mugshot monday; or why i dont have an author photo

stacey lynn brown wrote in one of her blog entries:

“An author photo provides an emotional point of connection and entry between author and audience.”

well, my book, which just arrived this weekend (!) does not have an author photo (which is probably good because as evidenced above, i am not so photogenic), but the book itself sure is pretty! hopefully the poems themselves will provide that “emotional point of connection and entry.”

i am so thankful to Tinfish Press and their crew: susan schultz, gaye chan, tiare picard, and the amazing designer for the book: Sumet (Ben) Viwatmanitsakul. besides my objection over the “anti-diva clause” they made me sign, everything went smoothly from contract to proofing to publication. it’s a formally complicated book, but it came out perfectly. and thank you to everyone who pre-ordered a copy. Tinfish should receive their copies soon and hopefully you will get yours soon!

I AM LOOKING FOR REVIEWERS and REVIEW VENUES. if you’d like to review the book, or you edit a journal that might review it, please email me your name/address to csperez06 [at] gmail [dot] com.


the funny thing is that the book arrived the day after i finished editing my second manuscript (titled preterrain). i’m excited that the next book is, er, in the books, and excited to see my first one materialize.


so what did i do the day the book arrived? i wrote a review. no, not of my own book, but of Sun Yung Shin’s SKIRT FULL OF BLACK (from Coffee House Press, 2006).

read other reviews of this book here and here and here and here

i met the author at AWP in NYC in february (she came to the Achiote Press table with lee herrick…now there’s two photogenic poets!) and i told her then i had just begun reviewing her book (thus it was kind of cool to meet her). i am rather embarrassed that it took me so long. part of the delay was that i have the most difficult time reviewing books that feel so close to my own work. books that are completely different are easy because i feel outside the work enough to see it. but i felt very much within Shin’s book, even as i wrote the last paragraph.

one of the aspects i love about SKIRT FULL OF BLACK is it’s use of “collage-and-response”. many peoples obviously do this, but none quite like Shin.

also, my review is the 50th review i’ve written since 2007. so it’s extra special 🙂


speaking of Coffee House Press, i love them. tho i only own victor hernandez cruz’s RED BEANS, elaine equi’s VOICE OVER, and Nick Carbo’s RETURNING A BORROWED TONGUE, there are so many other titles of theirs that i want.

here are their submission guidelines:

Please include a self-addressed, stamped envelope with every submission or we will be unable to respond. Coffee House Press does not accept fax queries, or electronic/disc submission. We prefer to see samples (20-30 pages) with outlines before reviewing entire manuscripts. Our response time on samples is 4-6 weeks. The review process for full length manuscripts currently takes 4-6 months, possibly longer. Manuscripts that seem appropriate for CHP are given several careful readings, and the final decision rests with CHP’s publisher, Allan Kornblum.

how nice: a free, open reading period. but wait, on the top of the submission page it says:

Please Note: We are not currently accepting poetry submissions from new authors.

i don’t know how long that note’s been up, but if i had a dime for every time i read that on a press’ website, i’d have enough money to enter Cider Press Review’s contest.


5 thoughts on “mugshot monday; or why i dont have an author photo

  1. congrats on having the book in hand. good times, dawgs!

    barb and i say that par-tee is in order. (cue the opening strains to bell biv devoe’s poison)

    as for author photo’s, i have a few suggestions to provide that “emotional point of connection and entry”

    i think this displays the dichotomy of being from another culture but still have a desire to provide service and maintain a relationship with the citizens of an adopted land.

    i think this one says: my island is NOT your island.

    just a suggestion.

  2. I think that’s an awesome author photo. It says: “Buy my book m****f****er!”

    And I will.

  3. susan gets the point!

    oscar, word on the party! i’ll backchannel! and thanks for those author photo. tho i can barely see them thru the coffee i just spit/laughed all over my laptop.

    nicholas, so glad you’re back m****f*****er!!!

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