New Glebe publishing venture launched

McCloskey, Larry Dog-Eared Books Jan 2017 IMG_2609
Left to right, Larry McCloskey, Jocelyn Van Wynsberghe, Max Szyc, Tanis Browning-Shelp, all of Dog-Eared Books, a new publishing venture in the Glebe. Photo: Courtesy of Dog-Eared Books

by Larry McCloskey

The concept of what became Dog-Eared Books had been several years in the making. A year ago fellow writer Tanis Browning-Shelp, landscape painter and now book illustrator extraordinaire Jocelyn Van Wynsberghe and I decided to get serious and move past the concept and on to the creativity.

We launched Dog-Eared Books, a new small publishing house located right here in the ’hood, on December 14 at Life of Pie and on December 20 at Kaleidoscope Kids’ Books. Our focus, at least for now, is on young adult books with Tanis’s Crash Course and my Unspoken the first two titles launched and at least four more in the works for 2017. Both launches were very successful, with many thanks to Kerry and Roman at Life of Pie, and the three Ks (Kim, Kelly and Karin) at Kaleidoscope Kids’ Books.

Launching even a small publishing house is a big undertaking; but we wanted to create something unique and uniquely local. There may even be local neighbourhoods and themes in some future books.

When we first decided to take the plunge, we were understandably overwhelmed by the task. Still, we agreed that above all, we would make sure that the books were always of a high quality. We are confident we have achieved that goal, and we are sure that Jocelyn’s artwork complements our endeavour. We would love your feedback. Please check out our kitschy website designed by Jocelyn who also did the video and all the artwork on both the website and the books.

I have to say we felt “real” when we were able to get an actual intern in the fall for our little venture. Max Szyc has already made a significant contribution and comes to us courtesy of the School of Journalism at Carleton University. Special thanks to Jen Hamilton in Calgary who professionally laid out our books and provided invaluable technical expertise. Without Jen’s help from afar, launching Dog-Eared Books in December would not have happened, and without advances in technology the basic concept of creating a small publishing house would have been impossible.

Since the launch we have been asked if we intend to expand Dog-Eared Books to include other writers. The answer is if we find writers who like the local and autonomous press that they see, if they are dedicated to producing high quality work, and if they are willing to contribute to Dog-Eared Books, then please contact us.

With that highly conditional and yet heart-felt invitation, I expect we will be talking to some excellent Glebe writers in this new year!

Larry McCloskey is a writer and co-founder of the Glebe-based publisher Dog-Eared Books.

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