In light of our month of indie press highlights, I'm thinking fondly today of author Dodie Bellamy, whose work I love and who publishes with some really interesting presses. I've always admired her taste in publishers, not to mention her prose. Bellamy has published numerous books, and The Letters of Mina Harker is presumably the book that brought her first acclaims. A few years ago, it was reprinted from its original Lingo Books version through the University of Wisconsin Press for their Library of American Fiction series, with a foreword by Dennis Cooper. This means, it's easier to get now...
Most recently, her Barf Manifesto was published as a chapbook by Brooklyn-based Ugly Duckling Presse. It is a cool edition, with an embossed Raymond Pettibon cover, and in fact it's sold out from Ugly Duckling. However, one can still get it, apparently, through their distributor, SPD. I wouldn't presume to review Bellamy's books here, but Bellamy's Barf Manifesto is a radical reaction to piece Eileen Myles published in her poetry book, Sorry Tree, called "Everyday Barf." Bellamy and Myles, both renowned for writing in personal voices, treat that abject topic---vomit---with critical thought and humor in homage to a woman's body. Barf Manifesto is a three-part chapbook, and includes essays such as "MLA Barf," a paper Bellamy delivered at a literary conference. Courageous as always!
Bellamy has also published with other presses I have great respect for, Krupskaya, and Suspect Thoughts. Krupskaya has also published Kevin Killian, but I'm saving words about him for a future post.
Krupskaya has a great design sensibility, and they published Dodie's last book of critical writing, Academonia. Bellamy is a devoted writing teacher and academic who conducts workshops in the Antioch MFA program in Los Angeles, as well as at San Francisco State. Therefore, she's written critically on a wealth of topics, often tied into sexual themes and the expertimental possibilities of language.
Suspect Thoughts published Bellamy's previous title, Pink Steam. I adore Pink Steam! Suspect Thoughts takes a "wide-open definition of the word queer" and they have published some super steamy books!
Bellamy, lastly, publishes herself on her wonderful blog, Belladodie, which will be a great read for anyone interested in the Bay Area literary community.
Today, I encourage everyone to investigate Dodie Bellamy.