Every year Knopf celebrates National Poetry Month through its Poem-A-Day program, highlighting an amazing poem every single day throughout the month of April. This year, we had the awesome opportunity to partner with Tumblr to create a Tumblr blog with the specific goal of celebrating poetry. We’re featuring the daily Knopf poem, but we’re also showcasing poetry submissions from the Tumblr community. So check out the Tumblr blog — Celebrate Poetry, and be sure to submit your own poem(s).
Here’s one of the videos, which outlines what the ebook is all about:
Reich is hoping you’ll read the ebook, and then share your ideas for getting #beyondoutrage on Facebook and Twitter. As he points out, “You need to be outraged, but you also need to move beyond outrage, and take action.”
This year, as part of Knopf’s annual Poem-a-Day celebration, we wanted to put together a short collection of poems and offer it up as a low-priced ebook. Deborah Garrison, the poetry editor at Knopf, came up with a fantastic theme (and title) — Poems After Midnight — and selected 13 amazing poems to showcase. The elegant cover was designed by Knopf art director Carol Carson.
Years back before my time, publishers probably would have printed this kind of thing up, made it into a beautiful little collectible. You don’t see much of this anymore, mainly because of cost. The cost to design, copy edit, print, and then distribute. The rise of digital really opens things up, making it more feasible to create projects like this. Of course there are still costs associated with producing an ebook — you still have to design a cover, format the text, and copy edit — but the more noticeable dollar figures associated with printing, distribution and inventory are not a part of the picture.
And I hope to see more of these types of digital projects. Shorter works, offbeat curation, collections and combinations of material that would never, ever get approved as a physical product.
Anyway, here’s the description of the Poems After Midnight ebook:
Most poets are or have been at one time or another members of what Mark Strand here calls “The Midnight Club”: they are insomniacs, or feel most productive in the middle of the night, or, if nothing else, are people whose work requires an openness to the dreams, visions, and scraps of inspired language that may drift across our path in the wee hours. In Poems After Midnight, drawn from Knopf’s Poem-a-Day program (the daily e-mails we’ve sent to our fans every April for the last dozen years or more), we’ve gathered some of the significant nocturnal entries by our poets. Here are poems of love and loss (J. D. McClatchy’s “Little Elegy,” Kevin Young’s “Chorale”), poems under the moon and in hotel rooms (Frank O’Hara’s “Avenue A,” Sharon Olds’s “Sleep Suite”), poems detailing urgent self-examinations and Jewish mourning rituals, or heralding the arrival of a visionary political statement like “They Feed They Lion,” a poem from the early 1970s by poet laureate Philip Levine. Each one carries us on a journey away from the distractions of daytime and into a realm of heightened understanding.
And here are the 13 poems featured:
“A Remedy for Insomnia” by Vera Pavlova
“Avenue A” by Frank O’Hara
“Soul Keeping Company” by Lucie Brock-Broido
“Little Elegy” by J. D. McClatchy
“Sleep Suite” by Sharon Olds
“Self-portrait” by Edward Hirsch
“The Midnight Club” by Mark Strand
“They Feed They Lion” by Philip Levine
“After” by Franz Wright
“Chorale” by Kevin Young
“Greeter of Souls” by Deborah Digges
“Poem to be Read at 3 a.m.” by Donald Justice
“The House was Quiet and the World Was Calm” by Wallace Stevens
Ken Wohlrob of the Random House Publishing Group accepting the award for the Jay-Z/Decoded app, which won the transmedia category.
Ryan Chapman (looking very campaign-trailish), introducing the 7X20X21 speakers at Digital Book World 2012. Speakers included Rachel Fershleiser, Tumblr’s Literary Community Organizer; Ruth Liebmann, Director of Account Marketing at Random House; Emily Gould and Ruth Curry, Founders of Emily Books; and Ronny Golan, Founder and CEO of Bookpulse.
Rachel Fershleiser talks up Tumblr and books as part of the 7X20X21 series.
Ruth Liebmann, Director of Account Marketing at Random House, talks up independent bookstores and booksellers as part of the 7X20X21 series.
Great round-up of links to writers doing interesting stuff online with their fiction.
We recently launched the Digital page on KnopfDoubleday.com. This page allows our publishing group to feature its enhanced ebooks, apps, and ebook collections. I’m really happy with how our page works, especially the way we’re able to showcase screenshots of what the actual ebooks or apps looks like. It was designed and built by the excellent design outfit Being Wicked, who redesigned the overall site last year. Currently featured in the top module is the enhanced ebook of How To Live Safely in a Science Fictional Universe by Charles Yu. I highly recommend checking out that book, either the ebook or the hardcover. It’s a really clever novel.