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Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Milwaukee Hosts Midwest Small Press Festival

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The first Midwest Small Press Festival will be held in Milwaukee from June 1-3. This innovative event aims to celebrate regional accomplishments in the growing small-press movement and serve as an avenue to share literary works. Opening-night events will take place at Woodland Pattern Book Center on June 1; a number of artists will be on hand to discuss their writings. Beginning at 6:30 p.m., authors Russell Jaffe, Lesley Wheeler and Nick Demske—published by Iowa City's Strange Cage Press—will read from their respective works. Jaffe is a co-editor of Strange Cage. His newest collection, an online chapbook, is available from The Red Ceilings Press. Wheeler is a poet and recent graduate of the University of Iowa Writers' Workshop. Demske is the author of a self-titled manuscript that won the Fence Modern Poets Series prize.

At 7:30 p.m., contributors to the anthology New Stories from the Midwest will read excerpts from their works and discuss surrealism and its place in Midwestern literature. Featured readers include Michael Czyzniejewski, editor-in-chief of Mid-American Review, whose stories have appeared in literary magazines including American Literary Review, Quick Fiction and New Orleans Review, among others; Rebecca Makkai, a Chicago-based author whose first novel, The Borrower, is a Booklist Top Ten Debut; and Rachel Swearingen, recipient of the 2011 Mississippi Review Prize in Fiction. More information about the Midwest Small Press Festival can be found online at www.midwestsmallpressfestival.org.