Consider that every great poet—Pablo Neruda, Lucille Clifton, Emily Dickinson, Walt Whitman, Audre Lorde—was once an unpublished writer. What if their phenomenal, life-changing poetry had never reached you?
You can help Copper Canyon Press publish debut collections by extraordinary new poets and introduce their important work to the world.
Ocean Vuong and Camille Rankine are two such extraordinary poets. Their first books have recently been published, each to great acclaim. Now they’ve come together to invite you to support Copper Canyon Press and the New Poets Project—to share how the publication of a first book changes the life of a poet and the lives of poetry readers.
Together we’re building a bridge to the future, starting with debut collections and moving toward the second, third, and fourth books by poets like Ocean and Camille—books that have yet to be written or even imagined.
Backing this campaign will help fund the publication of poets who are at the beginning of promising careers and who will go on to leave a lasting mark on generations of readers. Your gift to Copper Canyon Press, a nonprofit independent publisher, will help launch additional first books, including Javier Zamora’s stunning Unaccompanied, scheduled for publication in 2017, and other as-yet-unknown debut collections.
Together We’re Changing the Future of Poetry—One Poet at a Time
A Publishing Model Powered by Community
The New Poets Project is about first books and the importance of publication. It’s about the many lives that are changed when the voice of a new poet becomes amplified for the world to hear. It’s about the role of an independent publisher in a world largely ruled by the whims of the market, and the beauty of a publishing model that is powered by community.
Together we’ll be funding many happy printings of Camille Rankine’s Incorrect Merciful Impulses and Ocean Vuong’s Night Sky with Exit Wounds so that young readers can find copies of the book generations from now. And together we’re making it possible for someone’s life to be changed by the poetry of Javier Zamora, whose name has yet to appear on the spine of a book at the public library or a local bookstore—and whose debut collection will be published in 2017 with the funds raised by this campaign.
It’s thrilling work, and we cannot build this bridge without you.
We are thrilled to have the support of many community members, including:
- Poet Richard Siken—an advocate for new poets putting important work into the world. You'll see his poetry represented in our backer rewards alongside our debut poets
- Myrna Keliher at Expedition Press—creating bold poetry-inspired artwork for you to hang on your wall
- Filmmaker Caleb Young and illustrator Emily Comfort—who captured Ocean and Camille so beautifully
- The Copper Canyon Press Board of Directors and dedicated staff and volunteers
- Many more Copper Canyon Press authors and friends who have a stake in the future of poetry
Why We Need Your Help
About Copper Canyon Press
Copper Canyon Press is a nonprofit arts organization dedicated to publishing extraordinary poetry books, from debut collections to the work of Nobel Laureates and Pulitzer Prize winners. At Copper Canyon we pride ourselves on taking risks, and we make our publishing decisions based on the aesthetic and cultural value we find in poetry, rather than letting the market dictate the books we bring into the world. As a result, not unlike independent record companies and public radio stations, we rely on the support of donors like you, who share our belief that poetry is vital to language and living.
Each year we publish at least one debut collection by a new poet whose voice we believe in. For over a decade we've committed to co-publishing the APR Honickman first book award as a collaborative way to introduce first books to our list and to readers everywhere, and additionally we acquire debut collections through our open reading periods, and by soliciting manuscripts from promising writers. Through the years we’ve published and co-published first books by poets such as
Joshua Beckman * Erin Belieu * Malachi Black * Natalie Diaz * Matthew Dickman * Michael Dickman * Kerry James Evans * Ben Lerner * Dana Levin * Tomás Morín * Valzhyna Mort * Lisa Olstein * Roger Reeves * Ed Skoog * Melissa Stein. . . and many more.
We are proud of these publications! But each year, we look at our budget and wonder how much freedom we truly have to make that leap into the unknown with a new poet, when only half of our publishing expenses are covered by book sales.
In thanks for your support of The New Poets Project, you can receive:
- Books! Camille Rankine’s Incorrect Merciful Impulses and Ocean Vuong’s Night Sky with Exit Wounds. Already have a copy? Get yourself a SIGNED book along with a rare audio recording, or gift a copy to a friend! You also have the opportunity to back Javier Zamora's forthcoming book Unaccompanied or receive a limited edition handbound copy of Richard Siken's War of the Foxes.