If you’ve been following along with us, you know that this month we are putting the spotlight on independent publishers. The ones who pick up the talent that gets passed up by the big publishing houses. This week, in honor of our She Writes Press Tour event Wednesday, June 22 at 7PM we are pointing that light at (if you haven’t guessed it already) She Writes Press.
With over a hundred female authors under their belt, completely women-run, She Writes Press is a force to be reckoned with within the publishing world. As an independent publishing company, they have evened the playing field for female authors to publish their works without slipping through the cracks like they would if they went through any of the major publishing houses.
“Kamy [Wicoff] and Brooke [Warner, the founders] envisioned a company where authors would be invited to publish based on the merit of their writing alone. They wanted to found a press for women writers that would be a platform—that could launch their writing careers, and where they could legitimately compete with their traditional counterparts.”
We would specifically like to highlight the ladies that will be visiting us next week to speak about and sign their books on the She Writes Press Tour:
GARINE B. ISASSI – Start With the Backbeat: A Musical Novel:
It is the spring of 1989 in New York City when Jill Dodge, a post-punk rocker from Texas, finally gets her big promotion at Mega Big Records. She is thrust into a race to find a gritty, urban rapper before the Gangsta trend passes their label by. As Jill and her mostly middle-class coworkers search for the next big rap star, they fluctuate between alliances and rivalries, tripping over the stereotypes of race, class, and musical genre. They work to promote their current roster of acts as well as the new rap artist they sign to a contract. It turns out, he may not be what they expected. Full of original lyrics and wit, Start With the Backbeat is a compelling examination of the nuances of class, race, and culture in America which are sometimes ridiculously serious.
NICOLE WAGGONER – Center Ring:
Norah Merrit, a dedicated obstetrician known for her bedside manner and service to Doctors Without Borders, walks into girls’ night out with a confession to make―and what she has to say shakes the group to its core. In the aftermath of Norah’s revelation, each of the women she calls her sister-friends―photojournalist Camille, stay-at-home mom Leila, publicist Ellison, and designer Kate―are left questioning the roads they haven’t taken, and revisiting the vastly different choices they’ve made in life and love. Told in alternating points of view between the five friends, Center Ring is a story about modern women finding balance through action, relationships, and growth in the midst of challenges and change.
CARRIE HIGHLEY – Blue Apple Switchback:
Carrie Highley was always a tomboy―and by the time she turned sixteen, she was wishing she was dancing with the girls instead of the boys at cotillion dances. In her early thirties, while living in West Virginia, she discovered a passion for road biking, finally stopped sequestering her deep feelings for women, and began an ill-fated love affair with a female cycling friend. Then, at thirty-six, she found herself skidding into Asheville, North Carolina, holding on tight to the coattails of her doctor husband and spending her time as a stay-at-home mother of two boys. Moving to North Carolina was Highley’s attempt to reembrace heterosexual married life after her tumultuous time in West Virginia. But in Asheville, she met Charlie, a fellow cyclist twenty-three years her senior, who became her mentor, friend, and father all rolled into one―and as they grew closer, she started unloading her fears into Charlie’s inbox. With Charlie’s support, Highley finally got the courage to do what she’d been waiting her whole life to do: go down the mountain with her hands off the brakes.
JO IVESTER (moderator) – The Outskirts of Hope: A Memoir of the 1960’s Deep South:
In 1967, when Jo Ivester was ten years old, her father transplanted his young family from a suburb of Boston to a small town in the heart of the Mississippi cotton fields, where he became the medical director of a clinic that served the poor population for miles around. But ultimately it was not Ivester’s father but her mother―a stay-at-home mother of four who became a high school English teacher when the family moved to the South―who made the most enduring mark on the town. In The Outskirts of Hope, Ivester uses journals left by her mother, as well as writings of her own, to paint a vivid, moving, and inspiring portrait of her family’s experiences living and working in an all-black town during the height of the civil rights movement.