Culture watch

Big Works Afoot in Small Presses

Local beat-influenced poet Jaye Bartell’s Thistle Publications recently released a new collection, Ursula’s Attic. The 30-page book is retailing for $5, and is available at local bookshops and poetry events. For more information, e-mail Like-minded poet and zinester Lisa Flaherty has announced a new project of her own, Third Class Press; a yet-to-be-titled collection of her own work is expected to see release this spring. Flaherty’s previous releases include the local poetry collection Can. And finally, local zine prodigy Stephania (who recounted her early teen anxiety and reflections in works like Blue Ink Tornados) recently released her latest homemade publication, Anel #1. The 40-page book retails for $1.50.

The Latest News in Meat

Local press Alexander Books is nearing the release of their new omnivore-friendly tome. The Recovering Vegetarian Cookbook, by Ralph Roberts, will see publication by late spring. Other upcoming projects include an expanded edition of The Ultimate Guide to Asheville, Hendersonville and the Western North Carolina Mountains by Lee Pantas, which should see release in May, and a yet-to-be titled book about Africa by sci-fi notable Mike Resnick.

If Your TV-Addled Brats Could Use a Little Culturing-Up …

You might want to check out some of the new publications being released by Asheville-based publishers Front Street Books in the coming months. Among the choice selections are the verse novel By the River, by Australian young-adult author Steven Herrick; Thunderboom! Poems for Everyone, by poet Charlotte Pomerantz and illustrator Rob Shepperson; and the reissue of the classic young-adult novel The Mark of the Horse Lord, by Rosemary Sutcliff.

On the Underwater Front

Arden-based trade publication Aquaculture Magazine is currently wading through industry information to spawn their annual Products issue. The 70-plus-page goods-and-services guide is a national resource for those in the fish-farming world, and should see print in late July. The staff of the bimonthly magazine is currently in their 36th year of diving into the murky intrigue of trout farming, and will begin working on their massive 300-page Buyers guide later this year. For more fin-and-flipper drama, visit

And For Those of You Who Actually Like the Past

The Fairview-based Bright Mountain Books is currently working on some interesting new projects about old topics. In addition to a variety of regional reprints, by mid-spring the group plans to release a history of the Asheville area by Lou Harshaw, tentatively titled Asheville’s Mountain Majesty. The publisher’s summer release will be the genre-twisting This Violent Land, by Robert Johnson, a historical-fiction novel based on real-life diaries from the Reconstruction. For more info, visit


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