Independent publishing is often a labor of love—it’s rare to find those involved tooling around town in new BMWs. The reward, though, can be found in the freedom to express passion and take risks without the worry of having ideas shot down by a board of faceless suits. For the 17th year in a row, the nonprofit Small Press Center celebrates these independent spirits and allows them to showcase the fruits of their labor. In addition to having the chance to browse titles from nearly 150 diverse, small, and indie presses, fairgoers will have the opportunity to attend a number of fascinating readings, discussions, and presentations. Among them, Sam Tanenhaus, The New York Times Book Review editor, discusses his first six months on the job and explains his reviewing process. Actor and playwright Wallace Shawn; actor Brendan Sexton III (Welcome to the Dollhouse); and others read selections from Voices of a People’s History of the United States, edited by Howard Zinn and Anthony Arnove. David Rees, creator of the scathing Get Your War On cartoon series, offers a presentation of his work with commentary. Artists Abe Lincoln Jr., whose egg-shaped bird characters pop up in the oddest of outdoor places, and Swoon, whose intricate paper cutout posters adorn the facades of many run-down Brooklyn buildings, join others for a panel discussion entitled “Street Seen: Documenting Street Art.” And Joe Gardner and Mike Loew, writers for The Onion and authors of Citizen You, face off with The Daily Show‘s head writer, DJ Javerbaum, in a post-election “fake” debate—which, considering what transpired a month ago, should provide some much needed comic relief.
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on November 23, 2004