Coyote Mercury

words, birds and whatever else by James Brush

Category: publishing

What Stranger Miracles

what-stranger-miracles

I’m excited to announce the publication of my prose poem chapbook What Stranger Miracles by White Knuckle Press, “publisher of online chapbooks of prose poems.” My sincerest thanks to editors Dale Wisely and Howie Good for agreeing to publish it, and to Dale for his care and attention to the design, which is just wonderful.

You can read What Stranger Miracles free online. I hope you’ll check it out. And be sure to look around at all the other work published by White Knuckle Press.

Highway Sky is Live

highway-skyI’m very happy to announce that my new book Highway Sky is now live.

Highway Sky is a collection of road poems published here on Coyote Mercury and in various fine journals, ‘zines, sites, and anthologies over the past seven years.

As of right now, Highway Sky is available in paperback in the following places: Amazon, my e-storeBarnes & Noble, and probably most anywhere else you can order books. There is also a Kindle edition and a free .pdf edition.

The following poems from the collection were previously published. Where there are working links, they can be read online. My thanks to the editors of the following journals for publishing these…

“Sonnet Found in a Road Atlas” Verbatim Found Poetry (Jun 2015)

“a hundred miles out” tinywords (Apr 2015, Issue 15.1)

“All the Way” Synchronized Chaos (Mar 2015)

“Three Scenes from the Road” The Lake (Mar 2015)

“windshield rain” A Blackbird Sings: A Book of Short Poems (Woodsmoke Press, Sep 2012)

“if there are angels” feathers (Apr 2012)

“North Through Fog.” Houston Literary Review (Feb 2011)

“Night at the Interstate Diner.” qarrtsiluni (Dec 2010 – The Crowd issue)

“Highway 73 to Port Arthur.” a handful of stones (Jul 2010)

“Deeper into Texas.” America Remembered (Virgogray* Press Chapbook Anthology Jul 2010)

“Miles (Never Once Imagined).” Carcinogenic Poetry (May 2010)

“I-10 Eastbound.” Carcinogenic Poetry (May 2010)

“We Talk of Trains.” ouroboros review (Jul 2009 – No. 3)

“A Texas Highway in Springtime.” Bolts of Silk (May 2009)

And, thanks to The Poetry Storehouse for making “For Gasoline” and “angels” available for creative remix. (Incidentally, all of the individual poems in Highway Sky are licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike-NonCommercial license so if you want to envideo/remix… have at it.)

Many of the poems first appeared here in draft form. You can read those early drafts here. Some are draftier than others, but I offer my sincerest thanks to the many people who commented, critiqued and left feedback on these drafts over the past seven years. It has meant a lot to me.

I hope you’ll check it out and help spread the word. Thank you.

Some Recent Publications

Six October Stones CoverI’m very happy to announce that my micro-chapbook Six October Stones is published by Origami Poems Project.

Like all of Origami Poems Project’s micro-chapbooks, this collection of six short poems woven into a longer poem is a free PDF download that can be folded into a very small chapbook using the instructions found on the site. Check it out!

 

 

Next up, I’m thrilled to share that the Take2 Guide to LOST is now available for download. This is a massive compendium of online writing about the ABC TV Series LOST, and it includes all of my LOST book club blog posts (explained and indexed here) as well as my reflections on “The End.” Yes, I really did read and blog about all the books that appeared on the show, and it’s nice to see all that collected with so much other fine LOST writing. More info here.

 

Finally, I’m proud to have had a poem featured at Autumn Sky Poetry Daily: “Made or Just Happened.” Do check it out if you haven’t already.

And, yes, I’m still putting finishing touches on Highway Sky and The Corner of Ghost & Hope. Things move slow.

Kind Words

It’s nice to know that Michele Cornelius, whose awesome stock photo graces the new cover of A Place Without a Postcard liked the book. Enough to write about it even. Take a few minutes to visit her site and check out her awesome work.

Thanks, Michele!

Postcard Cover Art

postcard2013_cover-kindle-lo-resWhen I made the decision to Kindle-ize and relaunch A Place Without a Postcard, I decided to redo the cover. While looking around Shutterstock, I came across the photo that you see on the book. A UFO flying over the desert is exactly the kind of cover image I was seeking for a book about a photographer who makes fake UFO photos and gets lost in the desert.

This photo led me to try to learn more about the photographer, Michele Cornelius. She lives and works in Alaska, and her photos eloquently capture the beauty of that remote place and her deep concern for its wild spaces.

In addition to selling stock photos, Michele also has a great many of her prints available for purchase, and she has a beautiful photo e-book called A Back Road Traveler’s Alaska. Visit her site, Observations of a Backroad Traveler, and check out her work. It will be time well spent.

Also, if you’re looking for good stock photos, she has a lot more than UFO pictures available on Shutterstock.

E-Booking

Deb Scott over at Stony Moss wrote a nice post about how Birds Nobody Loves looks, works and reads on iPads, Kindles and paper so I figured I’d put something up here by way of explaining how it came to exist in its various forms.

I kicked around the idea of doing Birds Nobody Loves as an e-book but an illustrated book of poetry seemed like it would carry a pretty steep learning curve for a first e-book what with the whole line break issue and that kept me from pursuing it until I read NS’s Dark and Like a Web on my phone (before buying the paperback) and saw how well it worked. I read her blog posts on the subject and learned how she used Dave Bonta’s hanging indent solution in her e-books and so, I decided to give it a try.

I coded the EPUB version of Birds Nobody Loves using eCub. It was surprisingly easy for me considering I’ve spent a lot of time playing with the HTML and CSS on this blog over the years. That was the biggest surprise for me: an e-book is nothing but a series of web pages governed by a CSS file. Who knew?

It wasn’t long before I had an EPUB file that looked great on my phone and that took my breath away when I saw it on a borrowed iPad, which rendered the illustrations beautifully. And, the hanging indents worked too.

Next up was Kindle-izing the thing, which required a conversion to MOBI format. ECub works with Amazon’s Kindlegen to create a MOBI file but when I checked it in Amazon’s Kindle previewer, which lets you see what your book looks like on various Kindle devices, I was horrified to learn that while it looked great on the Fire it looked awful on all the other Kindles. I could “fix” this by removing the hanging indent code, which made it look okay across all devices but the poetry would lose the formatting if the reader made the font too big.

I messed around with the code for the better part of the day and then gave up, figuring I could either ditch the whole hanging indent idea for Kindles or just not release it for Kindle at all. I thought there had to be a way for the book to know what kind of device it was being played on and then serve up the hanging indent CSS if it was being played on a Fire, but how?

And here’s yet another reason why I love the Internet: there’s always someone smarter out there with the same problem I’m working on. That very night, Liz Castro at Pigs, Gourds and Wikis posted an excellent tutorial on how to get hanging indents in a poetry e-book (using the same technique Dave worked out) and how to make them work on ALL Kindle devices by having the book serve CSS geared toward whichever Kindle device was playing the book. It took less than 10 minutes to have the Kindle version working perfectly.

The Nook was another matter. The EPUB file seems to play well on my Dad’s Nook but when I uploaded it to the Nook Store, I found that Barnes & Noble seems to make changes to the file that destroy all the line breaks. Either that or the Nook doesn’t read EPUB like Apple’s products. So, sorry Nook users, I haven’t solved that one yet.

After that it was easy to upload the book to Lulu, the iBookstore and the Kindle Store.

Now, go pay Deb a visit and see what she has to say about it. And then read her blog.

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