Saturday, August 19, 2017

Open Submissions - Bring Your Love of All Things Small Press

Yeah, ok, the word "hiring" might be a little misleading in this case, because as I'm sure you know, TNBBC is one-hundred-percent a labor of love. We're ad free and we don't take payment for reviews. However, we do love our review contributors to pieces and we can't wait to crush you with our love too!

TNBBC is currently open to submissions for small press book reviews, author interviews, excerpts, and think peices. Because you'd be doing this for gratis, there's no nine-to-five commitment here. No minimum number of reviews or posts you need to fulfill per month. You'll find we're really rather easy going.

So let's talk detail, to help you decide whether TNBBC would be a good home-away-from-home for your stuff:

Book Reviewers:

  • A love and passion for small press and/or self publishing is a must
We're all about promoting the underdog here, and helping our readers find their 'next best book'. We're not about promoting the same ole tired literature as everyone else. That's already being done. That's Zzzzz....

  • Writing skillz. You haz some. 
You don't have to be an English major to write great reviews. Hoity Toity, stuffy reviews are not welcome here. However, we won't accept mediocre or poor writing. So make sure your grammar and spelling is up to snuff. And you know, that you can start a thought and finish it coherently. 'Cause that counts for something. Oh, and if your review style is built primarily around gifs, this is probably not the place for you.

  • Let your personality shine, shine, shine
Do you review genre fiction? We could certainly use some of those. Bizarro, literary crime noir, shock horror, experimental poetry, post-apoc sci-fi, non-fiction... if you're reading it, we'd be interested in taking it. The only genres we truly steer clear from are romance/erotica and YA.

We want to showcase your unique voice, too. Don't cookie cutter or tailor your style to fit whatever mold you think we'll except. Make it yours. Keep it real. You got this!

And before you ask, we want your good, bad, and ugly! We don't sugar coat. (Do you let fly with colorful language from time to time? We are no strangers to the f-bomb around these parts.) If you hate it so hard lightening bolts shot out of your eyes and disintegrated the pages right out of your hands, we want to know why. If you love the hell out of the book, gush all over the damn thing. We have no shame here.

  • Books that need a good home 

Oh and we have a shit-ton of awesome small press books that need reviewers, so if you're looking for something to review, and don't mind reading digital copies, we've got a slew of amazing titles for you to choose from. Arcs... recent releases... backlists... we've got 'em all. I'm cooking up a page for the site that'll list out which books we have available for you to choose from. All we ask is that you review what you request from us. 

Author Interviews:

  • Authors are more than their latest book.
Look, everyone does the straight up question-answer interview right? If you've got something new to bring to this tired old format, we want it.  Two authors interviewing each other about their worst readings ever? Playing the "Have You Ever" game? Whatever. However. We just want it to be cool, and interesting, and fresh. 


  • Give us a sneak peek. Tease the hell outta us.
I would never pass up the opportunity to show off your work, as long as it fits our literary mission (small or self published, no romance/erotica, no YA/NA). Send us a snippet of your upcoming novel. Share a short story. We'd love to get inside that book of yours. 

Think Pieces:

  • You have ideas. Your ideas are relevant.
So this will be a new one for us. A deviation from the typical review-and-author-features we've been doing, we need people with something to say about things that are worth talking about in a way no one's quite talked about them yet. 

  • Platform is key. Have fun with your platform.

Maybe you're a lister. Someone who prefers to speak in lists. Your column will share whatever soap-box topic you're on in the form of a list, always. Top 5 Reasons I Won't Read Romance. Top 10 Pet Peeves of the Publishing World. Yadda, yadda. yadda.

Maybe you make up telephone book entries. You remember what a telephone book is, right?

Or maybe you write personal ads from your favorite novels? 

The spot is yours, do with it what you will.

We just have one request! We'd like first-run rights to the content you send. It must remain our original content until the DAY AFTER it is posted. Then, all we ask is that you credit us with a first-run disclaimer. Easy, peasy, right?!?

So, you think you want to submit to us? Here's what you've gotta do next:

  • Send your stuff in an email to
  • Make sure you include your bio/byline, relevant links to you, and any photos or revelant links that I'll need to format into your submission

The great news is there's no deadline. The submissions won't close. So keep sending us your stuff. We look forward to seeing what you're gonna bring! So come on... BRING IT!

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Where Writers Write: Jennifer Tseng

Welcome to another installment of TNBBC's Where Writers Write!

Where Writers Write is a weekly series that will feature a different author every Wednesday as they showcase their writing spaces using short form essay, photos, and/or video. As a lover of books and all of the hard work that goes into creating them, I thought it would be fun to see where the authors roll up their sleeves and make the magic happen. 

This is Jennifer Tseng.

Jennifer is an award-winning poet and fiction writer. Her previous books include No so dear Jenny (Bateau Press) and Mayumi and the Sea of Happiness(Europa Editions). She teaches for the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown, FAWC’s online writing program 24PearlSt, and the Martha’s Vineyard Institute of Creative Writing.

Where Jennifer Tseng Writes

Like many writers, I have a deep appreciation for Virginia Woolfs notion of a room of ones own and I have lived my life in search of one. As soon as we moved into our 3rd floor apartment, it was clear that this Woolfian luxury would not be mine in the traditional sense, so I set out to find a way to create a nontraditional room for myself. I experimented with a series of makeshift arrangements in various corners of the apartment until finally settling on the living room window seat. Its about two to three feet off the ground and long enough for me to lie down in. No one can just walk in; if someone wants to enter they have to climb up. Its tree like and full of light.

When I climb into the window seat and close the curtain that separates it from the living area, it becomes a small room. I have treated it as such, hanging favorite pictures on its narrow walls, adding a little lamp I got at a garage sale, a wooden box that serves as a tiny table, a row of library books, a basket containing my manuscripts-in-progress, a seat cushion. I have covered the floor with rugs and quilts. Having curtains in every direction makes the space feel like a tent. Being so high up, jutting out past the apartment proper, I feel like Im in a treehouse. From here, I can see the sky, trees, a church, the train, other apartments. I can see people on the street but they cant see me. (Ive checked.) Early in the morning, when its quiet, I can hear entire conversations being spoken on the ground below. From here, I can see without being seen, hear without being heard. Its a perfect place for a writer.

Every morning at about 4:30, I go directly to my room and write with a pencil on loose sheets of typing paper or, if I happen to have one, in a notebook. Once the rest of the apartment is awake, I go to an ergonomically friendly stand-up station that I built in a slim, doorless closet, and type up my draft. Then I go back to the living room, print the draft, climb into my room and reread. 

On rare occasions, I open the curtains and find our cat Didi sitting in my place. More often, he waits for me to wake up, then climbs in after me, sits on my lap or curls up next to me. When its cold, he wraps himself like a genie around the lamp. I imagine house cats long to find their own trees in much the same way we writers long for our own rooms. So the two of us find ourselves in the window seat, imagining one thing is another, keeping each other company in the leafy light.

Monday, August 7, 2017

Zach Boddicker's Would You Rather

Bored with the same old fashioned author interviews you see all around the blogosphere? Well, TNBBC's got a fun, literary spin on the ole Would You Rather game. Get to know the authors we love to read in ways no other interviewer has. I've asked them to pick sides against the same 20 odd bookish scenarios.

Zach Boddicker's
Would You Rather

Would you rather write an entire book with your feet or with your tongue?

Feet. Writing a book with one's tongue conjures up repressed images of Gene Simmons and his man-bun, and that would prove to be too much strain. Dry-mouth, cramping, swelling – that sounds horrible.

Would you rather have one giant bestseller or a long string of moderate sellers?

I'd take the long string of moderate sellers. That at least implies that I'd be around long enough to produce such a string.

Would you rather be a well known author now or be considered a literary genius after you’re dead?

A reclusive, well-known author now – considering the thin possibility I'll be reincarnated as a literary genius with no ambition, due to a paperwork error or computer glitch.

Would you rather write a book without using conjunctions or have every sentence of your book begin with one?

I don't think I could go without conjunctions, so I'd have to begin every sentence with one.

Would you rather have every word of your favorite novel tattooed on your skin or always playing as an audio in the background for the rest of your life?

I'd go with the tattoo. An engineer at Intel or some other microprocessor manufacturer could probably fit 75,000 words onto a pretty small patch of skin. The background audio option – way too many risks there. Who would do the narration? Fran Drescher? Truman Capote? Walter Brennan? This world is an unfair place, and these voices would be among my options, I'm afraid.

Would you rather write a book you truly believe in and have no one read it or write a crappy book that comprises everything you believe in and have it become an overnight success?

Now that I've done the former, I'd be happy to write a crappy book that compromises everything I believe in. It could be a useful exercise that might lead to tremendous personal and spiritual growth. But, then to know that thousands of people were duped into reading it would probably cancel out much of that growth.

Would you rather write a plot twist you hated or write a character you hated?

The hated plot twist would be easier to deal with. If I were being coerced by an editor or agent into writing a plot twist that sucked, it would be my first instinct to ask myself “how can I make this suck differently, or suck even worse?” If I were able to come up with something that sucked worse, I'd at least be able to take some ownership of it. Writing a character you hate seems like self-flagellation, considering all the time you spend writing them.

Would you rather use your skin as paper or your blood as ink?

Skin-as-paper for smaller format pieces (postcards, stand-alone sonnets, et. al), and blood-as-ink for longer works.

Would you rather become a character in your novel or have your characters escape the page and reenact the novel in real life?

I'd much prefer that the characters in The Essential Carl Mahogany escape the book and reenact the novel. Though, if that were to happen, and I were there to observe it, I wonder if I'd be thinking man, the book was way better than this bullshit!

Would you rather write without using punctuation and capitalization or without using words that contained the letter E?

If not alive right now, there will be someone who, for whatever reason, cannot use words that contain the letter E. Let that person develop his or her talent.

Would you rather have schools teach your book or ban your book?

I would prefer TECM be taught, especially to students in rural areas. Banned books are a thing of the past, at least in the Western world. 

Would you rather be forced to listen to Ayn Rand bloviate for an hour or be hit on by an angry Dylan Thomas?

I'll take my chances with Dylan Thomas. At least there's some chance of dialogue with him, and possibly cooling him down enough to where we could head back to my place and listen to Rush's 2112 on cassette.

Would you rather be reduced to speaking only in haiku or be capable of only writing in haiku?

Speaking only in haiku wouldn't be so bad.

Would you rather be stuck on an island with only the 50 Shades Series or a series in a language you couldn’t read?

Give me the 50 Shades series. I can cut and paste with that.

Would you rather critics rip your book apart publicly or never talk about it at all?

I would love it if critics ripped my book apart. All are welcome and bring a guest!

Would you rather have everything you think automatically appear on your Twitter feed or have a voice in your head narrate your every move?

The Twitter feed option would probably be best. The vast majority of everything I think is so boring that no one would pay attention.

Would you rather give up your computer or pens and paper?

I'm looking at my computer monitor now, thinking I wish I could quit you.

Would you rather write an entire novel standing on your tippy-toes or laying down flat on your back?

Flat on my back please! I need the rest.

Would you rather read naked in front of a packed room or have no one show up to your reading?

Reading naked in front of a packed room would be ok. There'd be opportunities to conduct some fun experiments and ask some awkward questions of the audience.

Would you rather read a book that is written poorly but has an excellent story, or read one with weak content but is written well?

I would probably last longer with the poorly written, but excellent story. 


Zach Boddicker grew up living the country life north of Laporte, Colorado. Boddicker holds a B.A. in English and a MFA in Fiction from Colorado State University, which have proven useful for his endeavors into publishing. In 2014, his short story “Equipment” was published in “A Decade of Country Hits: Art on the Rural Frontier(Jap Sam Books / M12 Studio). His first book “The Essential Carl Mahogany” (2017), which has been deemed evocative of Nick Hornby, Hunter S. Thompson and Don DeLillo, is the first novel to be published by M12 Studio / Last Chance Press.

In addition to his work as an author, Boddicker has been a staple of the Roots Music scene along the Front Range for 20 years as a member of 4H Royalty, Cowboy Dave Band, Drag the River, and many others. He currently resides in Denver with his wife and two daughters.