Common Ground

Publishing-in-Transit: Tender Buttons Press

Editors and Writers in Conversation


1 p.m. Eastern / 10 a.m. Pacific

Writer and critic Cole Swensen joins Lee Ann Brown, poet and founding editor of Tender Buttons Press, alongside authors Anne Waldman and Lucia Hinojosa Gaxiola for a conversation on literary publishing. We conclude with a reading by Brown.

In this talk

Publishing-in-Transit is a new monthly series celebrating contemporary literary editors, all of the often-unrecognized work that they do, and the community-based and conversational nature of contemporary innovative literary publishing. This is our second installment.

View our first installment featuring New York Review Books →

View our third installment featuring New Directions →

View our (upcoming) fourth installment featuring Ugly Duckling Presse →

Cole Swensen

A black and white photo of poet Cole Swensen.
Photo by Anthony Hayward
Poet Cole Swensen is the author of 17 volumes of poetry and a collection of critical essays, Noise That Stays Noise. A book of hybrid poem-essays, Art in Time, was published by Nightboat in 2021. A former Guggenheim Fellow, she has been a finalist for the National Book Award and has been awarded the Iowa Poetry Prize, the SF State Poetry Center Book Award, and the National Poetry Series. She has also translated over 20 volumes of poetry, prose, and art criticism from French and won the 2004 PEN USA Award in Literary Translation.

Lee Ann Brown

A Photo of Lee Ann Brown
Poet, book publisher, and founding editor of Tender Buttons Press, Lee Ann Brown is the author of Other Archer (Presses Universitaires de Rouen et du Havre, 2015), In the Laurels, Caught (Fence Books, 2013), Crowns of Charlotte (Carolina Wren Press, 2013), The Sleep That Changed Everything (Wesleyan, 2003), and Polyverse (Sun & Moon Press, 1999), which won the 1996 New American Poetry Competition, selected by Charles Bernstein. In 1989, Brown founded Tender Buttons Press, which is dedicated to publishing experimental women’s poetry. She has taught at Brown University, Naropa University, Bard College, and elsewhere, and held fellowships with the MacDowell Colony, Yaddo, and others. From 2017–18, she was the Judith E. Wilson Poetry Fellow at Cambridge University.

Anne Waldman

This is a pencil drawn portrait of Poet Anne Waldman with an off-white background, drawn by the Rail’s publisher Phong Bui.
Drawing by Phong Bui
Internationally recognized and acclaimed poet Anne Waldman has been an active member of the “Outrider” experimental poetry community, a culture she has helped create and nurture for over four decades as writer, editor, teacher, performer, magpie scholar, infra-structure curator, and cultural/political activist. Her poetry is recognized in the lineage of Whitman and Ginsberg, and in the Beat, New York School, and Black Mountain trajectories of the New American Poetry, but has raised the bar as a feminist, activist, and powerful performer. She remains a highly original “open field investigator” of consciousness, committed to the possibilities of radical shifts of language and states of mind to create new modal structures and montages of attention.

Lucía Hinojosa Gaxiola

A photo of poet Lucía Hinojosa Gaxiola in front of a tapestry.
Photo by Diego Gerard
Interdisciplinary artist and writer Lucía Hinojosa Gaxiola’s time-based practice develops through ephemeral gestures that result in a corpus of text-based, visual and sound pieces. She’s the artistic director of diSONARE, an experimental editorial project from Mexico City. She recently co-founded Rizoma, a series of performance workshops led by an international poet collective for the imprisoned women of Santiaguito de Almoloya de Juárez, Estado de México. Her book The Telaraña Circuit (Tender Buttons Press) is forthcoming.