Updates

Happy New Year!

Old Iron Press Postcards, 2022

I’m writing this missive while moving into OIP’s *almost completed* office. !!!!! It’s been a slow process that’s been a long time coming–which is kind of the theme of this post. Let’s be honest, it’s one of the themes for OIP. So, how do we enjoy the process more?

Right now, the answer, at least for this unpacker, has been taking time and listening.

A little backstory…

During the height of the pandemic, my family and I moved back to my home state of Indiana. After a year of searching, we finally found a house. An Indy Brutalist with trees and space to build books, make art and motorcycles, and raise chickens? Yes, please! But after moving in, we discovered that there were major structural issues in our mid-century dream. In fact, during part of the renovation, we had to move out. So, Old Iron Press hit the road. (It’s a good thing our trusty mascot Gutenborg has a wheel!)

After launching in May, I ran OIP from literally every place but Indianapolis. But now, we are finally–slowly–getting settled. We are excited at the prospect of exploring our new/old home state, and for all the projects in store for 2023.

The funny thing was that I wasn’t the only one moving this year, so did the rest of OIP’s staff. Both Alex and Drake moved as well. Like I said, it was a theme.

During all the packing and unpacking, the time in trucks, the hours of painting and scrubbing, the OIP staff has been listening. Listening to our thoughts and our surroundings. Listening to music, our people and animals, this OIP community…and, to a heck of a lot of podcasts. We thought we’d share some of our favorites with you today.

Drake, OIP’s Production Designer, recommends Hello from the Magic Tavern:

“For fans of fantasy and/or improv comedy, Hello From the Magic Tavern is an unforgettable intersection of dragons and drollery. The host, Arnie Niekamp, fell through a dimensional rift behind his local Burger King in Chicago and into a strange, magical land called Foon. By some miracle, he's still able to receive a wi-fi signal and hosts a weekly podcast where he interviews the creatures, wizards, and adventurers that call Foon home. At the end of every episode, I find myself thoroughly astonished when I catch my breath, fade back into reality, and start to remember... wait, that was all improvised?!”

Credit: Hello From the Magic Tavern and Allard Laban

Alex, OIP’s Consulting Editor, recommends Another Roadside Attraction by Heavyweight:

“A chance encounter at a bookstore sets the stage for one of the most moving episodes of Heavyweight. This podcast excels at unfolding complicated, surprising narratives in under an hour, but this story--about a bookshop owner who dies by suicide and the people who loved her--is an absolute masterpiece of the form.”

Credit: Gimlet Media

And, introducing Alyssa, who among a myriad of titles and roles is also the host for OIP’s new monthly IG game show, Trivia Tuesday. (*A real introduction and Q&A with Alyssa coming soon! And, more information about TT below.) Alyssa recommends The Skinny Confidential HIM & HER show:

“TSC is hosted by a duo of avid readers, who just so happen to be married. Lauryn and Michael run the gamut when it comes to books they’ve read—from skin care tips and tricks to ancient Roman history, all the way to books about how to heal your mind, body, and soul. This thirst for knowledge in a wide variety of topics comes through clearly in their podcast. Each episode is an hour-long deep dive with guests who are authorities on the conversation of the hour. Michael and Lauryn are great hosts because they keep things light and funny, but also know when it’s time to get serious and into the nitty-gritty. Guaranteed laughs and learning in each episode of the podcast. Cheers!”

Credit: Dear Media

I recently had the pleasure and privilege to be a guest on one of my favorite podcasts, Bonnets at Dawn. Lauren Burke and Hannah Chapman, the creators of B@D and the authors of Why She Wrote: A Graphic History of the Lives, Inspiration, and Influence Behind the Pens of Classic Women Writers, host this insightful and charming show about women writers. It was an honor to speak with them about OIP and to be included on an episode with authors Lorraine Tosiello and Jane Cavolina, and Roseann Backlin from the bookstore, Love’s Sweet Arrow. (*Don’t forget to check out OIP’s Q&A with Lorraine!)

Credit: Bonnets at Dawn

Other podcasts I enjoyed this year:

In addition to listening to podcasts while unpacking, all of us at OIP have been taking some time to look back on 2022, and thinking about the year ahead.

  • We launched Old Iron Press May 1, 2022. After years of slowly building and planning, we officially launched! We opened submissions for our first anthology, Playing Authors, and introduced ourselves.
  • Every month, we sent out good mail. Our OIP sticker packs of care and cheer have arrived to over a hundred incredible humans who’ve submitted work, followed us on Instagram, or signed up for our *upcoming* newsletter…and we’re excited to send out even more in 2023!
  • We closed submissions for Playing Authors and opened General Submissions on December 1, 2022. Take a look at our submission guidelines.
  • We began sending out rolling acceptance letters and are currently finalizing our line-up of incredible pieces for our first project, Playing Authors. !!! We’re super excited to announce our kickass roster for our inaugural anthology in early 2023!
  • We began hosting a Q&A series on our site and are excited to continue this in the coming year. Check out our interviews with Drake, Alex, and Lorraine Tosiello, and look forward to many more in 2023.
  • At OIP, we are big fans of taking our time and being intentional with content. We’ve been working hard on our upcoming quarterly newsletter and are excited to share it with you in 2023. If you haven’t signed up, you can do so here. Make sure to add us to your address book or promotions tab.
  • Check out our Digital Disruption series and don’t forget to share your own!
  • We post regularly about books we love on our Instagram and have a bookshop.org site where you can discover even more. We champion retooled classics, underdogs, and disobedient forms.
  • We started Trivia Tuesday, our monthly OIP Game Show, hosted by Alyssa Williams Preston. On the first Tuesday of every month, we host a series of questions in our IG Stories. The first person to answer the most questions correctly has the chance to win a variety of curiously curated collectibles.
  • In 2023, we will be launching our merch and object offerings! We’re incredibly excited to share these with you. Every purchase supports our press and the writers/artists/makers we publish.

We have so much more fun on the horizon, and look forward to sharing it with you in the coming year! We are dedicated to publishing the small, strange, and uncategorizable. And, having fun doing it.

To paraphrase the words of the great Fred Rogers, “We like to take our time.” At OIP, we believe in the power of making on a very human scale. Thank you for supporting this mode of being.

It’s hard to believe that we are eight months old! We want to thank you for your support during this first year. It’s such an incredible privilege to be able to create this space and collaborate with you. We are so honored to have this opportunity, and are excited to continue to share the road to our first publishing project with you.

As Playing Authors, our inaugural anthology, continues to take shape, we are excited to share the process with you and introduce the incredible contributors we will be publishing in 2023.

From all of us at OIP, from our families, from all the places we call home, thank you!

Cheers to YOU and a very happy 2023!

– Eliza

In Other News

Q&A with Lorraine Tosiello

Hello, Friends! I don’t know about you, but I’m planning a late game reboot. Rest, repair, and fun are the must haves on this holiday wish list. And, lots of reading. To get started, we have a lovely book to add to your holiday stack, and a Q&A with one of its authors, Lorraine Tosiello.
Read more

Q&A with Alex

Hope this finds you well. HTFYW. The greeting of our current age. Sometimes, while typing it, certain words seem to shimmer. Or, maybe it’s just that I’m typing this after being flattened and still a bit woozy. “Sick as a dog,” a phrase used by my ancestors. Pity the dog?
Read more

Q&A with Drake

In this edition of OIP news, we’re sipping cold drinks, crunching pellet ice, and resting between reality, folks. It’s Q&A time with our wonderful Production Designer, the immensely talented Drake Preston.
Read more