Somewhere around a year and a half ago the writer J.A. Tyler contacted NewLights and a few other small presses to see if we were interested in a project idea. Mr. Tyler had written a story that existed in five different versions or iterations—not five parts in a sequence—one story realized five different ways, all based on the same “core.” And the idea, after the stories were written, was to see if he could get all five iterations published, each by a different small press, all at the same time. The main title of the project was ZZZZZZZZZZZZZ. The proposed release date was May 15, 2011. I said yes. The time is drawing near.

The other presses involved in the project are:

Greying Ghost
Warm Milk Printing Press
The Collagist

We had a fifth press, but they folded in the interim between conception and execution. And now it’s too late, so we are down to four for now.

The idea spoke to me for a few reasons. First, it involved a group of presses all working together. Anything that expands and deepens the community I am all for. Second, the project relies on the idea of repetition and difference for its shape. I’ve been experimenting with multiple iterations of my own texts/books, so it’s interesting to see how someone else approached the same problem. And third, the story fit the specs for more chapbookish type production that I was looking to do. Good timing and a good fit.

Right now the book is towards the final design stages. Future posts will go into more detail about the individual steps.

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