Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Sticking to My Guns: From Mission Statement to Manifesto

Yes, I've been largely absent from this site for a year. I have been off chasing my other Small Press Life pursuits, including my mini 'zine empire. While away, my dedication to the Indie writing and publishing lifestyle has only grown and solidified: I truly cannot imagine going about my time on earth any other way. I am lucky enough to now be able to proclaim that, yes, this small press thing is actually what I do. All of the time. For a living. There has always been generous space in my heart for this little blog; now there is calendar space to match. This means that I can devote an appropriate chunk of my life to disseminating my odd little small press passion in as many forums as I see fit. I intend for this space to benefit greatly.
 The original Mission Statement of a Small Press Life stands. In fact, I think that it is pretty damn eloquent. However, there are a few practical things that I would like to add:

*There will be multiple posts a day, by a small but growing list of contributors, Monday through Friday
*The content will be well-rounded, with all of our original themes carried over, expanded on, and added to; much of it will eventually be reader-driven
*We encourage guest contributions!!
*We will eventually be adding fiction, interviews and original art into the mix

A Small Press Life is about fostering a sense of community for all of the Indie Creatives out there. What we do is fairly solitary. While I firmly believe that most of us prefer it that way, we cannot create our work in a vacuum. We have to occasionally come up for air. Finding camaraderie, support, advice or a few minutes' diversion is often all we need to regenerate our psyche and get back to work with renewed attention. Living a Small Press Life is as much about reaching out as reaching in. There are too few places where this is possible. I hope that this blog becomes one of them.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

News (Good News)

A Small Press Life has been dormant for some time. This is about to change. We will be re-launching the site in a few weeks. What will be unveiled will not be a re-imagining so much as a fine-tuning of the type of content we have always offered. A lot of amazing things have happened to us in recent months but we are so excited to be back. See you very soon!!

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Yoko Ono-Words to Live By

Question: What do you think the biggest obstacle is that non-conformist women face in their pursuit of success?
Yoko Ono: Themselves

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Troll School

Common sense and a grasp of basic reasoning skills should never get in the way of winning an Internet argument. Time for another priceless pearl of wisdom from Troll School!

Lesson# 4: Oh yeah? What about Clinton? (alternatively: Oh yeah? What about Carter/FDR?)

No argument, no matter how well made, can ever withstand the brutal onslaught of the administrations of former US Presidents Clinton, Carter, or Roosevelt. Whatever positive influences these three presidents may have had on their country or the world around them notwithstanding, their personal failures, foibles, and intern-related indiscretions are enough to win any Internet conflict you may be involved in. To wit:

“Dick Cheney just shot a man in the face!”
“Oh, yeh? What about Clinton?”
Argument solved.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Troll School

The wild and wooly world of the Internet has provided the human race with a burgeoning treasury of knowledge and information, beamed directly to our computers faster than our minds can process it. It is important to remember, in this fast-paced digital age, that no amount of facts, critical thinking or indisputable evidence should ever get in the way of winning an argument.

Certain aspects of debate – such as not knowing what one is talking about, arguing more from emotion than logic, and/or simply making things up out of thin air – form the rock-solid foundation of making an unassailable point, and should not be forgotten in the advent of technology that provides for immediate fact checking

It is thus in the spirit of public service that we now present to you, our reader, the finer points of winning an argument online, or, as we like to call it, TROLL SCHOOL.

Lesson One: Semantics.
The reason, intelligence, and wealth of facts any enemy poster may have will be completely undone with the use of semantics.
It doesn't matter if said opponent is a constitutional scholar with a PhD. in history, one single word will undo them. For example:
"America is a democracy".
This falsehood is ripe for the pickings with the response:
"WRONG, d_ _ _kface! America is a republic!"

The fact that the enemy poster never implied that the US is a commonwealth, a giant state, a kingdom, et al notwithstanding - he's a total commie, and he just demonstrated it.

Join us under the bridge next Sunday for a new lesson. Until then, keep on trollin'!

Monday, August 17, 2009


The following is the first installment of a fiction serial that I started writing for one of my other sites, 1000 Follies. I decided that it is a more natural fit here. After running the first III Parts, I will start adding to the story little-by-little. Please come back for Part II.


It is with honest pleasure that I introduce this collection of columns by Margaret Millet. I do so as her friend as well as her Publisher. I worked with Margaret for approximately eight months, during the period that she wrote for my newspaper, The Estimator. It was in that publication that all of the pieces in this compilation first appeared, from September 2006 until March 18, 2007.

I met Margaret about 3 weeks before sending her on her stint to Canada. She impressed me immediately, and with great clarity, as a woman and writer of depth, talent, intelligence and vision. I felt, at the time, that The Estimator had fallen too far away from my initial goals: it had become stale, boring, and perilously close to extinction. In an effort to shake new life into its tired bones, I mass hired an interesting bunch of characters from all sorts of small publications. The Indie Artists, as they liked to call themselves, succeeded in infusing vigorous blood and energy into The Estimator.

Margaret came to me from a tiny magazine that folded a few months later. The job did not pay her bills, something that bothered her to practically no degree at all. She was a woman in love with words. She thought it privilege enough just to be allowed to set her thoughts to paper. Readership was not really something she thought about. I changed that when I sent her to Montreal. Instantly, she had 300,000 people reading her columns: it rather quickly became their privilege. I can think of no one else that I would have even considered sending to another country, with no guidelines or subject matter. All that she had to do was write, steadily and well, to the tune of 3 columns a week. She managed this with beauty, expertise, and an entirely unique voice. Margaret wrote incessantly while up North. I am not sure that she did anything else, apart from the charming perambulations mentioned in her columns.

Although our relations were always warm, considerate, and full of humour, i never got to know Margaret in any intimate capacity. It is my belief that she had given up on the notion of a one-on-one connection with others. She channeled that loss into her writing and, so doing, intimately connected with her readers in a way that would probably not have been possible otherwise.

Margaret Millet, by the way, was not her real name. She chose it for its alliterative quality. Even after I hired her, and gave her that wide readership on a silver platter, she declined to use her given name, which was perfectly lovely. It is not my place to divulge her true identity, so we will continue to call her Margaret Millet, a name that gave her real pleasure.

I sincerely hope that you enjoy the works contained within these covers. I was proud to print them a few years ago, and I remain so. If anything, my enjoyment has increased over time. I hope that you take away something of the intelligence, artistry, and whimsy with which Margaret endowed her writing and her person.



July 19, 2009