A Staircase of Words, Volume One
Derek Beres & Dax-Devlon Ross
In his introduction to his latest book of essays, Another Day on the Front, Ishmael Reed compares essay writing to sparring in a gym all day. I couldn’t agree more. Essays are the writer’s calisthenics. They’re not as ‘glamorous’ as novels, as ‘important’ as political tomes, as ‘serious’ as books of history and journalism, as ‘self-indulgent’ as memoirs, as ‘affecting’ as books of poetry, or as ‘marketable’ as self-help books. Notwithstanding these ‘shortcomings’ they are necessary to both readers and writers. Essays keep writers sharp, fit, ready to meet the task of sorting out the world, de-mystifying it, eliminating the illusions we live by and so forth. They’re where writers get to speak without artifice or literary pretense to an audience hungry for searching, stumbling, but always steadfast voice of a kindred spirit. – from Dax’s introduction
What Do You Believe?
Derek Beres, editor
The first Outside the Box Publishing anthology began with one not-so-simple question put forth by founders Derek Beres & Dax-Devlon Ross to: What do you believe? This collection is comprised of 29 answers in forms ranging from long and critical essays to haikus and emails. That such a seemingly basic question could provide such a wide range of possibilities is proof of the power of questioning. It is impossible to read this book and not pose the very same question to yourself, and with any luck, witness just how much the nature of belief informs you, and how meaningful a question it truly is. This volume includes contributions by N. Frank Daniels, Jeff Tamarkin, Jill Ettinger, Jeff Gamble, Andrew Gandolfo, Erica DeLorenzo, Mark Gorney, Caroline Leavitt, William Doty, Sasha Dmochowski, Dax-Devlon Ross and Derek Beres.