Start Small, Make Mistakes

“This tiny size is a good place to start–with a small desk in your living room and a clear idea of what you want to publish.”

Joe Biel, A People’s Guide to Publishing

My desk is a drawing desk from a high school art room. I picked it up on the side of the road about twelve years ago. One corner of its scratched surface taunts, “EAT ME.” Across the way is an inscription honoring “KEN N DAWN,” may their love endure forever. Small desk, check.

The words "Eat me" in all caps, scratched into the wood veneer of a desktop.
A daily provocation from my work surface

And I do have a clear-ish idea of what I want to publish: zine-sized little companions, how-tos for transformation or staying put (or both at the same time). Voices of ministers (broadly defined) who are making space for other voices. For your voice. Clear idea, check.

I want these voices to sound playful, poetic, practical. One thing I’m looking forward to is putting together a publishing program over time: a mosaic of different voices all showing by example that there are a thousand ways for light to shine through us.

Why books, why pamphlets? (A question I keep asking.) Here’s a few more reasons: I’ve been grateful for the conversations I’ve gotten to have with people I’ve never met, people who have died, people someone else made up. Grateful for the serendipity of finding the right words at the right time–that book in the library, or waiting on my shelf, or given to me by a friend passing through town. I’ve been grateful to sketch my reactions in the margins with my own idiosyncratic pencil notation, which somehow still conveys meaning back to me years later.

I want to publish works that are small enough to fit in your pocket, and that open up vast worlds for you to find belonging, adventure, and rest in. That are pleasant to look at but not too nice to scribble in. That facilitate impossible conversations. Onward.

The words "Ken N Dawn" scratched into the desk surface.
Memento of a lost love