TNBBC is a proud funder and promoter of many amazing small press kickstarter projects. We try to do everything we can to help spread the word about the incredible, innovative, and passionate underdogs of the literary community. We want to see these small press and self published ideas become reality and we love knowing that we played a part, no matter how small, in getting great new literature out into the world and into your hands.
This time, we've joined forces with Cobalt Press - a brand new publishing company that is growing up out of the fabulous Cobalt Review. Their kickstarter project, which terminates Monday, will fund their first release FOUR FATHERS, a collection of fatherly essays and stories.
TNBBC partnered with Cobalt Press's publisher, Andrew Keating, and the authors of FOUR FATHERS - Tom Williams, BL Pawelek, Ben Tanzer, and Dave Housely - to bring you a four part cyclical interview series, in which the authors interview themselves, to help you get to know them a little better. (and perhaps fall in love with the project, which is still a few hundred shy of its funding goal...)
To kick it all off, here's an introduction to Cobalt Press and the Kickstarter project, from the publisher himself:
There are few subjects richer than fatherhood. I won’t lie, the first time I heard someone use the phrase fatherhood fiction or dick-lit (it was Greg Olear, a couple years ago when Fathermucker was happening), I snorted a little bit. This, of course, is the reaction of a non-father, of a son who admittedly believes that being a dad isn’t all that complicated. Then I read this manuscript. I had no idea what I was getting myself into, other than that I knew two of the authors pretty well and loved their stuff. So I read, and kept reading, and I laughed, and I felt my chest tighten with anxiety, and I might have even cried. How wrong I was.
Four Fathers, and each of its authors, delivers fatherhood in a multitude of thought-provoking, heartfelt ways: from Tom Williams’ pair of long short stories which define a man by who he is as a son in relation to his father, and who he is as a father in relation to his son; to BL Pawelek’s poetry, dedicated to his daughter, Abbey Road. Then you have Ben Tanzer's flash fiction pieces, which all seem to reflect up on the idea of "I'm a dad…what the heck do I do now?" and Dave Housley's novella begging the Osbornesque question "What the f*** is a 'Bieber?'" There are moments of absolute sweetness, and moments of perversity. There are points where you’ll want to laugh out loud, but you’ll stop once you realize you’re only laughing at yourself, your own fears, your own misgivings about what it means to be a dad.
The idea for this book was hatched by its authors at the 2012 AWP conference, and by the same event in 2013, they had put the manuscript in my hands and we were signing the contract. While the works by the individual authors may not seem directly linked in anything other than the general exploration of fatherhood, the connections between the pieces run much, much deeper. The interview series you are about to read, kindly coordinated by Lori Hettler of The Next Best Book Blog, is a great example of how these authors work together, despite living hundreds of miles apart. They clearly speak the same language, and they are so clearly dads.
Cobalt Press is honored to have the opportunity to publish Four Fathers as our first full-length book, and we are grateful to all who have helped us to get it off the ground. There has been a generous outpouring of support from the community through our Kickstarter campaign (www.kickstarter.com/projects/cobaltpress/cobalt-press-start-up-where-you-should-be) and we still have a few days left to reach our initial fundraising goal of $2000, which will fund the launch of Cobalt Press, and the publication of this fine book. Please, if you have a moment, visit the campaign and pledge to help us put great books out into the world.
Andrew KeatingPublisher, Cobalt Press