Featured Books

Conference registration includes your choice from one of four featured books. All books are produced by small presses, and the proceeds for each selected book are given directly to each press. On a practical level, you’ll hand us a sheet that indicates which book you’ve selected, then we’ll hand you a book, and on the back end, we’ll hand that publisher or author $12 per book. Everybody wins.

All featured book authors will be participating in the conference, and will be available at designated times (probably during Boxed Wine Happy Hour) for book signings.


I Brake for Moose
by Geeta Kothari (Braddock Avenue Books)

“These unusually varied stories are informed by Geeta Kothari’s brilliant, and far-ranging imagination, so you never know what you’re getting into. Every story is a new occasion, a new land, a new investigation into the identity of characters from all over the world, and a reminder that this formal and thematic dexterity is part of what informs, and makes necessary, the short story. Few collections take advantage of the form the way Kothari does here. The stories are imbued with her distinctly trenchant humor and wisdom, along with a quiet compassion for the grieving, the bewildered, and the misfit. Let’s all hope this is the first of many collections from Geeta Kothari.” —Jane McCafferty, author of First You Try Everything



hanifThe Crown Ain’t Worth Much
by Hanif Willis-Abdurraqib (Button Poetry)

“Hanif Willis-Abdurraqib’s THE CROWN AIN’T WORTH MUCH leaves me contemplating the meanings of soul: communal soul (peep the breadth of cultural shout outs), rhythmic soul (peep the breadth of sound and syntax), and spiritual soul (peep the breadth of compassion). As titles like “Ode to Drake, Ending with Blood in a Field” and “At the House Party Where We Found Out Whitney Houston Was Dead” suggest, Willis-Abdurraqib bridges the bravado and bling of praise with the blood and tears of elegy. The soul of this magnificent book is dynamic, distinguished, and when called for, down and dirty. What a fresh, remarkable debut.” Terrance Hayes


Notes From My Phone
by Michelle Junot (Mason Jar Press)

“A collection of lists, reminders, ideas, journal entries, all taken down in her phone over the course of five years, the book is part poetry, part memoir. The entries are vulnerable, funny, and present a true to life mindset of a woman in her early twenties: A woman who deals with heartbreak, growing up, death, jobs, and the perils of a mouse-infested house.” Kristen Russell, JMWW


Eighty Days of Sunlight
by Robert Yune ( Thought Catalog)

“Robert Yune is a wonderfully perceptive, imaginative, and funny writer. In Eighty Days of Sunlight, he gives us an illumined view of a factory where books are made, an exploration of the crucial bond of brotherhood, and an original homage to being young in Pittsburgh, a city that beautifully springs to life on the page, thanks to Yune’s uniquely observant narrator.” Jane McCafferty, award-winning author of First You Try Everything and One Heart