I was in New York recently and there was one place I had to go. It was a blazing late summer afternoon, but I made my way through Brooklyn and found this place.
What was it?
Located in a small arts studio space, this was the library of my dreams. It was full of legendary titles I had heard about, but had never read or seen physical copies.
Like this Blake Butler, M. Kitchell, and Ken Baumann one.
Here’s a beautiful cover of ‘Summer Purgatory’ by Adam Humphreys. I have the e-book, but had never seen this cover before.
Then there were tons of others, like the new one by Mike Young on Big Lucks or ‘Normally Special’ by xTx or the hefty new Mike Bushnell poetry book or a cut-up edition of ‘Crunk Juice’ by Steve Roggenbuck.
I can’t afford all the books I want. And the publicly financed libraries aren’t supporting this type of literature. To foster community, we’re going to have to take this stuff upon ourselves to get this stuff out there. Obviously, the Internet has connected us. But we have to take a few more steps and follow the lead of places like Mellow Pages or Vouched Books or my city’s own EastSide Story.
Those places–either as a library or store–are creating new communities around books. Let’s face it: most people don’t know these books exist.
And instead of depending on people to seek it out, we have to think of ways to bring it to them.