fence books

Fence Digital Book Design by James belflower

Recently I launched Fence Digital, the electronic imprint of Fence Books. Working with Rebecca Wolff, we are planning to release as many books as possible as often as possible. We are in the process of looking for new books suited to a digital environment, so find us over at Fence Digital.

If you missed my editorial note that went out a few days ago, here it is. 

The idea that we coevolve through intimate interactions with our virtual media is both joyous and terrifying. Here at Fence Books, we choose to bedevil this evolution further by launching Fence Digital, a new electronic publishing imprint that reinserts materiality into the digital.

To that end, our projects reevaluate the boundary between the virtual nature of digital information and the viscerality of text. When designing books, we think of the project in print, but we also consider how digital extra-textual qualities (video, image, animation, hyperlinks, etc.) might contribute to its textualization. In short, we design with attention to how a reader’s swipe interacts with a digital book as something that happens rather than something that exists.

So, with the first three books from Fence Digital, we encourage you to coevolve with us: swipe across the rubber typed pages of Michael Leong’s Who Unfolded My Origami Brain?, the handwritten postcards sent on Brian Young’s road trip in Moonie, and the floating feather through Matthew Klane’s My.

Download all these books and more at Fence Digital or on iBooks.


James Belflower



Microclimate Review: My God Is This a Man by Laura Sims by James belflower


 Original cover art for My God Is This is Man by Alessandro Guttenberg

Tag clouds are designed to show the frequency of word usage in a text by enlarging words based on how many times they occur. Microclimate Reviews, however, are hand-selected tag clouds that operate like weather systems, turbulent and resonate across the text. Frequency therefore becomes a microclimate in which one’s personal selection intuits a visual and spatial map of the verbal atmospheres entangled in the pages.

Laura Sims is the author of three books of poetry: My god is this a manStranger, and Practice, Restraint (Fence Books); her fourth collection, Staying Alive, is forthcoming from Ugly Duckling Presse in 2016. She edited  Fare Forward: Letters from David Markson, a book of her correspondence with the celebrated experimental novelist (powerHouse Books), and has also published five chapbooks of poetry.  Her work was included in the anthology, The City Visible: Chicago Poetry for the New Century, and individual poems have recently appeared in the journals:  AufgabeBlack ClockBlack Warrior ReviewColorado Review, Crayon, and Denver Quarterly. She has published book reviews and essays in Boston Review, Evening Will Come, Jacket, New England Review, Rain Taxi and The Review of Contemporary Fiction.

Sims’s first book, Practice, Restraint, was awarded the 2005 Fence Books Alberta Prize, and in 2006, she received a JUSFC Creative Artists Exchange Fellowship to live in Tokyo. Sims is a graduate of the College of William and Mary. She received a Master of Fine Arts from University of Washington in 2000, and she is now an adjunct professor of creative writing and literature at NYU-SCPS. She has been a featured writer for the Poetry Foundation’s Harriet blog, and has been a co-editor of Instance Press with poets Elizabeth Robinson, Susanne Dyckman, and Beth Anderson since 2009. She lives with her family in Brooklyn.