I wrote this short overview at the request of F.J. Bergman, editor of Star*Line. It appeared in the Fall 2015 issue as the "first (?) in a possible series of articles in which poets tell exactly how much money they (didn’t) make with their poetry books, with details about offers and arrangements."
When I lived in New York City, it was understood that you never talked specifics about your salary or your rent, not even with your closest friends. Except that sometimes you did, to help each other find a good deal or give each other a sense of what was fair and what was outlandish. That’s the spirit in which I write this article. It seems a bit uncouth to talk about the actual money figures for poetry publishing, but luckily, the amounts are so insignificant that no one will be able to accuse me of bragging; at the same time, they’re so common and expected, from what I can tell, that no one will be able to accuse me of complaining, either. Indeed, my experiences with these presses were all good, sometimes great.