PT publisher back at it again with LeGuin

Posted 6/7/21

Winter texts is back at it again with a collection of Ursula K. Le Guin.

The collection, “Into the Desert, Across the Ice,” will feature three short stories along with a closing poem …

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PT publisher back at it again with LeGuin

Posted

Winter texts is back at it again with a collection of Ursula K. Le Guin.

The collection, “Into the Desert, Across the Ice,” will feature three short stories along with a closing poem from Le Guin’s final collection.

Included in this compilation will be Le Guin’s 1987 tale, “Buffalo Gals, Won’t You Come Out Tonight,” a magical story about a young girl who gets adopted by a coyote; the 1985 “She Unnames Them” about Eve’s departure from Eden and how she unnames all of creation upon her exit; and the story, “Sur,” published in 1982, which describes a group of South American women who journey to the South Pole.

Aside from being buried in large textbook anthologies, this is the first time these three stories have coexisted together in the same binding.

“It was a fun project to work on,” said Winter texts’ publisher and Port Townsend resident Conner Bouchard-Roberts.

“These are three little short stories that I am enamored with. They’re great stories and they’re all very different, too.”

It may look like a small book, but it contains brave, female-centric stories rich in vivid details and vibrant ideas.

“I think they play off each other really well,” the publisher explained.

He said the goal was to make these very different stories more accessible to everyday readers.

“They’re all different genres. They’re all different writing modes. But they all deal deeply with this idea of naming, naming properly, what it means to be named.”

“They all are about journeys or departures on a journey,” he added.

With the release of “Hernes” earlier this year, the Port Townsend-based publisher is on its way to becoming the one-stop shop for new editions of the writer’s work.

Bouchard-Roberts described working on both Le Guin publications as very separate experiences.

“It’s been very different,” he said, “With Hernes, I typed it all out and I just engaged with that text for so long.”

He described it as a long and laborious process, but also a more personal project.

“[‘Into the Desert, Across the Ice’] is a little less personal,” he added.

Bouchard-Roberts was able to focus on the collection and how the stories were presented, taking the time to write a preface and give a name to the anthology.

“It was a broader engagement with her ideas,” he said.

Compared to “Hernes,” the stories in this work are not quite as grand.

“They’re not as sweeping,” Bouchard-Roberts said, “but in their brevity and their way that they use genre are maybe more incisive or more telling.”

That readers will find something special in them, Bouchard-Roberts hopes that these stories can be held onto for a little while.

“And if it leads [readers] to more LeGuin stories, that’ll be very cool,” he added.

“Personally, why I’m trying to publish more Ursula Le Guin is not for the sort of fame or reputation thing; I think that she is just a Northwestern writer who engages with a lot of ideas that would be valuable for us to carry forward in the next 20 years,” Bouchard-Roberts explained.

“She is a Northwesterner … she’s kind of just with us around here, walking on the coastline and trying to figure out what it means to inherit a piece of land.”

“Into the Desert, Across the Ice” is hot off the press now. It is available for order on wintertexts.com and will soon be gracing the shelves at Port Townsend’s Imprint Bookstore.

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