for publication.

In the run-up to this, V. Press is delighted to share a poetry film of one of Alex's poems from his collaborative pamphlet with photographer Keren Banning, These nights at home. The poetry film, which features the poem set to music and new images by Keren Banning, can be enjoyed below.

For information about the pamphlet, a different sample poem or to order a copy of These nights at home, please click here.

 


SPRING/EASTER BUNDLES *

There's just a week left to snap up one of our Spring/Easter pamphlet bundles offers. V. Press has three double-pamphlet bundle offers available from now until the end of April 2021.

In and out of this world bundle: Blue Dot Aubade and Hierarchy of Needs for £11.99 including postage and packing for U.K. delivery

Blue Dot Aubade

"I don’t think poems need to teach anything but nevertheless there's much to learn about the cosmos, the spirit, matter, and what matters here. The best part is that the lessons are delivered by a high-energy beam of surprising, hyper-attentive language.[..]" Simon Barraclough

"[...] At times playful, at times poignant, these intelligent poems illuminate our environment in the broadest sense: they give us a new view of our universe and our relationship to it. An engaging, original debut." V. Press Guest Editor Carrie Etter

More on Blue Dot Aubade and a sample poem can be found here.


Hierarchy of Needs

"This pamphlet is a reminder of the extraordinary paradoxes and dualities cultivated between the shaky coexistence of the natural world within the Anthropocene. [...]" Katy Wareham Morris

"We do not exist without nature, though more and more these days, we seem to be expected to. In this book, Abraham Maslow’s hierarchy of needs theory is used as a narrative to consider the entwining of both nature’s and our own human needs. [...]" Jane Burn

More on Hierarchy of Needs and a sample poem can be found here.


Blue Dot Aubade & Hierarchy of Needs bundle (with delivery options)


Community bundle: Winter with Eva and Checkout for £11.99 including postage and packing for U.K. delivery

Winter with Eva

"This is a poignant but tough love story told against the backdrop of Brexit-era England. Eva is Romanian, a free spirit with a beautiful soul navigating the ignorance and hatred of her adopted country. [...] So what begins as a love story evolves to encompass a greater theme – these poems speak eloquently of the way we live now." Tamar Yoseloff

"Elaine Baker writes so beautifully about love: macrocosmic passion and domestic comfort are drawn with sharp, sensual tenderness. But Winter with Eva is also a timely sociopolitical exploration and a gripping page-turner of a pamphlet, one to read carefully yet compulsively in a single sitting." Rachel Piercey

More on Winter with Eva and a sample poem can be found here.

Checkout

"Checkout is a sequence of character portraits and vignettes based on the ephemeral characters that cross a corner shop’s bell-chiming threshold. [...] This is a bold and brave collection from the distinctive voice of Kathy Gee."  Rhian Edwards

"In a time where high street shops are declining or under threat, Checkout is a timely ode, set in Middle England with a ‘cadenced heart,/ alert to daily rhythms, oiled/ by traffic, chips and friends.’" Roy Mcfarlane

More on Checkout and a sample poem can be found here.


Winter with Eva & Checkout bundle (with delivery options)


Survival bundle: art brut and Scare Stories for £11.99 including postage and packing for U.K. delivery  

art brut

"The poems in David O’Hanlon’s first collection are ‘epiphanies of sun’ which shine a light on the poet’s experiences of psychiatric illness; to read them is to experience serial insights into a much overlooked and frequently taboo aspect of the human condition. [...] David O’Hanlon shows us that while the past can have a powerful hold over us, beauty, truth and poetry can emerge from the depths of anguish and despair. An astonishing debut." Fergus McGonigal

"If David O'Hanlon had written this sentence, you'd have shed a tear by now." Jenni Pascoe, JibbaJabba

More on art brut and a sample poem can be found here.


Scare Stories


"The poems in Scare Stories offer us exactly that: a series of richly populated narratives that show the contemporary moment as a grotesque and fearful nightmare. This is a world of war and refugees, high politics and helicopters, sex and suffering as entertainment. Somewhere at the root of things is money. It’s all delivered in sharp quatrains whose flamboyant rhyming makes it more brutal, not less. [..]" Tony Williams

"David Clarke conjures up post-apocalyptic visions that are uncomfortably close to our present. All of humanity is played out here, from gamers to generals, the whole bitingly observed. Scare Stories is a frightening mirror, but it’s also compelling and hypnotic, I dare you to look away." Claire Trévien

More on Scare Stories and a sample poem can be found here.

art brut & Scare Stories bundle (with delivery options)

* Offers intended for U.K. delivery only and valid until the end of 30 April 2021 only.


SUBMISSIONS

The quality and number of submissions received during this year's flash fiction chapbook submissions window has been incredible, making decisions trickier than ever.

Sarah Leavesley has now completed the first round of reading, with eight submissions longlisted for consideration of the full manuscripts. 

The next stage of the process will be an even harder one, whittling this down to just one or two titles for publication with V. Press this year. (Some shortlisted authors may however be invited to stage in touch about the possibility of publishing their manuscript at a later date.)

Sarah would like to thank everyone who submitted during this year's window for the enjoyable reading and their interest in V. Press.

Wednesday, 14 April 2021

Launching May We All Be Artefacts

V. Press is very very delighted to announce the publication of May We All Be Artefacts by Chloe Hanks.

“Chloe Hanks’ melodic writing style rocks the reader into a dream-like state, with hauntingly beautiful scenes of autumnal skies and ghostly ballets. May We All Be Artefacts is a landscape of glorious imagery, transporting the reader to magical realities before bringing the point home with heartbreaking poignancy. This is a collection for the poets, for the lovers and above all for the dreamers.” 

Scarlett Ward Bennet

May We All Be Artefacts is an exciting and urgent new release, from a powerful and distinct voice. Hanks intermittently borrows from existing artwork, striking strong intertextual links with other artists, while also establishing her own perspectives. She borrows from magic, folklore and feminism to create fierce and sometimes disturbing narratives throughout. Neither trite nor forced, Hanks’ use of structure and imagery complement each other, further compounding the dark fairy-tale feel that is infused in these works. This is a debut pamphlet that shouts its arrival, to be consumed in one sitting – then read, and read again – May We All Be Artefacts showcases Hanks’ skillset and potential, marking her out as a compelling new poet.”

Charley Barnes

May We All Be Artefacts is very candid, yet very contemplative.

Winner of the V. Press Prize for Poetry 2020

“This year’s winning portfolio for the V. Press Prize for Poetry is ‘May We All Be Artefacts’ – chosen from the University of Worcester’s shortlist of five for its striking and thought-provoking imagery, focal slants and choice of words. These are poems crafted with a painter’s eye for vivid details and a poet’s ear for language, its sounds and music. The scenes brought to life feel real, relevant and resonant.”

Sarah Leavesley, V. Press editor and prize judge

ISBN: 978-1-8380488-2-2

32 pages, perfect bound

RRP £6.50

A sample poem from May We All Be Artefacts can be found below.

BUY May We All Be Artefacts NOW using the Paypal options below. 
May We All Be Artefacts (including P&P/delivery options)

I Am a Drawing of a Flower

You should see it in me,
the way Sylvia draws the flowers 
even the texture of the paper.
The weight of ink,
the scratch. I am burdened
by this desire to appear
delicate whilst inside
the fires rage on 
you cannot save the art
I am determined to destroy.

I lose myself in the lines
and you fail to notice 
so long as it looks nice.
I filter myself like ground coffee
until the bad stuff is gone;
it’s time to move on.
Like Sylvia when she draws
the flowers  no one knows
what goes on below
where the wildflowers grow


 

Friday, 19 March 2021

New Releases, Spring/Easter Special Offers & Submissions Update

V. Press is delighted to head into Spring with two new poetry titles interwoven with nature and three special Spring/Easter pamphlet bundles.

NEW RELEASES

Jenna Plewes' fifth full collection, A Woven Rope, was published on 18 March 2021. 

“Jenna Plewes has a remarkable gift for infusing every subject with an imagery and a sensuality which are detailed and exact, so that you are convinced of the truthfulness of the emotions expressed. Every poem here contributes to the whole, but for me the outstanding section is the third: nowhere else have I seen the carer’s role exemplified with such clarity. She seems to have unlimited empathy for the subjects of the sequence, and she never tips over into sentimentality. This book, Jenna Plewes’s fifth, is her strongest yet.” John Killick

“Grace and purpose distinguish this collection where poems trace the arc of parenting and explore the manifold challenges of being in the world.  This collection also observes the natural world, its beauties, and its terrors, and is unafraid to confront violence and cruelty.  The writing throughout is unforced, fine-drawn, lyrical, heart-felt.” Penelope Shuttle

A sample poem, more information and ordering for A Woven Rope can be found here.

Sarah Doyle's poetry chapbook, Something so wild and new in this feeling Dorothy Wordsworth’s Journals Reimagined, was released on 2 March 2021.

“In these inventive and adventurous collage poems, Sarah Doyle presents Dorothy Wordsworth’s exuberant feeling for life and language in a fresh fabric of her own making. Sympathetic and insightful, tactful, and imaginative, Doyle’s compositions refract the energies of Dorothy’s writings through the subtle medium of her own sensibility, and the result is at once daring and illuminating.” Gregory Leadbetter
 
“In Something so wild and new in this feeling, Sarah Doyle has taken Dorothy Wordsworth’s journals and developed excerpts into poems, finding felicities of phrasing, musicality, and ideas. Doyle’s skills in pacing, use of the line, and the possibilities of form help us appreciate anew Wordsworth’s habits of thought and close attention to the natural world. With Wordsworth and Doyle, the reader hears the birds singing in the mist.” Carrie Etter

A sample poem, more information and ordering for Something so wild and new in this feeling Dorothy Wordsworth’s Journals Reimagined can be found here.

SPRING/EASTER BUNDLES *

V. Press is delighted to have three double-pamphlet bundle offers available from now until the end of April 2021.

In and out of this world bundle: Blue Dot Aubade and Hierarchy of Needs for £11.99 including postage and packing for U.K. delivery

Blue Dot Aubade

"I don’t think poems need to teach anything but nevertheless there's much to learn about the cosmos, the spirit, matter, and what matters here. The best part is that the lessons are delivered by a high-energy beam of surprising, hyper-attentive language.[..]" Simon Barraclough

"[...] At times playful, at times poignant, these intelligent poems illuminate our environment in the broadest sense: they give us a new view of our universe and our relationship to it. An engaging, original debut." V. Press Guest Editor Carrie Etter

More on Blue Dot Aubade and a sample poem can be found here.


Hierarchy of Needs

"This pamphlet is a reminder of the extraordinary paradoxes and dualities cultivated between the shaky coexistence of the natural world within the Anthropocene. [...]" Katy Wareham Morris

"We do not exist without nature, though more and more these days, we seem to be expected to. In this book, Abraham Maslow’s hierarchy of needs theory is used as a narrative to consider the entwining of both nature’s and our own human needs. [...]" Jane Burn

More on Hierarchy of Needs and a sample poem can be found here.


Blue Dot Aubade & Hierarchy of Needs bundle (with delivery options)


Community bundle: Winter with Eva and Checkout for £11.99 including postage and packing for U.K. delivery

Winter with Eva

"This is a poignant but tough love story told against the backdrop of Brexit-era England. Eva is Romanian, a free spirit with a beautiful soul navigating the ignorance and hatred of her adopted country. [...] So what begins as a love story evolves to encompass a greater theme – these poems speak eloquently of the way we live now." Tamar Yoseloff

"Elaine Baker writes so beautifully about love: macrocosmic passion and domestic comfort are drawn with sharp, sensual tenderness. But Winter with Eva is also a timely sociopolitical exploration and a gripping page-turner of a pamphlet, one to read carefully yet compulsively in a single sitting." Rachel Piercey

More on Winter with Eva and a sample poem can be found here.

Checkout

"Checkout is a sequence of character portraits and vignettes based on the ephemeral characters that cross a corner shop’s bell-chiming threshold. [...] This is a bold and brave collection from the distinctive voice of Kathy Gee."  Rhian Edwards

"In a time where high street shops are declining or under threat, Checkout is a timely ode, set in Middle England with a ‘cadenced heart,/ alert to daily rhythms, oiled/ by traffic, chips and friends.’" Roy Mcfarlane

More on Checkout and a sample poem can be found here.


Winter with Eva & Checkout bundle (with delivery options)


Survival bundle: art brut and Scare Stories for £11.99 including postage and packing for U.K. delivery  

art brut

"The poems in David O’Hanlon’s first collection are ‘epiphanies of sun’ which shine a light on the poet’s experiences of psychiatric illness; to read them is to experience serial insights into a much overlooked and frequently taboo aspect of the human condition. [...] David O’Hanlon shows us that while the past can have a powerful hold over us, beauty, truth and poetry can emerge from the depths of anguish and despair. An astonishing debut." Fergus McGonigal

"If David O'Hanlon had written this sentence, you'd have shed a tear by now." Jenni Pascoe, JibbaJabba

More on art brut and a sample poem can be found here.


Scare Stories


"The poems in Scare Stories offer us exactly that: a series of richly populated narratives that show the contemporary moment as a grotesque and fearful nightmare. This is a world of war and refugees, high politics and helicopters, sex and suffering as entertainment. Somewhere at the root of things is money. It’s all delivered in sharp quatrains whose flamboyant rhyming makes it more brutal, not less. [..]" Tony Williams

"David Clarke conjures up post-apocalyptic visions that are uncomfortably close to our present. All of humanity is played out here, from gamers to generals, the whole bitingly observed. Scare Stories is a frightening mirror, but it’s also compelling and hypnotic, I dare you to look away." Claire Trévien

More on Scare Stories and a sample poem can be found here.

art brut & Scare Stories bundle (with delivery options)

* Offers intended for U.K. delivery only and valid until the end of 30 April 2021 only.

SUBMISSIONS

V. Press editor Sarah Leavesley has been bowled over by the quality and range of the flash fiction submissions received during the February/March 2021 submissions window.

A big thank you to everyone who shared the call-out and to all those who have responded.

She is currently enjoying reading your submissions, while anticipating some very very difficult decisions ahead!

NEW REVIEWS

"Dilating and contracting like a beating heart, Wareham Morris’s dizzying perspectives are in themselves a commentary on the developers’ promotional blurb about “putting the heart back into/Longbridge”."
Stella BackhouseHere Comes Everyone, full review here

For more information, a sample poem and to order Making Tracks by Katy Wareham Morris, please click here.


Thursday, 18 March 2021

Launching A Woven Rope

V. Press is very very delighted to announce the publication of A Woven Rope, a poetry collection by Jenna Plewes.

“Jenna Plewes has a remarkable gift for infusing every subject with an imagery and a sensuality which are detailed and exact, so that you are convinced of the truthfulness of the emotions expressed. Every poem here contributes to the whole, but for me the outstanding section is the third: nowhere else have I seen the carer’s role exemplified with such clarity. She seems to have unlimited empathy for the subjects of the sequence, and she never tips over into sentimentality. This book, Jenna Plewes’s fifth, is her strongest yet.” John Killick

“Grace and purpose distinguish this collection where poems trace the arc of parenting and explore the manifold challenges of being in the world.  This collection also observes the natural world, its beauties, and its terrors, and is unafraid to confront violence and cruelty.  The writing throughout is unforced, fine-drawn, lyrical, heart-felt.” Penelope Shuttle

A Woven Rope is very searching and very forgiving.

ISBN: 978-1-9161096-6-7
60 pages
R.R.P. £10.99

A sample poem can be enjoyed below.

BUY A Woven Rope NOW using the paypal options below.


A Woven Rope (including P&P)

Orphaned

The road is reeling him in
mile after mile after mile,
pulling him through dark waters.

Needlefish aim for his eyes,
shoal after shoal hit the glass;
he stares ahead, unblinking,
feels the line tighten, then slacken,
the hook deep in his gut holds. 
He lets the night stream past,

conjures her voice, smell of her skin, 
paper-thin feel of her fingers,  
replays their wordless conversation.    

Wipers click a mantra in his head;
the tug and tear of severing
is still to come.

Tuesday, 2 March 2021

Launching Something so wild and new in this feeling

 
V. Press is very very delighted to announce the publication of Something so wild and new in this feeling  by Sarah Doyle.

“In these inventive and adventurous collage poems, Sarah Doyle presents Dorothy Wordsworth’s exuberant feeling for life and language in a fresh fabric of her own making. Sympathetic and insightful, tactful, and imaginative, Doyle’s compositions refract the energies of Dorothy’s writings through the subtle medium of her own sensibility, and the result is at once daring and illuminating.”

Gregory Leadbetter
 
“In Something so wild and new in this feeling, Sarah Doyle has taken Dorothy Wordsworth’s journals and developed excerpts into poems, finding felicities of phrasing, musicality, and ideas. Doyle’s skills in pacing, use of the line, and the possibilities of form help us appreciate anew Wordsworth’s habits of thought and close attention to the natural world. With Wordsworth and Doyle, the reader hears the birds singing in the mist.”

Carrie Etter
 
Something so wild and new in this feeling is very composite and very metamorphic. 

ISBN: 978-1-8380488-1-5

36 pages

R.R.P. £6.50

A sample poem from the pamphlet can be found below.

BUY Something so wild and new in this feeling NOW using the Paypal options below.
Something so wild and new in this feeling (with p&p options)

All the Heavens

Venus first showing herself between the struggling
clouds; afterwards Jupiter appeared. The crescent 
moon, Jupiter, and Venus. Jupiter was very glorious,
and one large star hung over the corner of the hills.

Many stars were out. The clouds were moveless,
and the sky soft purple, the lake of Rydale calm,
Jupiter behind. Jupiter at least we call him –
we always call the largest star Jupiter.

The moon was a good height above the mountains.
She seemed far distant in the sky. There were two
stars beside her, that twinkled in and out, and seemed
almost like butterflies in motion and lightness.

Three solitary stars in the middle of the blue vault,
one or two on the points of the high hills. I had 
time to look at the moon while I was thinking my
own thoughts. The moon travelled through the clouds.

The evening star and the glory of the sky: the reflections
in the water were more beautiful than the sky itself,
brighter than precious stones, for ever melting away.
The evening star sunk down, colours faded away.

Jupiter over the hilltops, the only star, like a sun,
flashed out at intervals from behind a black cloud.
The moon appearing now half veiled, the stars
sometimes hiding themselves behind greying clouds.

A very bright moonlight night. Venus almost like 
another moon, lost to us long before she goes 
down the large white sea. The horned moon was set.
A beautiful evening, very starry, the horned moon.

The moon shone like herrings in the water, a silver
boat. The moon had the old moon in her arms
in a black-blue vault. She sailed along, followed
by multitudes of stars, small, and bright, and sharp.

A very mild moonlight night. Glow-worms everywhere.
Attended by Jupiter and Venus in their palest hues,
the crescent moon, a silvery line, a thready bow.
The moonlight lay upon the hills like snow.

Thursday, 18 February 2021

Open Submission Window

V. Press is delighted to announce that we will be open to submissions for flash fiction chapbooks from Friday, 19 February 2021 until Sunday, 7 March 2021.

Full details of how to submit can be found here. Please make sure you take the time to read and follow these guidelines.

This year, for the first time, V. Press is open to submissions from authors based outside of the U.K. Authors based outside of the U.K. should read further details about this below, and make sure to follow the extra submission guidelines in addition to the standard guidelines.*

Previously, V. Press flash fiction pamphlets have been published in a saddlestitch (stapled) format. This year, it is likely that our flash fiction chapbooks will move to a perfect bound (spined) format.

We are primarily looking for one or two manuscripts to be published in 2021, but the authors of some shortlisted submissions may be invited to keep in touch with V. Press about the possibility of publication at a later date.

V. Press looks forward to receiving your submissions!


* For internationally based authors

Historically, V. Press has not published authors based outside of the U.K. because of the practical logistics and costs involved with selling/posting printed books overseas. If we were to take on an internationally based author in this submissions window, we anticipate that it would be for a short print run, with an accompanying eBook version.

In addition to the usual submission guidelines, international authors should include details of how many author-rate copies they would be purchasing (so that they can sell from their stock in the country where they live). They should also detail how they would support marketing the title to both audiences where they live and in the U.K. (This additional information should be no more than an A4 page long and included before the front page of their submission document.)