Green is turning, turning, turning

From the editor at small, or at large, depending on the day.

One thing people do say is that Deerbrook books are good-looking, well designed, that I am doing a great thing, and words like these do not fall on deaf ears.

Actually I am excited about new books in the works for the coming season and for next year. It may sound like what people want to hear but actually it is true. New books of poetry will come out this fall, and others sometime next year as well.

I’m particularly excited about a book of fiction titled Middle of the Night by HC Hsu, that I might call experimental, for its mixture of fragments and short prose, even pieces of verse. His recent book Love is Sweeter, which I missed being able to publish but was impressed with reading, is available here, and his other news and samples can be found here:  and  and  and samples will be posted here in the future. He also has a translation of Chinese dissident and 2010 Nobel Peace Prize winner Liu Xiaobo’s official biography coming out in 2015 by Rowman & Littlefield

I am also hoping that another prose writer or two will be joining the list but it’s too early to tell for sure. Short stories have always been of interest to me and often the ones I want are picked up so quickly it is with hope and effort these will happen. Taking on a new area for a small press like Deerbrook Editions can be accompanied by anxiety, for the usual way books happen is when sales are good or a literary angel donates enough to help launch a book, or several folks decide to make small donations that add up.

Anyone so inclined can go here to our fiscal sponsor.

The New York Review of Books has a review, Deep Into Green by Michael Gorra, on Green, a 239 page book by Michel Pastoureau translated by Jody Gladding. Yesterday I went to my local book store in Yarmouth, Royal River Books, ordered it, and look forward to getting into it because it is the history of the color green and should be fascinating based the other book blue, which I also have. The review speaks about green dyes, green formulations in early painting, its “sumptuous illustrations”, and that ‘the history of a color is “altogether more vast” than the history of painting’. My reading will probably be sporadic.

Where it Goes by Martina Reisz Newberry

Where it Goes features a photograph by Eleanor Bennett

Read a blog entry by Martina Reisz Newberry  , an author that has been going through immense pain. Almost finished with the edits on a 300-plus page book on learning to be a poet by Dawn Potter, a brilliant writer who I would call a polymath, in the sense of “renaissance man”,  don’t even know if it’s correct to say renaissance woman but feel it appropriate because of her energetic dedication to reading literature, writing, music, and teaching, and to learning. I do know that several followers are waiting patiently for The Conversation: Learning to be a Poet to come out.

Sample poems from Where it Goes, and several other books,  can be found here in previous posts and at



The Conversation cov draft

I am grateful that I am seemingly healthy for my age and can do the things I do. In spite of a sense of inadequacy as a publisher, I remain positive and continue to find ways to do more, to do what at times I think I cannot do. Some days it seems, the wading through emails, political parties and organizations wanting money, helpful hints on marketing and SEO, submissions, new info from authors, what to delete and what to save, this is a job for someone else, but there is no one else. The list goes on.

Even whether or not all this is unmentionable; do I admit to any personal struggles when so much of publishing is “image” and we have to live up to our image, content creation; since we are often led to believe what is below a surface is not important, or is it? (Pentimento comes to mind ; the alteration in a painting (shows on the surface) and a book by Lillian Hellman). Outward appearances, the illimitable superficial comparison, even on Facebook there are things we don’t talk about at lunch. Some people can write in such a way as to entertain delicious duality and perhaps reveal some personal secret by only making us think so, and thus it becomes a literary fragment.

Yet I may feel inadequate while also being successful. It is by comparing my work to the work of another press that these ideas can materialize. It is also what the outside world often hands us in criticism.


The Arnolfini Wedding by Jan Van Eyck, circa 1435

Curiously enough, at the Wikipedia page on pentimento is the painting, The Arnolfini Wedding by Jan Van Eyck, pictured in the book review I mention. The green dress; what does it mean, and against the red bed and drapery? Venture to surmise that the green paint might be an expression of wealth and prosperity as well as good luck. Green paint was hard to make. Malachite was favored but often turned black and was very expensive. Studying this painting’s reproduction I noticed there was little yellow in it. A painting instructor once told me that a painting with a lot of green had to have some yellow in it to balance out. This one does not seem to suffer for the seeming lack of yellow. Could it be the red in its hue somehow offers up yellow in some Albers visual play?

I ask questions not for answers but for more questions. All of these things aside, I guess I am feeling rather in the “pink” today because the air is fresh and sweet, the aromas of late summer are building, cool nights allow me to thoroughly enjoy the warmth of the sun. And I can sit here without any real physical pain and do what I think I might not be able to do.

We gain strength, and courage, and confidence by each experience in which we really stop to look fear in the face… we must do that which we think we cannot. — Eleanor Roosevelt



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