About Us


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About Us

Shape&Nature Press is a small, independent publisher of poetry, fiction, and creative literary projects founded in 2011.  Our mission is to publish the best contemporary literature we can find with an emphasis on work that challenges readers, either through content, craft, shape, or ideas.

In addition to publishing traditional books, we are also committed to dreaming up and facilitating creative literary projects that we think open up the literary experience, meaning we want readers to see, touch, taste, read and otherwise engage in literature in ways they haven't done before.  So far, these projects have taken the form of interactive, public art, and have in common the goal of opening literature up to the greater community in new and interesting ways. 

The Editors

Maria Williams-Russell is the author of A Love Letter To Say There Is No Love (FutureCycle Press) and the former director of the Green Street Poetry Series in Northampton, MA. Her poems have appeared in Bateau, Boxcar Poetry Review, Sous Rature, Belleview Literary Review, Chronogram, and other journals and sidewalks. She teaches writing and literature at Greenfield Community College, and is a Pushcart Prize nominee. In the early 90s, Maria was a member of the SICPA theater ensemble, a gorilla theater group in New York City, where her love of creative projects began.

Julia Bouwsma's publishing and editorial credentials include her current position as Poetry Editor for New Plains Press, as well as her past experience serving as Managing Editor for Alice James Books. Now a self-employed editor, writer, and farmer, Julia is the recipient of a fellowship from the Virginia Center for Creative Arts. Her poems and reviews have appeared in Colorado Review, Cutthroat, The Progressive, Sugar House Review, and Quay. Julia lives off-grid on eighty-five acres in the mountains of western Maine.

Andrew Forbes has written extensively about film and music, including liner notes, radio scripts, reviews, and features. He was a co-founder of and contributor to the literary sportswriting website The Barnstormer. His fiction has appeared in The Feathertale Review, Found Press, PRISM International, The New Quarterly, Scrivener Creative Review, The Journey Prize Stories 25, This Magazine, Hobart, and The Puritan. His debut story collection, What You Need, is due in spring, 2015, from Invisible Publishing. He lives in Peterborough, Ontario. For more information, please visit andrewgforbes.com.

Our Designer

Meg Willing is a designer, poet, and artist. She earned her BA from Hampshire College where she studied poetry and book arts. From 2011 to 2012, she was the Editorial Assistant at Alice James Books. She served as Managing Editor at Alice James Books from 2012 to 2013. While at AJB, she fell in love with the cooperative press format and the unique collaborations between author, publisher, and designer that it allows. Meg is currently a freelance designer and serves as the Design and Production Manager for Shape&Nature Press. She resides in the lakes region of Maine. For more information, visit megwilling.com

Advisory Board

Gian Lombardo teaches in the M.A. Publishing program at Emerson College. Five of his collections of prose poetry have been published, the latest being Who Lets Go First, from Swamp Press in 2010. He has also translated the poetry of Louis Bertrand, Michel Delville, Eugene Savitzkaya and Archestratos, among others. He lives on Long Island Sound, where he directs Quale Press.

P. Al Williams is Executive Director of Northampton Community Television in Northampton, MA – www.northamptontv.org. He has 15 years of experience working in all aspects of community media, from production and technical work to administration and consulting. Al has served previously on the board of Mass Access, a state chapter of the Alliance for Community Media, and on the Holyoke Cable Board in Holyoke, MA where he presently resides. He is currently the Vice Chair of the national board of the Alliance for Community Media - www.allcommunitymedia.org. He holds a BA in Philosophy from Boston College with a concentration in writing. Al has been playing harmonica for 20 years, sitting in and working with dozens of regional acts and he has recently begun working towards expanding his repertoire as a visual artist. He is dedicated to supporting all forms of public art and media and works with numerous local arts organizations both professionally and personally. Al also loves beets.

Carolyn Cushing has spent over 20 years of her working life supporting personal, organizational, and social change as a group facilitator, non-profit manager, community college teacher, and researcher. For nearly a decade, she has worked with Spirit in Action, a non-profit dedicated to bringing spirit into activism, healing divisions between people and groups, fostering positive vision, and promoting action for deep and lasting change. She holds a Masters of Science in Management from Antioch New England. Carolyn is also a poet and the director of Art of Change Tarot.

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