Category Archives: Literature and the Environment

Torrey House Press Welcomes Alisha Anderson

With fire in her eyes, Terry Tempest Williams enthusiastically took hold of Torrey House Press publisher and executive director Kirsten Allen’s arm. It was late November 2015 and Terry and Kirsten were at Back of Beyond Book’s silver anniversary party … Continue reading

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Filling a gap

We live in a gorgeous spot on a beautiful planet that teeters at a tipping point. Human-caused problems threaten land and sea environments everywhere. Problems like global warming, ocean acidification, and public lands mismanagement. Many of the problems persist because … Continue reading

Posted in Conservation, Environmental, Literature and the Environment, Publishing | 3 Comments

Conservation through conversation

The original impetus behind Torrey House Press was the idea that we could promote love of the land through literature. We jumped in with both feet, believing that by publishing great books, our start-up literary press would be self-supporting through book … Continue reading

Posted in Book Review, Conservation, Literature and the Environment, Publishing | Tagged , , | 4 Comments

Considering going nonprofit

Torrey House was founded on the principle that literature is a primary influence and creator of culture. When Wallace Stegner spoke of creating a society to match our scenery in the West he was talking about hope and that when we learn … Continue reading

Posted in Literature and the Environment, Nature Writing, Publishing | Tagged | 2 Comments

NGO’s, authors, booksellers, and why we publish

Kirsten and I drove from Torrey to Durango this week to see Scott Graham’s book launch of Mountain Rampage at Maria’s Bookshop.  We hoped to catch up with Scott and his wife Sue, see Peter and Andrea the owners of … Continue reading

Posted in Conservation, Environment, Independent Bookstores, Literature and the Environment, Public land management | 4 Comments

Pill in the hamburger

Last October, while Kirsten and I were on the road peddling our Torrey House wares, we were walking down the streets of Taos, straight into the setting sun, looking for a place to have dinner. A stranger was walking toward … Continue reading

Posted in Book Review, Conservation, Environment, Literature and the Environment, Nature Writing, Public land management, THP Blog, topical nonfiction, West | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Truth and false balance

Kirsten and I started Torrey House Press in 2010 as we started to gain appreciation and concern for a lack of public awareness of public land management and environmental issues, particularly here on all our public land in the West.  We … Continue reading

Posted in Howl, Literature and the Environment, Nature Writing, Public land management, Publishing, susan imhoff bird, West, Wolves | 6 Comments

Today’s Transcendentalists

Have you ever been overcome by a sense of awe and wonder? Perhaps outside watching the sun set over a roiling ocean or watching the Milky Way spin overhead on a moonless night? Perhaps you had a sense that you … Continue reading

Posted in Book Review, Conservation, Environment, Independent Bookstores, Literature and the Environment, Nature Writing, Publishing, Transformative Power of Natural Places | 1 Comment

Green Shorts, Charles Manson, and Literature and Conservation in the West

This piece originally appeared in The Wildlife News. Ten years ago I read Michael Chrichton’s novel State of Fear. While far from his best work, it was his usual roller coaster of a techno-thriller. And, rather strangely, it was blatantly … Continue reading

Posted in Book Review, Conservation, Environment, Kirsten, Literature and the Environment, Nature Writing, Public land management, West, Western Lit | Leave a comment

Two Good Men

Two men stand silhouetted against an  sublime sunset, scholars perhaps, contemplating their place in the cosmos.  Such is the cover image,suggested by author Scott Abbott, by 19th -century German Romantic landscape painter, Caspar David Friedrich.  Friedrich’s paintings characteristically set a … Continue reading

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Why Culture Matters

The day I realized I am a Westerner, I was in New York City. I was visiting family in my hometown and bent down to talk to my three-year-old in what felt like a miniature grocery store aisle. Crouching among … Continue reading

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House of Western Lit and Literature and the Environment

The news that J.K. Rowling’s latest fiction title had sold only 500 copies in the months it was out before the word leaked that she was the author using a pseudonym left us feeling a strange mix of hope and … Continue reading

Posted in Environmental, Literature and the Environment, Nature Writing, Publishing, Western Lit | Tagged , , | 3 Comments

Green Shorts

Amazon has their Kindle Singles, Torrey House is launching our own Green Shorts series.  We are calling for submissions of environmentally oriented fiction and narrative nonfiction that is longer than a typical blog and shorter than a book, say 10,000 … Continue reading

Posted in Conservation, Ecology and Economy, Environment, Excellent Essays, Literature and the Environment, Nature Writing, Publishing | 4 Comments

Leaning In to Nonfiction

There’s nothing like fiction, but it is hard to sell.  They told us it would be but we had to see for ourselves. Our title, The Legend’s Daughter, by David Kranes is out.  Kranes’ stories are so good  he was … Continue reading

Posted in Environment, Literature and the Environment, Nature Writing, Publishing | Leave a comment

Environmental, Topical Nonfiction Can Make a Difference

Politicians are often behind, out of step with, and going in a different direction from the people they represent.  In Paul Hawken’s book Blessed Unrest, Hawken suggests there is a global movement afoot fostering environmental health and social justice that … Continue reading

Posted in Book Review, Conservation, Ecology and Economy, Literature and the Environment, Nature Writing, Publishing | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Call for Environmental Nonfiction

At Torrey House we are wrapping up our first publication season with national distribution to the book trade and we continue to learn.  We have seven titles out and three ready for the upcoming spring/summer season.  Two of the forthcoming … Continue reading

Posted in Conservation, Ecology and Economy, Environment, Literature and the Environment, Nature Writing, Publishing | Tagged , , , | 6 Comments

You Okay with Nature Writing?

In 1999, at a gathering organized by The Orion Society, Barry Lopez read a poem by D.H. Lawrence.  After the reading Lopez paused for effect and then stated, “D.H. Lawrence, nature writer.”  Laughter ensued.  This episode is mentioned in an … Continue reading

Posted in Environment, Literature and the Environment, Nature Writing, Publishing | 1 Comment

Consonance

This fall we will publish Jana Richman’s next novel, The Ordinary Truth.  The backdrop theme of the novel is based on the real life tension between the urban and rural West as the Southern Nevada Water Authority, the water agency … Continue reading

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Love Letters

Kirsten and I spent the weekend in New York City to attend our distributor’s (Consortium) fall season sales conference.  New York has always worn a little rough on me and this trip was the usual.  Friday evening we were working … Continue reading

Posted in Conservation, Literature and the Environment, Nature Writing, Publishing | 3 Comments

Way of Life

The more I learn about the way public lands are being managed in the West the more I realize how the public is in the dark about it.  I just finished revising the language on our Submission Guidelines page and … Continue reading

Posted in Conservation, Environment, Literature and the Environment, Nature Writing, Public land management | Tagged , , | 5 Comments

THP is a One Year Old!

Torrey House Press was one year old last month.  We got our first book out, Crooked Creek by Maximilian Werner, and it is a hit with the literary critic types.  It has been less so with the paying public and … Continue reading

Posted in Conservation, Environmental, Literature and the Environment, Nature Writing, Publishing, West, Western Lit | 5 Comments

Wilderness and the American Mind

Another book I borrowed from my son’s college reading list is Roderick Frazier Nash’s Wilderness and the American Mind.  It ends much the same as Oelschlaeger’s The Idea of Wilderness that I spoke of in my previous blog.  Nash concludes … Continue reading

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Publishing for a Cause

My kids keep on teaching me.  I just returned home on Sunday from my son Nick’s graduation from Prescott College in Prescott, Arizona.  Nick has earned a degree in Environmental Studies with an emphasis on Ecological Design.  My son and … Continue reading

Posted in Conservation, Environment, Environmental, Literature and the Environment, Nature Writing, Publishing, Western Lit | Tagged , , | 6 Comments

Still a Struggle

Yosemite Valley is still there to enjoy because these guys really liked to get outside.  And being outside so much shaped their lives into greatness.  Last night Kirsten and I watched the PBS American Masters documentary on John Muir.  We … Continue reading

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How Separate are Man and Nature?

The other night my wife Kirsten and I invited my folks over for dinner to celebrate my father’s 79th birthday. My Dad was raised in rural Nephi, Utah, then went on to the University of Utah, got married and went … Continue reading

Posted in Ecology and Economy, Environmental, Literature and the Environment, Nature Writing, THP Blog | 2 Comments

Singing Stone

Singing Stone by Thomas Lowe Fleischner Reviewed by Mark Bailey Thomas Lowe Fleischner is a conservation biologist and former park ranger, a professor of environmental studies at Prescott College in Prescott, Arizona, and a naturalist in the Escalante region for … Continue reading

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The Milagro Beanfield War

The Milagro Beanfield War, by John Nichols Reviewed by A.J. Martine John Nichols sets magical realism in the hills and mountains of north-central New Mexico in The Milagro Beanfield War. Nichols spins a story about a people hiding from time … Continue reading

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The River Why

The River Why by David James Duncan Reviewed by Mark Bailey At the end of The River Why, Gus, David James Duncan’s narrator explains that he wrote the book just so we could fully appreciate the last scene. Creating that … Continue reading

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Angle of Repose

I wrote a thesis on Wallace Stegner’s use of landscape in college, and my son, Matt, read from Stegner’s Wilderness Letter at my recent marriage in Capitol Reef. My experience with Stegner’s writing feels like my relationship with the land: … Continue reading

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The Monkey Wrench Gang

When I am asked what we like to publish at THP I often respond I am looking for the next Edward Abbey. I was in college in the 1970’s at the University of Utah in Salt Lake City when I … Continue reading

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