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Exciting Happenings at Dzanc Books

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Dzanc Books was formed in September of last year by Steve Gillis and Dan Wickett, the hardest working man in the litblog business. Operating as a non-profit, Dzanc Books is dedicated to publishing not for bottom-line gain, but for literary, educational, and charitable reasons. Oh, and let’s not forget that although the company isn’t trying to make barrels of cash with lurid sell-outs of the latest crime of the week, its authors do get paid.

While I’ve been swamped the last couple of weeks, Dzanc has made several exciting announcements I wanted to tell you about.

First, the organization announced  the first two titles slated for publication in 2008. February of that year will see Yannick Murphy’s collection In a Bear’s Eye hit the shelves. 16 of these gems were published in journals such as The Quarterly, McSweeneys, and StoryQuarterly. The title story will be included in The O’Henry Prize Stories 2007 published by Anchor in May. 

After Murphy’s book is released, Dzanc will follow with Bob, or Man on Boat by Peter Markus in the fall of 2008.

Second, the publishing firm was thrilled to learn that Roy Kesey’s short story Wait was selected for inclusion in The Best American Short Stories 2007, edited by Stephen King. The story was originally published in The Kenyon Review and is contained a collection entitled All Over which Dzanc will release this October.

And finally, if you’re in Atlanta this week, be sure to stop by the The Assocation of Writers & Writing Programs 2007 Annual Conference. Dzanc’s Dan Wickett is appearing on a panel entitled Evolution of a Writer: On Ekeing, Emeriging, and Becoming Established. Scheduled from 9am to 10:15am, the panel also features Matt Roberts, Steven Church, and Adam Braver. Dan has been running the Emerging Writers Network for some time now so he knows all about the difficulties authors face while ekeing and emerging. I don’t know what in the hell this man does for a living, but Dan puts in a Herculean effort in support of good literature. In addition to Dzanc and the EWN website, he’s also a driving force in the The Litblog Co-Op. It doesn’t matter what his religious affiliation is, when it comes to contemporary literature, he’s doing God’s work.

All great things and exciting happenings. And if this seems like a gushy mash note for the guys at Dzanc Books, then I guess it is. All too often we bitch and moan about the state of publishing today. But then we trudge down to the bookstore and stock up on the latest vanilla offerings from the major publishing conglomerations. Dzanc is trying to provide an alternative. And until their books start hitting the shelves, you can always visit their website and make a tax deductible donation.