The World is Our Oyster

The end of 2014 is drawing nigh, and it feels like 2015 is going to be the Year of Deep Vellum.

Now, more than ever, we need your support. We are building something special in Dallas, but we have so much more to do: more books to publish, more events to organize, more workshops and readings to plan, more outreach to the community to engage in. And we can’t do it without the support of individuals like you. Every dollar amount helps, we are using the video below to launch a serious end-of-year fundraising campaign that will leave Deep Vellum on firm footing as we start 2015, able to commit to ever-greater and more ambitious books and projects, all to put the mission in action, taking literature to the people, bringing translation into greater prominence in our culture.

Please take a moment to watch this fundraising video we produced under the direction of Ardis Campbell, a dear friend to Deep Vellum, and one of the creatives who make Dallas such a unique and inspiring place to live, work, and play, and please consider making a donation to Deep Vellum or purchasing a subscription:

2014 has been a thrilling ride, and you’ve made it all possible so far: we have published our first book; signed with an incredible distributor, Consortium; hosted numerous literary events, including translator Sean Cotter reading poems of Nichita Stănescu & prose by Mircea Cărtărescu, and John Darnielle reading from his National Book Award-nominated debut novel; hosted launch parties in New York City (at a Texas BBQ joint) and in Dallas; been invited to and participated in editors’ trips to Germany, the Netherlands, and South Korea; traveled to and spoke on panels at the Frankfurt and London Book Fairs; had our very first author participate in the Texas Book Festival (a goal when starting this press); spoke on panels at literary festivals around the country. And we’re just beginning. With your support, we can continue to change the world from right here in Dallas.

Every dollar you donate to Deep Vellum or spend on a book or a subscription goes towards furthering Deep Vellum’s mission: to signing authors, publishing their books, and paying the translators, as well as organizing literary events we present in Dallas, like Valerie Miles’ (editor of A Thousand Forests in One Acorn from Open Letter Books, 11/19) and Marian Schwartz’s (translator of a new edition of Anna Karenina from Yale University Press, 12/10) upcoming events at The Wild Detectives, plus events in other cities we help present, like Carmen Boullosa’s discussion with Rolando Hinojosa-Smith at the Americas Society in New York City on November 19th. Your support has allowed us to be bold, ambitious, driven, yet committed wholly to the mission of building an engaged readership for literature around the world.

And your support is not going unnoticed, we are being recognized by national publications: last week Flavorwire named Deep Vellum one of the “Top 5 Small Presses Changing the Face of the Industry” (!!) along with our friends Fitzcarraldo Editions and Two Lines Press, and amazing projects (and new friends) Dorothy Project and Triple Canopy. From the Flavorwire description of Deep Vellum:

If the translation scene in American literature is rapidly improving, it’s in part because of the energy and effort of publishers like Will Evans, whose Deep Vellum Publishing will release its first book in December. Deep Vellum promises to produce high-quality translations of must-read books, but that’s not the whole story. Based out of Dallas, Texas, Evans and co. are out to prove that translated literature can and should resonate in broader America. And their first title is something of a mission statement. Imagine Texans reading Texas: The Great Theft, a Carmen Boullosa borderland novel about the Mexican invasion of Texas.

Also last week our distributor Consortium had their sales meetings in lovely Minneapolis. It is an incredible feeling to be a part of such a wonderfully diverse and accomplished group of publishers all distributed by Consortium, to sit in the same room and listen to stories and ideas from Copper Canyon Press, City Lights Books, Akashic Books, Biblioasis, Coach House Books, Open Letter, And Other Stories, Zephyr Press…and MORE, it was inspiring and the sense of belonging I felt was palpable—I built Deep Vellum’s business plan around being distributed by Consortium, and to be there before our first book even comes out is both a sign of Deep Vellum’s ambitions and how far we’ve already come as it is a sign that Consortium is willing to take risks on small and independent publishers like few others.

Plus, the sales meetings were awesome because I got to catch up with my bromance best friend and mentor (and without whom Deep Vellum would not exist), Chad Post of Open Letter Books, who had just flown in straight from the Sharjah Book Fair (Sharjah being one of the Emirates, next to Dubai, and they have a huge book fair that attracts a lot of international publishing industry folks through various programs, fellowships, and grants), and who went home to Rochester for like two days before flying to the ALTA conference going on right now in Milwaukee (wish I was there!). But we got to catch up and talk about life, books, gossip, family, and how he’s growing his beard out in support of Deep Vellum’s first book. Here we are at Consortium’s cocktail party for all the publishers who were in town in their amazing offices in the Keg House Arts Building:

Open Letter + Deep Vellum = BFFs

Open Letter + Deep Vellum = BFFs

So booksellers, get to ordering our books from the fine folks at Consortium; copies of Texas: The Great Theft are in the warehouse and will ship immediately. Pitol is coming in March. Garréta & Gnarr in April. It’ll all be in your lovely Deep Vellum Spring 2015 Catalog, which will be coming to you all along with Consortium’s Spring 2015 catalog. And our catalog will look like this (not the pretty lady on the left, rather the pretty catalog in her hands!):

Livy Traczyk, Marketing Coordinator at Consortium, Modeling Deep Vellum's Spring 2015 Catalog

Livy Traczyk, Marketing Coordinator at Consortium, Modeling Deep Vellum’s Spring 2015 Catalog

Download the Deep Vellum Spring 2015 Catalog (PDF) by clicking the image below:


In closing, here’s a cool story about how our friends (and inspiration and fellow Consortium-distributed publisher) And Other Stories find the translations they publish based on their amazing reading groups, which they started to take up the Finnegan’s List challenge issued by the European Society of Authors of getting more people reading and engaged with foreign literatures. AOS’s reading groups are inspiration to me, and I hope to start something similar here in the near future as well:

As ever, our reading groups have multiple purposes: we want to hear more about books we can’t read for ourselves; we want to hear a range of readers’ opinions of them and to read samples in translation so we can consider them for publication; we also want to make these opinions and samples available to all, including other publishers who may decide they want to publish these books. In short, these groups are our answer to the Finnegan’s List challenge.

Thank you all for your support, it’s such an exciting time for us. We do this for you, and couldn’t do it without you!


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