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Indie Lit Fair, Vol. Five

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The Indie Lit Fair, presented by the Community of Literary Magazine and Presses (CLMP) and the PEN World Voices Festival, has been a highlight of the Festival for the past four years. This year, we are delighted to partner with Mary Gannon, Executive Director of CLMP and present a virtual edition in a series of weekly installments highlighting the work of poetry presses, fiction and creative nonfiction publishers, and literary magazines. Join us in supporting independent publishing, an industry that has been hit with particular force by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Indie Lit Fair showcases the breadth of independent magazines and presses our country has to offer. Collectively, they form the bedrock of the literary ecosystem, fostering an environment where writers and their work can flourish. From magazines that highlight voices from local communities, to presses that present books from other countries to U.S. readers, to publishers that focus on specific subjects and genres, their success is marked by the diverse array of voices they bring forth into the culture at large. Browse below and take advantage of the exclusive promotional offers extended to the PEN World Voices community.

53rd State Press

53rd State Press publishes lucid, challenging, and lively new writing for performance. Our catalog includes plays as well as scores and notations for interdisciplinary performance, graphic adaptations, and essays on theater dance. The Press was founded in 2007 in response to the bounty of new writing in the downtown New York community that was not available except in the occasional reading or short-lived performance. In publishing these texts, we make groundbreaking work available across both time and distance. Our name is taken from Karinne Keithley’s ASTRS: “In the cosmos,” she writes, “associations ring across distances. In the 53rd state they meet in the corner.”

Promotion: In support of the USPS, we are offering free domestic shipping on all our titles—including new releases!—through June, July, and August.

Website: 53rdstatepress.org and bookshop.53rdstatepress.org

53rd State Press Covers


At AGNI, our mission is straightforward: to bring our reader into the living moment, not as a tourist but as an engaged participant. And—as means and method—to champion writers who engage the world in and around them, shaping their words so intimately that the ripple of their seeing and the quirks of their thinking become part of the portrait. PEN America called AGNI “a beacon of international literary culture. . . known for publishing important new writers early in their careers.” Even as we focus on writers most haven’t heard of, six of our contributors have gone on to win the Nobel Prize. You can join the Virtual Launch to hear readings by nearly every contributor, including writers in Trinidad, India, Nigeria, and England. Subscribe, and we’ll get you a copy in the mail right away.

Promotion: Enter code PN06 at AGNI Online for 20 percent off new subscriptions.

Website: agnionline.bu.edu/about/the-journal/archive/agni-91

AGNI Covers

Apogee Journal

Apogee Journal is a journal of literature and art that engages with identity politics, including but not limited to: race, gender, sexuality, class, ability, and intersectional identities. We are a biannual publication featuring fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and visual art. Our goals are twofold: to publish fresh work that interrogates the status quo, and to provide a platform for underrepresented voices, prioritizing artists and writers of color.

Our mission combines literary aesthetic with political activism. We believe that by elevating underrepresented literary voices, we can effect real change: change in readers’ attitudes, change in writers’ positions in literature, and broader change in society.

Promotion: Interested in growing your art and supporting creative voices on the margins at the same time? By becoming a monthly member of Apogee Journal for $10, $5, $3, or $1, you get to take advantage of a wide range of perks that include manuscript consultations, free attendance to writing workshops, VIP access to future events and programming, writing advice and prompts via our members-only newsletter, and more.

Website: apogeejournal.org/support

Apogee Journal

Birds, LLC

Birds, LLC is an independent poetry press based out of Austin, Minneapolis, New York, and Raleigh. Specializing in close author relationships, Birds, LLC believes that great books are a collaboration of editors and authors. Birds, LLC supports readings, events, and podcasts for its authors, believing that poetry demands a human voice to read it and an audience to hear it.

Promotion: Pre-sale prices for our two latest releases and 30 percent off all other titles.

Website: birdsllc.com/catalog

Birds, LLC Covers

The Bushwick Review

The Bushwick Review is a literary and art magazine that weaves together the work of more than 20 contributors in each issue. Our home base is Brooklyn, but our contributors live all over the world. We are interested in making art and writing that speaks to being alive in 2020.

Promotion: Buy our latest issue, featuring work by Sarah Jean Alexander, Liz Bowen, Katya Dorokina, Neon Saltwater, Bud Smith, and more.

Website: thebushwickreview.bigcartel.com/product/the-bushwick-review-viii

The Bushwick Review Cover


DSTL Arts is a nonprofit arts mentorship organization that inspires, teaches, and hires emerging artists from underserved communities. This mission is accomplished through various programs that empower individuals from historically-marginalized communities in Los Angeles as the creatives and storytellers they are. Our press works closely with individuals through free, bilingual, community-based programming that develops their skills and helps them transcend limits, be they linguistic, economic, or educational.

Our publications—from zines to chapbooks to coffee table-quality art books—support a diverse range of underrepresented artists. All sales support our free, bilingual, community-based programs for the residents of South and East Los Angeles, and help us continue providing a platform for the emerging artists in our community. 

Website: DSTLArts.org/Shop

DSTL Arts Covers

Etruscan Press

Housed at Wilkes University and partnering with Youngstown State University, Etruscan is a nonprofit literary press working to produce and promote books that nurture dialogue among genres, cultures, and voices. We publish books of poems, novels, short stories, creative nonfiction, criticism, translation, and anthologies. Three of our poetry collections have been National Book Award finalists, one of our titles was chosen as the Poetry Society of America’s First Book Award, and three poems have been chosen for Best American Poetry.

Promotion: Featured on our website, under the heading “INTERVIEWS” and “READINGS,” you will find interviews with our authors, advisors, and staff, as well as readings by our authors. Prepared for the Wilkes University Maslow Family Graduate Program in Creative Writing MFA Summer Residency, we are proud to offer access to all Etruscan readers.

Website: etruscanpress.org

Etruscan Press Covers

Gunpowder Press

Gunpowder Press was founded in 2014 by David Starkey, a Santa Barbara poet laureate, with the intention of publishing the first books of two superb poets: Chryss Yost and David Case. As each new title appears, Gunpowder Press remains small but vibrant, fully committed to every book we publish. The Press was named in acknowledgement of Barbara of Nicomedia, our city’s namesake and the patron saint of gunpowder.

Promotion: Buy any volume in the Gunpowder catalog and receive a free copy of one of our first two books, or The Shape of Water, the final collection by legendary Santa Barbara poet Barry Spacks.

Website: gunpowderpress.com

Gunpowder Press Covers

Milk and Cake Press

Milk and Cake Press seeks to publish an eclectic collection of poems. We love language, the sounds it creates, and the power of it to name and shape. We welcome work from a diverse range of poets, including women, people of color, and those who identify as LGBTQIA+. 

Promotion: $3 off any single title, or all four titles for $50 (a $65 value).

Website: milkandcakepress.com/shop

Milk and Cake Covers


Ploughshares is an award-winning journal of new writing. Since 1971, Ploughshares has discovered and cultivated the freshest voices in contemporary American literature, and remains prescient in the digital age by providing readers with thoughtful and entertaining literature in a variety of formats. Find out why The New York Times named Ploughshares “the Triton among minnows.”

Promotion: Check out our Spring 2020 issue, guest-edited by Tracy K. Smith, which features work by Kirstin Valdez Quade, Dawn Lundy Martin, Denise Duhamel, Roger Reeves, Brenda Hillman, and many others!

Website: pshares.org

Ploughshares Cover

Ricochet Editions

Ricochet Editions is committed to publishing innovative, nontraditional, genre-less, hybrid works that have a difficult time finding homes with other publishers. Our tradition is a movement away from what has been established toward challenging new trajectories. Since 2012, we have published manuscripts ranging from small chapbooks to full-length books. We publish writers at any stage of their career—established, emerging, and unknown authors alike. We are devoted to engaging in an extended author-editor dialogue.

Website: See our current call for submission guidelines. Books are available at SPD.

Ricochet Editions

Running Wild Press

Running Wild Press publishes great stories with great writing that don’t fit neatly in a box. Two of our stories were named best of 2019 by Kirkus. A third book will be named the best book of July 2020.

Check out our “Weekly Run Wild With Us/Ask Lisa Anything” series on Facebook, as well as our monthly “Storytellers Happy Hour,” which features improvised stories and libations. Both programs will be shared on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube.

Promotion: Buy three of our books and get one for free. Simply send the receipt to [email protected], and you’ll be reimbursed for the fourth book.

Website: runningwildpress.com

Running Wild Press


Salamander is a magazine for poetry, fiction, creative nonfiction, and reviews, as well as poetry and fiction in translation. It publishes outstanding work by writers deserving of a wider audience, alongside new work by established writers. Founded in Brookline, Massachusetts, in 1992, Salamander moved to Suffolk University in Boston in 2005. Its contents have been anthologized in Best American Short Stories, Best American Poetry, The O. Henry Prize Stories, The Pushcart Prize Anthology, and more.

Promotion: Subscribe now, at $15 for one year or $27 for two years, and receive our most current issue, #49, for free!

Website: salamandermag.org/subscribe

Salamander Covers


SLICE magazine bridges the gap between emerging writers and the publishing world. We believe that it’s critical to welcome emerging writers into the very room where industry leaders are talking about the art and the business of the written word. Each issue of SLICE has a theme, and we invite new voices and publishing professionals to respond to that theme in a variety of ways—through fiction, poetry, essays, and interviews.

Promotion: 20 percent off SLICE orders for summer. Use the promo code indielit.

Website: slicemagazine.org/magazine

SLICE Covers

Zephyr Press

Now celebrating our 40th anniversary year, Zephyr Press is an award-winning translation press whose books bring acclaimed international poets and authors to English-speaking readers, often for the first time. While we focus on contemporary poetry and prose in translation from Russia, Eastern Europe, and Asia, we have published books from more than a dozen languages—and counting. We also maintain an older list of American poetry and prose, and occasionally reprint books of literary and historical value that have long been out of print. We seek to be a bridge between cultures and organize bilingual readings, educational workshops, and other cross-cultural exchanges in the United States and abroad.

Promotion: Get 20 percent off all purchases on our website, from now until the end of July with special code PENSUMMERreads20.

Website: zephyrpress.org

Zephyr Press Covers

About the Community of Literary Magazines and Presses (CLMP)

CLMP ensures a vibrant, diverse literary landscape by helping mission-driven independent literary magazines and presses thrive. We provide publishers with funding and technical assistance; facilitate peer-to-peer learning and group action; serve as a dependable, essential hub for best practices, resources, and nurturing community support; and build bridges to connect publishers with other groups of literary stakeholders, including readers, writers, booksellers, librarians, educators, presenting organizations, and funders. Along with directly serving 400+ member-publishers located in almost every state in the country, CLMP administers the Lit Mag Adoption program, which provides to educators and students discounted literary magazine subscriptions for use in the classroom; an annual Indie Lit Fair, featuring magazines and presses at the PEN World Voices Festival; the Literary Writers Conference, a two-day professional development event for writers held every December in New York City; and the annual Firecracker Awards for Independently Published Literature, which celebrates magazines and books that make a significant contribution to our literary culture. To learn more about CLMP, visit clmp.org.

Previous Editions of Indie Lit Fair