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6 Songs About Authors

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About Us

(The story of Misfit Press is inextricably linked to the story of Misfit Incorporated, which is inextricably linked to the story of AJ and Melissa Leon. These fascinating stories have been told at length on many other occasions – in newspapers, on TEDx stages, during numerous interviews and chance meetings in wine bars. If you want to explore the weird and wonderful company that is Misfit Incorporated, peruse our site. For the full backstory, check out this video interview.)

Misfit Press itself was established in 2014, with the publication of AJ Leon’s The Life & Times of a Remarkable Misfit. The little-known backstory to The Life & Times is that it was originally slated to be published by a major American publisher, who headhunted AJ after noticing the popularity of his blog, The Pursuit of Everything. About a third of the way through the writing of the book, AJ began to get twitchy about the compromises involved in traditional publishing: uncompromising editorial pressure, a lack of say on issues such as design and artwork. Not long later, AJ bailed on the contract, and decided to publish the book himself. The Misfit team created and ran a Kickstarter, aimed at raising $15,000 to cover publishing costs. By the time the fundraising had run its course, pledges totalled more than treble that amount. With the excess funds, AJ and Misfit decided to go one better than just publishing a book, and also founded a publishing house.

Since its founding, Misfit Press has steadily flourished. In 2015, we took under our wing Wolftree, the finest arts journal in the American Midwest; we released our 2015 Anthology, featuring the finest creative work we encountered over the preceding year; and The Life & Times of a Remarkable Misfit continued to find readers across the globe. In 2016 we published Destination Shakespeare, the debut poetry collection from esteemed Shakespeare academic Paul Edmondson; and we have more Shakespeare-related publications in the works for 2017, including Shakespeare On The Road, a tale of a Shakespearian adventure across the US.

Last  year was a big growth period for the Press, and there is lots more on the way for 2017. As you’ll see from our Forthcoming Publications section, over the next twelve months we will be publishing Saya Sayama: Three Years in Myanmar by incredible photojournalist Spike Johnson, a photonarrative account documenting a unique moment in Myanmar’s history: the violent shift from General Ne Win’s fifty-year dictatorship to the country’s first steps towards democracy. Also imminent is Tangentially Reading, featuring some of the most insightful, shocking, touching, and hilarious moments from the first 200 episodes of Christopher Ryan’s much-loved podcast, Tangentially Speaking.

These are exciting times at Misfit Press. To keep up to date with everything that’s going on, follow us at our blogFacebook, Twitter and/or Instagram. Into the future, we will always continue to work in the fashion we do right now: with authors we like, on projects that matter, in a way that leaves writer, reader and everyone in-between satisfied. We will also never renege on our One-for-One pledge; for every publication we ever sell, a child in India will receive money towards prescription eyeglasses, via the Misfit Foundation.

w: Clare

6 Songs About Authors"God who'd want to be such an a**hole?”

Rarer than songs inspired by books or the written word are songs inspired by the writers of the work themselves. From larger than life characters like Charles Bukowski or Jack Kerouac, to the brilliant and tragic Sylvia Plath – these are authors whose interior lives have often been the topic of intense scrutiny and speculation. But when these musings (or in certain cases, character assassinations) are paired with a decent beat, they can make for some catchy pop songs. So here we have it: songs written by artists, inspired by artists. These are six of our top songs written about authors.

Click the title of the song to listen to it in all its glory, or scroll to the end of the quote for the link to the full lyrics. You can also listen to the full playlist on Spotify here.

Good News For People Who Love Bad News Good News for People Who Love
Bukowski – Modest Mouse

Album: Good News for People Who Love Bad News

Released in: 2004

“Woke up this morning and it seemed to me,

That every night turns out to be

A little more like Bukowski.

And yeah, I know he’s a pretty good read.

But God who’d want to be?

God who’d want to be such an a**hole?

God who’d want to be?

God who’d want to be such an a**hole?”

Read the full lyrics here.


Ryan Adams - Gold

Sylvia Plath – Ryan Adams

Album: Gold

Released: 2001

“I wish I had a Sylvia Plath

Busted tooth and a smile

And cigarette ashes in her drink

The kind that goes out and then sleeps for a week

The kind that goes out on her

To give me a reason, for well, I dunno

And maybe she’d take me to France

Or maybe to Spain and she’d ask me to dance

In a mansion on the top of a hill

She’d ash on the carpets

And slip me a pill

Then she’d get pretty loaded on gin

And maybe she’d give me a bath

How I wish I had a Sylvia Plath”

Read the full lyrics here.


Fink - Hard Believer

Shakespeare – Fink

Album: Hard Believer

Released: 2014

“Oh why, oh why do they teach us Shakespeare

When you’re only 16, with no idea, what it all means

Oh Romeo, oh Romeo he thinks it’s a love thing

All masks and kisses from the balcony

It’s deeper than that bro, it’s a fuckin’ tragedy

Oh you, taught me so much about you

Taught me so much about love

And yet I learn nothing.”

Read the full lyrics here.


Indigo Girls - Rites of Passage
Virginia Woolf – Indigo Girls

Album: Rites of Passage

Released: 1992

“They published your diary

And that’s how I got to know you

The key to the room of your own and a mind without end

And here’s a young girl

On a kind of a telephone line through time

And the voice at the other end comes like a long lost friend

So I know I’m all right

Life will come and life will go

Still I feel it’s all right

Cause I just got a letter to my soul

And when my whole life is on the tip of my tongue

Empty pages for the no longer young

The apathy of time laughs in my face

Read the full lyrics here.


In My Tribe

“Hey Jack Kerouac” (10,000 Maniacs)

Album: In My Tribe

Released: 1987

“Hey Jack Kerouac, I think of your mother

and the tears she cried, she cried for none other

than her little boy lost in our little world that hated

and that dared to drag him down. Her little boy courageous

who chose his words from mouths of babes got lost in the wood.

Hip flask slinging madman, steaming cafe flirts,

they all spoke through you.

Hey Jack, now for the tricky part,

when you were the brightest star who were the shadows?

Read the full lyrics here.



ee cummings – Timesbold

Album: Timesbold

Released: 2002

“Me up at does

out of the floor

quietly stare

a poisoned mouse

still who alive

is asking what have i done that you wouldn’t have

what have i done that you wouldn’t have

stare through window

window is cracked

weight of the world

twists through your back

alone you will stand

stars take the skies

hide me good

and we’ll survive

what have i done that you wouldn’t have

Read the full lyrics here.

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ClareClare is Assistant Editor at Misfit Press. She enjoys taking pictures with a variety of strange cameras, chasing after cats, drinking pale ale and exploring new places.

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Batman: Urban Radical, Delinquent, Resistance Fighter

Loyal as a Book #6

David Beckham, Paul Gascoigne, and the fates of the famous

Misfit Press