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Nostrovia! Poetry’s 2015 Chapbook Contest: Cover Art + Reviews + Presale Updates!!!

GREETINGS, FRIENDS! There’s been a ton of hustle these last few weeks and I wanted to share some huge updates regarding our 2015 Chapbook Contest!

First of all, we wanted to share these GORGEOUS covers designed by Kyle Harvey (editor of Fruita Pulp), who has worked very hard for our three winners, echoing their moods and imagery. Behold!

“Bird Lizard Horse” by August Smith


“Moon Facts” by Bob Schofield

“Juliet (II)” by Sarah Xerta


Incredible work–again, huge props to Kyle Harvey!!

Secondly–we are GREATLY interested in obtaining reviews for these fabulous collections. Along those lines, big thanks to Beyza of Probably Crying Review, Chase Ledin of the Tumblr Writer’s Directory, and Quincy Rhoads of Entropy for stepping forward so quickly (reviews to be posted in the next month or so!). Additionally, here’s what people are already saying about our chapbooks(!):

“August Smith is a child telling the truth. Sometimes the truth is he has to listen to the voices of various creatures he’s killed speak to him reproachfully, and he shares that with us, because wouldn’t we all? Parties abound in this collection and reading it feels like being invited. You can tell Smith wants you there.” –Matthew Rohrer

“After reading Moon Facts by Bob Schofield you will be terrified when THE MOON visits your garden or picnic or night. You’ve probably attended MOON festivals your entire life and never known any facts about THE MOON except the facts THE GOVERNMENT printed on your cereal boxes. Your government is lying to you about THE MOON. Bob Schofield is not a liar. He wants to help you understand THE MOON.”  –Chad Redden

“Sarah Xerta’s JULIET (II) is a harrowing new kind of post-apocalyptic narrative where the desolate landscape being explored is the poet’s own skin and bones. This powerful continuation to 2014’s JULIET (I) is written in second person since “you don’t know who that girl is. You call her Juliet because she is dead,” & this has the effect of both exposing the profound disembodiment that accompanies trauma and sublimating the autobiographical to clear a space in which Juliet becomes a sort of everywoman, or everyperson, of survival. Stunning, unforgettable, and nauseatingly real, Sarah Xerta’s words make the kind of poems you’d gather up in your arms to hold, if physical intimacy were still an option.” –Sonya Vatomsky

If you’re interested, please contact me (at, letting me know what you’re interested in writing. Every person who gets their review posted will be thanked with a free print copy, which are being produced by Craig Mullins at Bottlecap Press. Craig has been wonderful to work with these last few weeks, as we’ve spent a ton of time adjusting printing specs to best showcase these winning chapbooks!

FINALLY(!): in less than TWO WEEKS (end of this month), we will be finally opening the floodgates for presales!!! We will be selling single copies using a “Pay What You Can + $5″ model, though we will also have a bundle deal for all three collections! We’re shooting to have everything ready to deliver in early July!


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Nostrovia! Poetry’s 2015 Chapbook Contest: TEN FINALISTS


Jeremiah and I have been reading and rereading these last three weeks, discussing your manuscripts! It’s incredibly clear that our community really trusts what we’re doing at Nostrovia! Poetry, as so many of you submitted an incredible mix of work we’d never seen before!

By the first weekend, we quickly realized five finalists couldn’t properly acknowledge all your hard work–so we’ve gone and doubled the count! We’re so excited to share the following list of Nostrovia! Chapbook Finalists(!):

  • Dalton Day – “To Breathe I’m Too Thin”
  • Meg Eden – “I am Linwood Eden or Current Resident”
  • Logan Ellis – “City of Broken Analogies”
  • Leah Mueller – “Allergic to Everything”
  • Bob Schofield – “Moon Facts”
  • Beach Sloth – “March 23rd, 2015″
  • August Smith – “Bird Lizard Horse”
  • Adam Tedesco – “Psycho Genetic Trans Fur”
  • Barrett Warner – “Twin Speech”
  • Sarah Xerta – “Juliet (II)”

From this pool of ten, we’ll (somehow, ugh!) be selecting our three winners–for details on the prize, check this earlier article. Again, thank you so much for your continued support of Nostrovia! Poetry–we have some big goals in mind and are fueled by your love! CHEERS!

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Traveling pop-up bookstore wants your Passion

Books & Shovels, a nonprofit traveling pop-up bookstore, has begun accepting book / zines / [ anything that exhibits passion ] donations once again! We distribute the materials we receive at a pay-what-you-can rate to rip monetary drive out of the throat of art, and promote Passionate Living > Making a Living.

books and shovels

We get dirty doing this jazz. We live out of the Books & Shovels vehicle, hitting open mics, slams, festivals, and street corners, setting up our shelves, and pairing classic literature alongside independently published content. We debuted at the 2014 NYC Poetry Festival last year, and have since gone through N.H. / M.A. / N.Y. / O.H. / I.N. / I.L. / M.O. / K.S. / C.O. / V.T. / C.T. / M.D. / P.A. / D.C. / V.A. / N.C. / S.C. / G.A. / S.C. / A.L. / L.A. / T.X. / N.M. / A.Z. / N.V. / & C.A..

We are currently taking a brief break in Tucson, Arizona, while Christopher Morgan & I put focus into the 2015 Nostrovia Poetry Chapbook line up. We’re currently planning to head towards San Diego, and follow Route One towards Oakland for Beast Crawl Literary Festival 2015. From there, we are shooting along the Northern States towards the 2015 N.Y.C. Poetry Festival.

traveling bookstore

Here is what we do across the country

We’ve been able to distribute hundreds of books, / pieces of art, in our travels. We do not make any $$ doing this. All funds go towards getting us to the next show. Our team is currently composed of Sam Lennon / Neeko Ford / & I, rompusing around, encouraging others on an individual basis to not be afraid to make sacrifices to chase their dreams.  The virus is silence.  Individually, we are whispers.  Collectively, we can be a scream.

If you’d like to donate your publication / zine / broadside / etc, please email jeremiahwalton [at] nostroviatowriting [dot] com, and we will shoot you a mailing address. You can also comment / pm / email me w/ questions.

Shout out to the cats who’ve shown this project much love & support, and props to the NYC Poetry Festival for providing a wonderful event for Books & Shovels to debut at, and continue participating with.  Also to the cat who saved our asses post Kansas car crash, to the folks over in Santa Cruz who filled our bellies when they ached.

We might not be causing mass rifts in peoples’ lives w/ what we’re doing, but the impact we have made on those we have come in contact w/ have kept us going. Passionate Living > Making a Living.  We encourage you to make sacrifices to chase your dreams.  A life well lead doesn’t result without scars.

More information on the bookstore available here @ N!P’s mainsite.  There are photos of our travels, adventures, and background information on the project’s development.

Cheers, nostrovia!

traveling bookstore jeremiah walton

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Chasing the serpent of Route One

Books & Shovels journeyed from Tucson, A.Z., up to the Grand Canyon, and through to Las Vegas, N.V..  From Vegas, we shot to the Bay Area, roaming around the passion & fire of Oakland, swept up in May Day protests, kicking it with open minded creatives, from gutter punks to poets in ties.

We departed the Bay Area after meeting with Nostrovia!’s Chief Bartender & Chapbook Editor, Christopher Morgan, creating plans for the 2015 N.Y.C. Poetry Festival and Books & Shovels 2nd venture along the West Coast, from Southern California to Northern this round.

Along Route One, we went thru Santa Cruz, Moneterey, Carmel, into the beautiful wordly depiction of imagination, Big Sur, down into the crowded desolation of Las Angeles.  We transitioned overnight from sleeping in the back of a truck in downtown L.A. to drinking wine in a 1.6 million dollar home in Orange County.  We were beyond out of place within the community, but hell, we had a great time in those bubbles and free styling.  Neeko + Sam + Hapgood + I all shot towards Redlands, crossing towards California’s deserts for the first time.

I write this in Tucson, A.Z., a home we found unexpectedly during the past couple thousand miles.  Driving back to Tucson felt more like going home than heading back to my New Hampshire roots.  I write this in a downtown cafe under dim lighting, coordinating Books & Shovels’ next tour route, solidifying shows & features, and prepping for our cross country rush from Beast Crawl Literary Festival in Oakland to the N.Y.C. Poetry Festival.

It’s good to be back in the desert.  We’ll be posting a moderately concrete tour route within the upcoming weeks before our departure to the highways at the crack of June.


books and shovels

Oakland family

jeremiah walton

The Grand Canyon was meant to be viewed upside down

grand canyon jeremiah walton

books and shovels

Montery, CA

traveling bookstore books and shovels

Carmel, CA

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Nostrovia! Poetry’s 2015 Chapbook Contest: THREE WINNERS!!!!


Words cannot express how happy Jeremiah and I are to announce our three winners:

  • August Smith’s “Bird Lizard Horse” is a poetry collection with intelligence and depth, leading us to a mournful series from which the collection draws its name.
  • Bob Schofield’s “Moon Facts” is a wild sequence packed full of surreal imagery and unexpected moods to remind us of the unending complexity in everyone’s favorite lunar friend.
  • Sarah Xerta’s “Juliet (II)” continues the powerful series of its title character as she reflects upon her life’s journey with unflinching, lyrical sincerity.

There were many, many amazing manuscripts that only barely missed being selected. Along those lines, Jeremiah and I echo and fully endorse the recent sentiment expressed by Metatron Press, as we simply did not have the means to publish everyone who deserved it–our talented seven finalists have some truly great work, so if you’re a small press looking for some quality writing, I would recommend hitting up these fine writers ;)

Otherwise, Nostrovia! Poetry has already begun working with Kyle Harvey (for beautiful, customized covers) and Craig Mullins (for thoughtfully spec’d printing). We’ll start sending out review copies by the end of May, so PLEASE CONTACT CHRIS IF YOU ARE INTERESTED IN WRITING A REVIEW :D

For more details on the prize, check this earlier article. Again, thank you so much for your continued support of Nostrovia! Poetry–we cannot wait to share these powerful collections in the next few months to come! CHEERS!

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From Tucson to Flagstaff

I am currently typing this article in Flagstaff, Arizona.  I am wearing a battered up leather jacket and a skank wrapped round my neck saturated with desert.  We hit hit the road less than a week ago, cramming five odd ball cats into a small New Hampshire truck.  We alternate three of us up front, two sprawled the truck bed among our frame packs, the bookstore, and our gear.

The landscape from Tucson to Flagstaff molts and changes with the time it takes to stub out a cigarette.   We began in desert herped with cactus and scorpions, making way through six lanes of Phoenix ashes, up thru Sedona and its empty blood hills and valleys, before coming into a vast pine forests wearing the shadows of mountains and the old America vibe glow of Route 66.

Books & Shovels has accumulated new publication since our relaunch at the Tucson Poetry Festival, and our shelves are continuing to grow on our journey.

Once the timer on this public library computer kicks me off, we shoot to the Grand Canyon for a campfire wine rumpus of sorts.  Following the Canyon, we make way for the faux sparkle lust of Vegas.

We’ll continue posting updates as we make our way up to the Bay Area, photos of our adventures, and film from performances / funky campfire gatherings.

books and shovels broken watch flag staff az jirome az sedona 2 sedona ss sedona suinrise on the road truck bed