Thursday, October 4, 2007

We are very, very proud…

...of upstreet’s Fiction Editor, Robin Oliveira, who has just won the 15th annual James Jones First Novel Fellowship. This $10,000 Fellowship, awarded to an American author of a first novel-in-progress by the James Jones Literary Society and Wilkes University, Wilkes-Barre, PA, is intended to honor the spirit of unblinking honesty, determination, and insight into modern culture exemplified by the late James Jones, author of From Here to Eternity, Some Came Running, and other prose narratives.

Robin Oliveira was born in Albany, NY, in 1954. She earned a BA in Russian from the University of Montana and continued to study at the Pushkin Language Institute in Moscow, USSR. She became a Registered Nurse, and then worked as a bone marrow transplant and cardiac care nurse in Seattle before earning an MFA in writing from Vermont College in 2006. Besides being Fiction Editor for upstreet, she is an assistant editor at Narrative Magazine. She lives in Seattle with her husband, Andrew Oliveira, their daughter, Noelle, and their son, Miles.

Robin’s novel-in-progress, The Last Beautiful Day, follows the story of Mary Sutter, a midwife at the time of the Civil War, whose desire to become a physician is hindered by tradition, the war, and family entanglements.

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Getting it on more shelves--finally

On September 17 I signed a distribution agreement with Source Interlink Companies, which will expand upstreet's exposure beyond the independent bookstores, to the chains. Up to this point upstreet 3 has been marketed by two small distributors, Ubiquity (a national distributor located in Brooklyn) and Armadillo (which services California bookstores, primarily in the L.A. area), and has also been available online at and through the upstreet website. Additional marketing efforts have consisted of my contacting retail outlets directly, either by driving around Western Massachusetts and hand-delivering books, or by making phone calls to bookstores whose names were given to me by upstreet 3 authors. A labor-intensive operation, for sure.

I have been assigned a Circulation Manager, who will oversee the formal solicitation of the upstreet title to Borders/Waldenbooks, Barnes & Noble, B&N College Stores, Hastings, and Disticor (a Canadian distributor which services Chapters/Indigo, the largest Canadian chain, along with literary bookstores throughout Canada). That means that Source has sent a sample copy, along with relevant marketing information, to the people in charge of ordering for each of those corporations. My role at this point is to sit here in Richmond, MA, and wait to hear how many copies of upstreet 3 have been ordered. I should have this number by around November 1.

Nothing would please me more than to receive so many orders that I'll have to go back on the press. upstreet Fan Club members are encouraged to make burnt offerings to the deity of their choice.