Loyal as a Book #6

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

One Month in a Nepalese Monastery

A Letter From Gandhi to Hitler

Quiz: Which famous author said this about writing?

Sunday Bloody Sunday

The 228 ways to call someone drunk in 1736

“Totally unoriginal, feebly plotted, instantly forgettable.”

Why do we need art?

Christmas in a Siberian labour camp, with Dostoevsky

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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.


Like words?

Rambles: In My Own Way, by Alan Watts

Dane Johnson is a freelance writer, currently based in San Francisco, where he dedicates his time to reading and writing. For one year, he’s determined to read a book every week and share a book report – both reliving his favorite homework from grade school, and tackling a reading list that has been “growing out of control”. These...

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Rambles: In My Own Way, by Alan WattsDane Johnson

“It was like a genie out of the bottle...

The following eulogy for Mikhail Kalashnikov is taken from Dead People, an essay collection co-authored by Stefany Anne Golberg and Morgan Meis. A book of 28 eulogies covering an eclectic assortment of the recently deceased – from Christopher Hitchens to Kurt Cobain to Osama bin Laden – Dead People was published in June of 2016 by Zero Books. Morgan and Stefany are both founding members of Flux...

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“It was like a genie out of the bottle, and it began to walk all on its own and in directions I did not want.”Matt

Loyal as a Book #2

“There is no friend as loyal as a book.” – Ernest Hemingway Misfit Press’s Loyal as a Book series is composed of short, illuminating interviews with readers. It uncovers and explores the reading lives of people from across the globe, coming from all walks of life. Currently residing in Missoula, MT, Ryan Nicodemus was born 1981 in Knoxville, TN....

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Loyal as a Book #2Matt

What does it mean to be Human?

Recently, on a quiet Tuesday night, I crawled into bed with a bottle of wine and watched Human, by French reporter and filmmaker Yann Arthus-Bertrand: one of the most intense and compelling documentaries I’ve seen to date. Over the course of three years, Bertrand travelled across 65 countries, speaking to over 2,000 people from across the globe in...

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What does it mean to be Human?Clare

Loyal as a Book #1

“There is no friend as loyal as a book.” – Ernest Hemingway Misfit Press’s Loyal as a Book series is composed of short, illuminating interviews with readers. It uncovers and explores the reading lives of people from across the globe, coming from all walks of life. Emily Millen grew up in a small town called Bridgenorth in Ontario, Canada. She has lived...

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Loyal as a Book #1Matt

“The window that literature opens to u...

Two years ago, I read a novel called Stoner. I knew nothing about it, other than that it starred a university professor, and that the cover carried a big sticker marking it out as Waterstones’ ‘Book of the Year’. To my surprise – the first few pages seemed rather sedate, presaging a slow, possibly even dull...

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“The window that literature opens to us; to our selves, and to our souls.”Matt

Announcing: Christopher Ryan’s Tan...

This May, Misfit Press is thrilled to announce another forthcoming publication. Tangentially Reading will be the book tie-in to Tangentially Speaking, the popular podcast from bestselling author Dr. Christopher Ryan. Chris is best-known for his 2010 book, Sex at Dawn. Co-authored with his wife, Cacilda Jethá, Sex at Dawn spent three weeks on The New York Times best-seller list. It was described by Dan Savage as...

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Announcing: Christopher Ryan’s Tangentially Speaking Book Tie-InMatt

Quiz: Match the Iconic Cover to the Book

Recently, we’ve been having a lot of fun designing the cover for our upcoming publication, Destination Shakespeare, and we figured what better way to seek inspiration than by studying some of the most iconic book covers ever created? We thought you might be inspired by these too, so we’re delighted to bring you the second of our monthly quizzes: Match the...

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Quiz: Match the Iconic Cover to the BookClare

Not Judging a Book by its Cover

Denise Brennan owns and runs Creative Coworkers, the coworking studio where Misfit Press plies its trade. We invited her to be the first guest contributor to our blog and to share her stories about the studio’s neighbourhood – Vancouver’s complex Downtown Eastside. In this post, she tells us how her experience of living here affects...

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Not Judging a Book by its CoverDenise Brennan

“He is always on the side of life&...

On April 24th, as part of Shakespeare’s birthday/deathday celebrations, Misfit Press author Paul Edmondson took part in the Sunday service at Stratford’s Holy Trinity Church – burial site of the Bard. Recorded by BBC Radio 4, the service was a grand affair. In his role as local Reverend and renowned Shakespeare scholar, Paul delivered...

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“He is always on the side of life”Matt

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