Sunday, May 31, 2009

Received: The Author's Guide to Publishing and Marketing

Terrain.org recently received:

O Books, 2009 (United Kingdom, distributed by Orca NBN in North America)

From the publisher:

Author Tim Ward and publisher John Hunt have teamed up to create The Author's Guide to Publishing and Marketing, a must read for any would-be author, especially in tough economic times. The book is an invaluable resource for new and experienced writers navigating the challenging terrain of book publishing and marketing. Crammed full of time-saving advice and specific suggestions to help authors make the most of their literary creations.

The book draws from the experience of Tim Ward, author of four prevous books, and John Hunt, publisher of O Books. O Books operates a distinctive and ethical publishing philosophy in all areas of its business, from its global network of authors to productino, and worldwide distribution.

This book is produced on FSC certified stock, within ISO14001 standards and teh printer plants sufficient trees each year through the Woodland Trust to absorb the level of emitted carbon in its production.

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Terrain.org will not be reviewing this book in a future issue. However, it appears to be a comprehensive, very user-friendly book, and given O Books's commitment to sustainable publishing, should be at the top of your list for books in this category.

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Terrain.org at ASLE Biennial Conference in Victoria, June 3-6

If you're going to the Association for the Study of Literature and Environment's biennial conference in Victoria, British Columbia (details here), be sure to stop by the Terrain.org table in the exhibitors area, where you'll have the opportunity to meet Terrain.org's editor and publisher, Simmons Buntin, as well as learn more about the journal.


Simmons will be reading an essay appearing in the new issue of Hawk & Handsaw: A Journal of Creative Sustainability titled "Songbird" on Wednesday morning, June 3, for the Wildbranch Writing Workshop panel (Session B14, 10:30 to noon).

Simmons is also participating in the Ecological Media pre-conference panel on Tuesday, June 2. His hypertext essay is "Virtual Sense of Place: Terrain.org and the Online Nexus of Literature and Environment" and can be viewed online at www.terrain.org/ecomedia.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Received: Voices from the American Land, a New Chapbook Series

Terrain.org recently received:

Voices from the American Land : Winter 2009
Lo & Behold: Household and Threshold on California's North Coast, by Joanne Kyger

Voices from the American Land chapbooks are published four times a year by the American Land Publishing Project, Inc., a New Mexico nonprofit organization, in partnership with the Center for American Places at Columbia College, Chicago. The ALPP produces four chapbooks a year, offered by subscription, and conducts on-the-land readings and classroom educational activities. The Center publishes an annual collection of the chapbooks as a single volume, distributed nationally to bookstores by the University of Chicago Press.

On the inside cover:

Here begins Voices from the American Land -- Joanne Kyger's chronicle of a literary life infused with the natural scene in a village on the northern California coast. Lo & Behold offers an evocative memoir of the animals, plants, landforms, strange and wonderful visitors, neighbors, an dfamous poets and artists that are part of the poet's daily round.

Forthcoming authors include Quraysh Ali Lansans [out now] who writes of growing up black (and Native American) in the hard, dusty landscapes of Oklahoma. He is Director of the Gwendolyn Brooks Center for Black Studies and Creative Writing at Chicago State University. Patricia Clark, poet-in-residence at Grand Valley State University, reflects on the numinous interaction of the human spirit with the spirit of the woodlands of Michigan. And Levi Romero, poet and architect-planner, whose work, in English and Spanish, tells of the life on the land in Hispanic northern New Mexico. A critic writes: "No other poet can pull el duende from his labyrinth the way Levi can." Such as the Voices from the American Land.

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Terrain.org will not be reviewing this chapbook in a forthcoming issue, but we do encourage you to investigate the good work of the American Land Publishing Project and the quarterly Voices from the American Land series at http://www.voicesfromtheamericanland.org/.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Culture and the Environment -- A Conversation in Five Essays

If you haven't yet seen it, then you need to do yourself a favor and head out to your local literary bookstore, or order online, the latest copy of The Georgia Review (Spring 2009).

Among many other outstanding contributions, it includes "Culture and the Environment -- A Conversation in Five Essays:" Scott Russell Sanders (Simplicity and Sanity), Reg Saner (Sweet Reason, Global Swarming), David Gessner (Against Simplicity), Lauret Savoy (Pieces toward a Just Whole), and Alison Hawthorne Deming (Culture, Biology, and Emergence).

From The Georgia Review editor Stephen Corey's introduction:

The keynote work, Scott Russell Sanders's "Simplicity and Sanity," puts forward a wide-ranging examination of humankind's relationship to the natural world and argues for its radical overhaul.

Reg Saner's "Sweet Reason, Global Swarming" embraces Sanders' fears for the literal survival of the human race but gives the argument a different center -- one that conjures a dark figure from all of our high school history classes, Thomas Malthus, whose lone claim to renown is a theory we have let slip into the background while confronting myriad more immediate-seeming dangers.

David Gessner then confronts Sanders with "Against Simplicity: A Few Words for Complexity, Slippiness and Joy," claiming that his sometime-mentor/idol may be entering the fray with the wrong weapon in hand.

Lauret Edith Savoy, in "Pieces toward a Just Whole," initially lauds Sanders' position but concentrates the bulk of her essay on certain racial and economic factors that she believes are being overlooked in virtually all discussions of environmental catastrophe.

Alison Hawthorne Deming's "Culture, Biology, Emergence," the most sweeping of the five essays in this conjured five-way conversation, moves across eons of time and many disciplines of study to reach a conclusion that is, paradoxically, more desparate and more hopeful than those presented by her four compatriots.

If you are familiar with The Georgia Review (which has no relation to Terrain.org though many of the contributors mentioned above appear in our online pages), then you know that its contributions are of the highest quality. With this environmentally focused issue, the journal clarifies the focus by some of our foremost thinkers and writers, literary or otherwise.

We encourage you to check it out.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Received: Crazy Love, new poems by Pamela Uschuk

Terrain.org recently received:


Published by Wings Press, San Antonio, 2009.

From the publisher:

Through bold and innovative language, a strong female narrative explores the world and provides a voice for those who have been silenced in this empowering and inspirational collection of poetry. Examining a wide range of topics—love, spirituality, nature, and family—the poems give particular focus to politics, discussing how the actions of the government affect individuals on a daily basis. Filled with natural imagery and speckled with traces of the author’s Russian, Swedish, and American heritage, this fresh compilation dares to take risks and ultimately offers hope and inspiration to people from all walks of life.

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Pamela Uschuk is a professor of creative writing at Fort Lewis College, the editor in chief of the literary magazine Cutthroat: A Journal of the Arts, and the author of four volumes of poetry, including the award-winning Finding Peaches in the Desert and the Pulitzer Prize–nominated Scattered Risks. She lives in Durango, Colorado.

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Look for a review of Crazy Love, which Naomi Shihab Nye describes as "life lived at the fever pitch of awareness and care" in the forthcoming issue of Terrain.org.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Virtual Sense of Place


Check out this hypertext essay by Terrain.org editor Simmons B. Buntin:


The premise: Whether virtual or actual, what drives strong community and a sustainable nexus between the built and natural environments is sense of place. The purpose of this interactive position statement is to explore sense of place in the context of ecological media — for e-zines like Terrain.org: A Journal of the Built & Natural Environments that work at the nexus of literature and environment, and otherwise.

The essay was developed for the Ecological Media seminar which precedes the Association for the Study of Literature and Environment (ASLE) biennial conference this June in Victoria, B.C. Terrain.org will have a table at the conference. Simmons is participating in the seminar and also reading his essay "Songbird," appearing in the current issue of Hawk & Handsaw: The Journal of Creative Sustainability, as part of the Wildbranch Writing Workshop Essays panel.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Received: The Edge of the Sea of Cortez, by Betty Hupp and Marilyn Malone

Terrain.org recently received:


A seashore adventure beyond beachcombing...

Published by Operculum, LLC and distributed by The University of Arizona Press

From the publisher:

The Sea of Cortez, also known as the Gulf of California, is framed by the Mexican mainland and the Baja California peninsula. Once called the Vermillion Sea, its long narrow shape results in tidal extremes that provide a unique home for a rich diversity of marine life. The beautiful waters entice tourists from all over the world and beckon marine scientists to discover their secrets.

Lavishly illustrated in the tradition of Dorling Kindersley’s reference books, The Edge of the Sea of Cortez: Tidewalkers’ Guide to the Upper Gulf of California is the only guide to the diverse sea creatures that can be observed along the rocky shores of the Gulf of California. In these pages, you will find a trove of valuable information whether you take this book with you along the beach, meeting the fascinating creatures at the tips of your toes, or simply read about these intertidal denizens from afar.

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While I'm afraid we won't be able to fit a review of this book into a forthcoming issue, I assure you it is a beautiful, user-friendly book that would serve Sea of Cortez visitors well.

Received: A Conservationist Manifesto, by Scott Russell Sanders

With this post, we're committing to posting more often on this blog, in part by noting those publications we receive for review, which may or may not make it into an actual review on Terrain.org. Look for updates at least weekly and more often when possible.

We recently received:


Practical, Ecological, and Philosophical Grounds for a Conservation Ethic

From Indiana University Press, the publisher:

As an antidote to the destructive culture of consumption dominating American life today, Scott Russell Sanders calls for a culture of conservation that allows us to savor and preserve the world, instead of devouring it. How might we shift to a more durable and responsible way of life? What changes in values and behavior will be required? Ranging geographically from southern Indiana to the Boundary Waters Wilderness and culturally from the Bible to billboards, Sanders extends the visions of Henry David Thoreau, John Muir, and Rachel Carson to our own day.

A Conservationist Manifesto shows the crucial relevance of a conservation ethic at a time of mounting concern about global climate change, depletion of natural resources, extinction of species, and the economic inequities between rich and poor nations. The important message of this powerful book is that conservation is not simply a personal virtue but a public one.

Scott Russell Sanders, Distinguished Professor of English at Indiana University Bloomington, is the author of 20 books of fiction and nonfiction, including Writing from the Center (IUP, 1995), Hunting for Hope, and A Private History of Awe. Sanders is winner of the Lannan Literary Award, John Burroughs Essay Award for Natural History, AWP Award in Creative Nonfiction, and the 2009 Mark Twain Award. He lives in Bloomington, Indiana.

What others are saying:

"Sanders’s A Conservationist Manifesto is a book to be savored — for its language, its stories, its sense of place, and for how it reminds us of the profound relationships with nature and each other that can inspire us to change how we live on this planet. . . . A must read for all of us who are wrestling with the future of conservation and searching for how to express the values that will take us to a greener and more sustainable future"
— Will Rogers, President, The Trust for Public Land

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Look for a review of A Conservationist Manifesto in Terrain.org's next issue, which publishes on September 10, 2009.