"I’m talking about getting brutally weird again. I’m talking about doing art that’s beyond cooptation.
I’m talking about forging new myths. I’m talking about creative resistance that scares the shit out of the
rich robots, Sex in the City slaves, stockbrokers, cultural gatekeepers, and pigs in power. I’m talking
about dangerous expression that’ll make Todd and Ashley think long and hard about moving into the ‘hood and
exposing their little banker to the new hip warriors of the American night."
-Jason Flores-Williams, 'A Farewell to CBGB'
It’s depressing: our cultural beacons have been hijacked and transformed and de-valued. Their light is diminished,
their currency is no longer valid.
We live in an inspiring age. The corporate ideology has run its course in book publishing, which spells the
death of print to many. But as evidenced by the bevy of awards (including Nobels, National Book Awards, and Pulitzers), the best-sellers,
and the critical acclaim of the work being done consistently by independent presses, literature can
succeed in the digital age on a responsible scale.
The idea is to restore literature's standing in today's culture. It's possible. See Barney Rosset at Grove. See
John Martin at Black Sparrow Press. There was the belief that literature could inspire and inform and sway
culture. Our hope is to do our part in reaffirming the cultural and artistic spirit of literary culture.
Two Dollar Radio
was founded in 2005. The original impetus came on the heels of reading Andre Schiffrin’s
The Business of Books
The name has its origins in a San Diego bar, when the bartender/publisher was ignoring a belligerent old man who blurted out,
“Don’t mind me, I make more noise than a two-dollar radio.” We tacked on the ‘Movement’ part to the name because we didn’t
want to rule out future endeavors into music, film, and the visual arts.
Two Dollar Radio
is a boutique publisher who functions on a no-wasted bullets policy. You won’t find jokebooks or
bathroom readers camouflaged in our lists. In the work we publish, we value ambition above all, and believe that none
of our books crimp to convention when it comes to storytelling or voice. Ideally, that contributes to a liberating reading
experience. Our primary interest lies with what we would characterize as bold literary fiction: subversive, original, and
Two Dollar Radio
-published books have been honored by the National Book Foundation, picked as 'Editors' Choice'
selections by The New York Times Book Review
, and made year-end best-of lists at O: The Oprah
, Time Out New York
, and The Believer
. They've received praise from
The Brooklyn Rail
for publishing "some of the finest works of contemporary fiction in the past
few years," and The Los Angeles Times
for providing the industry with "an air of possibility, the belief
that the future was very much in play." The Seattle Stranger
envisioned them leading a "dream
industry" out of the wreckage of corporate publishing.
Among the celebrated artists who have contributed cover artwork for Two Dollar Radio titles are Barbara Kruger
(The Shanghai Gesture
), Aubrey Perry (Termite Parade
), Xylor Jane (Baby Geisha
Mat Brinkman (The Orange Eats Creeps
), John Gagliano (Frequencies
), Ricardo Cavolo
(How To Get Into the Twin Palms
), and Lynn Davis (The Drop Edge of Yonder, Nog, Flats/Quake
The press made waves in Brazil in 2011, when Francis Levy's second novel, Seven Days in Rio
government officials to request an official apology for the book's publication from the U.S. Embassy.
Aparecida Gonçalves, the secretary for combating violence against women, a government body that reports
to the presidency, was quoted in Brazil's most prominent daily newspaper, O Globo
, as saying that
Brazilians should be "treated well, even in fiction."
Two Dollar Radio
is based in Columbus, Ohio.
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BRIAN OBENAUF - Senior Rights & Marketing Director
Any questions regarding foreign/translation rights or advertising, please contact Brian at
ELIZA WOOD - Editor / Art Director
Eliza graduated from New York University with a Fine Arts Education degree. She has taught in the New York City public school
system, and was a literacy tutor with Literacy*AmeriCorps.
EMILY PULLEN - Interviews Editor / Frequencies
Emily has lived in New York, Los Angeles, Boston, Ecuador, and Grinnell, though she is proudly
"from" Des Moines, Iowa. Her first job out of high school was as a letter carrier for the United
States Postal Service, which she would be happy to talk your ear off about. She has been involved
with the book business since 2004 and is currently the manager of WORD, a bookstore in Brooklyn.
ERIC OBENAUF - Editor in Chief / Publisher
Eric has received the Venable Herndon Award for Screenwriting. His writing has appeared in
The Brooklyn Rail,
The Millions, The Rumpus, and on The Billfold. In 2008, at the age of 26, Eric
and Eliza were included in Publishers Weekly's '50 Under 40' list, which spotlighted 50 individuals
under age 40 working in publishing worth watching.
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Publishing Perspectives, 2/8/13
'Overturning the "Lemonade-stand Culture of Literature"'
by David Duhr
"A budding literary movement."
'4 Great Indie Publishers to Start Reading Right Now'
by Alexander Kalamaroff
"Book for book, nobody beats Two Dollar Radio."
by Joshua Chaplinsky
"Two Dollar Radio is more than just shiny artwork and sex appeal. Two of the biggest contributing factors
to their success are their adventurous choice of material and their enthusiasm for the written word.
Two Dollar Radio and their fellow indies are proof positive that you can achieve [...] success without
pandering to trends. It may not always be a monetary success, but money's obviously not the main
motivation here. Eric and Eliza Obenauf publish books for love of the game. And as previously
mentioned, their passion for what they do is infectious."
by Edan Lepucki
"Whether it be larger independents like Algonquin and Graywolf, or small gems like Featherproof
and Two Dollar Radio, or university presses like Lookout Books... independent presses offer
diversity to readers... These presses are run and curated by well-read, talented people,
and they provide readers with the same services that a large press provides: namely, a vote
of confidence in a writer the public might have never heard of. Smaller presses, too, enjoy
a specificity of brand and identity that too often eludes a larger house."
The Columbus Dispatch
'Too Loud to Ignore'
Husband-and-wife team find following going against mainstream publishers
by Jeffrey Sheban
"Columbus is home to a small book publisher with grand ambitions... With an eclectic stable of
first-time novelists as well as more-established writers, Two Dollar Radio (slogan: “Books too
loud to ignore”) is gaining traction in publishing circles."
by David Gutowski
"A handful of publishers consistently amaze me, and one of those is Two Dollar Radio."
Three Guys One Book
'Why We Love What We Do - Eric Obenauf, Two Dollar Radio'
by Jonathan Evison
"We love their editorial voice (authors like Josh Mohr, Rudy Wurlitzer, and Grace Krilanovich), we love how they do
business, we love how they get behind their authors, and we love love love that they’re a family run shop."
'Can Mom and Pop Operations Rescue Publishing?'
by Jason Boog
'#61, List of Independent Books and Literature Sites'
by Jasmine Chan
"Unabashedly independent and idealistic... Two Dollar Radio claims to publish “Books Too Loud to Ignore.”
It seems Two Dollar Radio cannot be ignored either."
Art + Culture
'Curator's Corner: Two Dollar Radio'
by Benjamin Gottlieb
"The fiction publisher has a great many tremendous titles to its young catalogue."
by Michael Schaub
"[An] amazing indie press."
'Live From Book Expo America'
by Stephen Elliott
"McSweeney’s seems to be doing fine, along with Graywolf and Two Dollar Radio. People buy books from these
publishers written by authors they’ve never heard of. Just because. When was the last time someone bought
a Random House book because it was published by Random House?"
'The Slow, Moronic Death of Books (as We Know Them)'
by Paul Constant
"It's easy to imagine that this collapse is a happy ending for publishing: Picture a world of small, good
regional publishers like Two Dollar Radio, Seattle publisher Chin Music Press, and Akashic Books printing
beautiful books with high literary merit and authors making good, honest blue-collar salaries (instead of
grossly overinflated six-figure book deals). Frankly, that sounds like my dream industry."
Los Angeles Times
'BookExpo America reveals an industry in transition'
by David L. Ulin
"But for independent publishers - from the midsized Grove Atlantic to the fiercely iconoclastic Akashic and the
up-and-coming Two Dollar Radio - there was an air of possibility, the belief that the future was very much in play."
'Branding: The Future of Publishing?'
by Patrick Brown
"Two Dollar Radio has a very strong brand, publishing adventurous fiction across a spectrum of ideas rather than genres.
They also understand the value of design, creating attractive books that look nice together in a set. Not coincidentally,
they offer subscription packages on their website. They continue to be a model of how to start a small press and publish
great stuff. In short, they don’t compromise."
The Longest Chapter
'Dark, Gritty Books Too Loud to Ignore'
by Kassie Rose
"Eric and Eliza are young, smart, hard-working and visionary. And their publishing company, that originated in Brooklyn
four years ago, isn't some idealistic lark. No matter the persistent, annoying clamor that print is going away, it's not
going away and it won't go away because of independent publishers like the Obenaufs and Two Dollar Radio."
'The Unlikely Triumph of Two Dollar Radio'
by zach Baron
"A trove of extremely weird fiction... aesthetically consistent, editorially adventurous, and manageably tiny."
, Holiday 2008
by Timothy Hodler
"This tiny upstart has already produced an impressive array of subversive fiction."
'50 Under 40'
by Lynn Andriani
Times Literary Supplement
'Freelance' by Michael Greenberg
"[Their] list of authors is impressive. I marvel at [their] idealism."
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“If I meet a reader and they say, ‘I buy all your books through Amazon,’ I often say to them, ‘That’s great for Amazon,
that’s great for the shipper. It does nothing for me, and it doesn’t do much for the author.’”
-Gavin Grant, Publisher of the fantastic Small Beer Press
'Books After Amazon,' by Onnesha Roychoudhuri
If you care at all about supporting literary culture then you won't order our books (or any books for that
matter) through amazon.
Having gotten that out of the way with, there are a significant number of indie bookstores that have supported our books,
and deserve a lot of the credit for keeping us afloat. We'd prefer you buy our books from them. To find a bookstore
in your area,
has a valuable resource of listings.
You can also order
any of our titles directly through our website for shelf-price, or
annual subscription packages
for a tidy $50.
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