The little book publisher that could

Hats off to Graywolf Press for another unlikely success. The small St. Paul, Minn.-based publisher is now quickly printing up 100,000 copies of Elizabeth Alexander's "Praise Song for the Day: A Poem for Barack Obama's Presidential Inauguration."

Alexander has been a Graywolf author since 2001 – long before anyone imagined that one day she'd be reciting her work before the eyes of much of the world.

But picking well has become one of the trademarks of Graywolf. They are a tiny, nonprofit press specializing in literary fiction, poetry and essays. But they have received praise and attention for acquiring winning titles such as Salvatore Scibona's "The End" (a National Book Award nominee) and the US rights to Norwegian writer Per Petterson's novel "Out Stealing Horses" (a literary mega-hit of 2007.)

"If there's one thing they've done, it's to have built an expectation that when a new book comes out from Graywolf it's going to be a good book," Jeffrey Lependorf, director of the New York City-based Council of Literary Magazines and Presses told the Associated Press.

The whole AP story on Graywolf Press can be seen here.

And Chapter & Verse readers, please remember that the Monitor’s weekly Books podcast is now available at iTunes. To download, just go to this link at iTunes:

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