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Pride Story Bundles to Benefit Charity

A banner with a faded-out background of rainbow pride-flag-esque stripes. Text reads, "Read Queer Stories, Support Queer Causes with Duck Prints Press." It includes the Duck Prints Press logo, with the name of the business, rainbow duck prints on the left and bottom sides, and a white duck standing beside the name, looking at the viewer. Beneath that is the Press slogan, "we print diversity."

HAPPY PRIDE MONTH, EVERYONE! We are thrilled to announce our second-annual Pride Bundles for Charity with two all-new short story bundles – 30 stories total! – that we are selling at a discount to raise money for our chosen queer charity!

Last year, our debut Pride bundles raised almost $350 for queer charities. This year, we’re back with a new General Imprint Bundle and a new Explicit Imprint Bundle, each discounted 20% from their list prices (and each including multiple stories that aren’t for sale and are usually only available to our backers on Patreon) and with 20% of the net profit going to Rainbow Railroad.

How This Works

  • you buy one or both bundles between now and July 8th, 2024.
  • we tally up all the proceeds earned and do some math-e-magic to figure out how much we’re donating!
  • before the end of July, we donate the raised money to Rainbow Railroad, we post the proof we’ve done so.
  • you get fantastic stories!
  • we all get that happy, glowy feeling of knowing that money has been well-spent on fantastic causes!

About the Press

Duck Prints Press is a queer-owned indie press, founded to publish original works by fancreators. We’ve been in operation for over 3 years, and in that time we’ve worked with well over 150 creators to publish six anthologies and almost 100 other stories, from shorts to novels, and we’ve got more on the works (our next anthology, our first erotica collection, will be crowdfunding within the next month!). The vast majority of our creators and their creations are queer/LGTBQIA+ (maybe even all, but we don’t out anyone and we don’t ask demography because, frankly, it’s none of our business).

25 of our authors have chosen to include their short stories in one or both of these short story bundles, and all our short story authors nominated potential charities and voted to select Rainbow Railroad as the beneficiary for our 2024 Pride Bundles.

About Rainbow Railroad

In countries around the world, LGBTQI+ people face violence and oppression simply because of who they love or who they are. Rainbow Railroad helps them get to safety! Rainbow Railroad is a global not-for-profit organization that helps at-risk LGBTQI+ people get to safety worldwide. Based in the United States and Canada, they’re an organization that helps LGBTQI+ people facing persecution based on their sexual orientation, gender identity and sex characteristics. In a time when there are more displaced people than ever, LGBTQI+ people are uniquely vulnerable due to systemic, state-enabled homophobia and transphobia. These factors either displace them in their own country or prevent them from escaping harm. 

Note: This charity isnot affiliated with the Press, do not know we’re doing this fundraiser, have not endorsed this in anyway and are, as such, utterly uninvolved in this beyond being the beneficiaries of our efforts! Text is from the Rainbow Railroad website.

About the Bundles

We are offering two bundles, one with 18 short stories published under our General Imprint, the other containing 12 stories published under our Explicit Imprint. The shop listings include details about and excerpts from all the stories. Here’s the gist…

A graphic with a semi-opaque background of vertical rainbow stripes. Text on the graphic reads "Buy 18 General Imprint Stories, Support Rainbow Railroad! with Duck Prints Press." Beside the Press name are duck prints each a different rainbow color (on the left and bottom) and on the right is a white duck with orange beak and feet. This is the Duck Prints Press logo, and beneath it is the slogan "We Print Diversity."

Titles in the General Imprint Charity Bundle:

18 stories. 254 pages. 82,462 words of fiction!

Price: $22.50

Approximately 20% of the list price of this bundle will go to Rainbow Railroad.


Titles in the Explicit Imprint Charity Bundle:

12 stories. 198 pages. 69,550 words.

Price: $21.50

Approximately 20% of the list price of this bundle will go to Rainbow Railroad.

A graphic with a semi-opaque background of vertical rainbow stripes. Text on the graphic reads "Buy 12 Explicit Imprint Stories, Support Rainbow Railroad! with Duck Prints Press." Beside the Press name are duck prints each a different rainbow color (on the left and bottom) and on the right is a white duck with orange beak and feet. This is the Duck Prints Press logo, and beneath it is the slogan "We Print Diversity."

Come get some great stories, support a queer-owned business this Pride, and benefit two fantastic causes. Win-win-win situations don’t get much better than this!

These bundles will only be available for one month, so don’t miss out. Visit our webstore between now and July 8th and get yours!

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Created Works Round-Up: May 2024

A banner that reads "Created Works Round Up: May." In the upper left corner is the Duck Prints Press logo with a rainbow of duck prints around the left and bottom of it. On the right is the Dux mascot, a white duck with an orange beak and orange feet and a pleased expression on their face.

Duck Prints Press’s monthly “created works round-ups” are our opportunity to spotlight some of the amazing work that people working with us have done that ISN’T linked to their work with Duck Prints Press. We include fanworks, outside publications, and anything else that creators feel like sharing with y’all. Inclusion is voluntary and includes anything that they decided “hey, I want to put this on the created work’s round-up!”

Check out what they’ve shared with us this month…


Painting for The First Duty of All Magicians Is to Save Their Friends, Chapter 5: The Conversation by EliotQueliot

art || the magicians (tv) || platonic or familial, m/m || quentin coldwater/eliot waugh || general audiences || creator choses not to use warnings || complete

summary: The painting shows best friends Margo and Eliot in the kitchen at the Physical Kids Cottage at Brakebills University, discussing Eliot’s relationship with Quentin. A message from future-Eliot, passed on by Margo, included Quentin and Eliot’s wedding rings from another life. According to future-Eliot’s warning, the stakes are high: if Eliot doesn’t make things right with Quentin, Q will die.

other tags: Character Death Fix, Alternate Universe – Canon Divergence, Grief/Mourning, Fix-It

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Secrets of the Heart by unforth/Nina Waters

fiction || the untamed || f/m || jiang cheng/wen qing || general audiences || no major warnings apply || 1,970 || complete

summary: Wen Qing isn’t sure why Jiang Cheng’s heart is racing during a perfectly ordinary physical.

other tags: Modern medical setting, heart beat kink

AO3


To Get Home by unforth/Nina Waters

fiction || scum villain’s self-saving system || m/m, poly (one gender: male) || liu qingge/original liu qingge, background bingliushen || explicit || rape/non-con || 4,944 || complete

summary: Liu Qingge is stuck in a time loop where every day, he wakes up in Lingxi Cave to find past-him qi deviating. He’s tried everything he can think of to get home, from complete non-interference through murdering past-him, but still he hasn’t been able to return.

And then he realizes there’s one thing he hasn’t tried.

He hasn’t let past-him catch him.

other tags: time loop, selfcest, rough sex, fuck or die

AO3

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10 Books for Pansexual and Panromantic Visibility Day!

A graphic depicting ten book covers over a striped background in the colors of the pansexual pride flag (magenta, yellow, and blue). The graphic is entitled "10 Pan Reads for Pansexual and Panromantic Visibility Day." The ten books are: All Systems Red by Martha Wells; A Fisherman of the Inland Sea by Ursula K. Le Guin; Commit to the Kick by Tris Lawrence; Count Your Lucky Stars by Alexandria Bellefleur; Maneater by Emily Antoinette; There's Magic Between Us by Jillian Maria; Elfquest: Fire and Flight by the Pinis; Fledgling by Octavia E. Butler; Final Draft by Riley Redgate; and Before I Let Go by Marieke Nijkamp.

May 24th is Pansexual and Panromantic Visibility Day, so make sure to say hi to your pan friends before they’re invisible again! We’re celebrating with (shock) book recommendations! Explicit pan rep is hard to come by, and in cases where it’s implied, the difference between interpreting a characters as bi versus pan is often down to personal perceptions of the character and the sexuality/romanticisms in questions. With that in mind, we present 10 titles we loved with either explicit or implied pan rep! The contributors to this list are: Nina Waters, Tris Lawrence, boneturtle, E. C., and two anonymous contributors

All Systems Red (The Murderbot Diaries series) by Martha Wells

“As a heartless killing machine, I was a complete failure.”

In a corporate-dominated spacefaring future, planetary missions must be approved and supplied by the Company. Exploratory teams are accompanied by Company-supplied security androids, for their own safety.

But in a society where contracts are awarded to the lowest bidder, safety isn’t a primary concern.

On a distant planet, a team of scientists are conducting surface tests, shadowed by their Company-supplied ‘droid—a self-aware SecUnit that has hacked its own governor module, and refers to itself (though never out loud) as “Murderbot.” Scornful of humans, all it really wants is to be left alone long enough to figure out who it is.

But when a neighboring mission goes dark, it’s up to the scientists and their Murderbot to get to the truth.


A Fisherman of the Inland Sea by Ursula K. Le Guin

The award-winning stories in A Fisherman of the Inland Sea range from the everyday to the outer limits of experience, where the quantum uncertainties of space and time are resolved only in the depths of the human heart. Astonishing in their diversity and power, they exhibit both the artistry of a major writer at the height of her powers and the humanity of a mature artist confronting the world with her gift of wonder still intact.


Commit to the Kick by Tris Lawrence

For eighteen years, Alaric has lived under the cloying politics of family and his Clan community. His freshman year is supposed to be a chance to explore a world where Clan and his shapeshifting Talent isn’t central to his life. But when his inner bear bursts forth during his first football game, endangering those around him, Alaric realizes that it’s not so easy to ignore his past, or his own internalized anger.

In his quest for anger management, Alaric begins to train in taekwondo, and makes new friends in both sports. He finds that he is creating his own small community, where Clan, Mages, other Talents, and even humans come together and build their own found family.

When Alaric receives news that something has happened to his brother Orson, he must return and deal with his Clan and his place in their world. He discovers that old prejudices are still strong between Clan and Mage communities, but that both may be in danger from a creature long thought to be only a legend. Alaric must figure out how to move forward and prevent a war and protect both his home and newly built communities, his found family with him every step of the way. 


Count Your Lucky Stars by Alexandria Bellefleur

Margot Cooper doesn’t do relationships. She tried and it blew up in her face, so she’ll stick with casual hookups, thank you very much. But now her entire crew has found “the oneand she’s beginning tofeel like a fifth wheel. And then fate (the heartless bitch) intervenes. While touring a wedding venue with her engaged friends, Margot comes face-to-face with Olivia Grant—her childhood friend, her first love, her first… well, everything. It’s been ten years, but the moment they lock eyes, Margot’s cold, dead heart thumps in her chest.

Olivia must be hallucinating. In the decade since she last saw Margot, her life hasn’t gone exactly as planned. At almost thirty, she’s been married… and divorced. However, a wedding planner job in Seattle means a fresh start and a chance to follow her dreams. Never in a million years did she expect her important new client’s Best Woman would be the one that got away.

When a series of unfortunate events leaves Olivia without a place to stay, Margot offers up her spare room because she’s a Very Good Person. Obviously. It has nothing to do with the fact that Olivia is as beautiful as ever and the sparks between them still make Margot tingle. As they spend time in close quarters, Margot starts to question her no-strings stance. Olivia is everything she’s ever wanted, but Margot let her in once and it ended in disaster. Will history repeat itself or should she count her lucky stars that she gets a second chance with her first love? 


Maneater (Monsters of Moonvale series) by Emily Antoinette

If something ever seems too good to be true, it probably is. That’s how the “friendly” invitation to join a new coven turned into a surprise demon summoning. At least it wasn’t a virgin sacrifice. Then I really would have been screwed—and not in the way they plan for with the succubus they’ve bound. 

When I help free her from the bindings and offer her a ride back to work, things get even weirder. She tells me she wants to see me again. This captivating woman wants to see me—a nerdy witch who spends his free time playing D&D. 

There’s no way she means it. Because that’s definitely too good to be true. Still, there’s no way I can resist the opportunity to spend more time with a goddess like her. 


There’s Magic Between Us by Jillian Maria

A diehard city girl, 16-year-old Lydia Barnes is reluctant to spend a week in her grandma’s small town. But hidden beneath Fairbrooke’s exterior of shoddy diners and empty farms, there’s a forest that calls to her. In it, she meets Eden: blunt, focused, and fascinating. She claims to be hunting fae treasure, and while Lydia laughs it off at first, it quickly becomes obvious that Eden’s not joking-magic is real.

Lydia joins the treasure hunt, thrilled by all the things it offers her. Things like endless places in the forest to explore and a friendship with Eden that threatens to blossom into something more. But even as she throws herself into her new adventure, some questions linger. Why did her mom keep magic a secret? Why do most of the townspeople act like the forest is evil? It seems that, as much as Lydia would like to pretend otherwise, not everything in Fairbrooke is as bright and easy as a new crush…


Fire and Flight (ElfQuest series) by Wendy and Richard Pini

The forest-dwelling elves called the Wolfriders are burnt out of their ancestral home by vengeful humans. Betrayed by cowardly trolls, the elfin band, led by Cutter, Blood of Ten Chiefs, must cross the Burning Waste to find a haven they’ve never seen before. Can the Wolfriders survive? If they do, what surprises await them at Sorrow’s End?


Fledgling by Octavia E. Butler

This is the story of an apparently young, amnesiac girl whose alarmingly unhuman needs and abilities lead her to a startling conclusion: She is in fact a genetically modified, 53-year-old vampire. Forced to discover what she can about her stolen former life, she must at the same time learn who wanted-and still wants-to destroy her and those she cares for and how she can save herself.


Final Draft by Riley Redgate

Laila Piedra doesn’t drink, doesn’t smoke, and definitely doesn’t sneak into the 21-and-over clubs on the Lower East Side. The only sort of risk Laila enjoys is the peril she writes for the characters in her stories: epic sci-fi worlds full of quests, forbidden love, and robots. Her creative writing teacher has always told her she has a special talent. But three months before graduation, Laila’s number one fan is replaced by Nadiya Nazarenko, a Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist who sees nothing at all special about Laila’s writing.

A growing obsession with gaining Nazarenko’s approval–and fixing her first-ever failing grade–leads to a series of unexpected adventures. Soon Laila is discovering the psychedelic highs and perilous lows of nightlife, and the beauty of temporary flings and ambiguity. But with her sanity and happiness on the line, Laila must figure out if enduring the unendurable really is the only way to greatness.


Before I Let Go by Marieke Nijkamp

Best friends Corey and Kyra were inseparable in their tiny snow-covered town of Lost Creek, Alaska. But as Kyra starts to struggle with her bipolar disorder, Corey’s family moves away. Worried about what might happen in her absence, Corey makes Kyra promise that she’ll stay strong during the long, dark winter.

Then, just days before Corey is to visit, Kyra dies. Corey is devastated–and confused, because Kyra said she wouldn’t hurt herself. The entire Lost community speaks in hushed tones, saying Kyra’s death was meant to be. And they push Corey away like she’s a stranger.

The further Corey investigates–and the more questions she asks–the greater her suspicion grows. Lost is keeping secrets–chilling secrets. Can she piece together the truth about Kyra’s death and survive her visit?


You can also view this list on the shelf on our Goodreads, or visit Bookshop.org and check out this list in our affiliate shop! Note: due to the difficulty of differentiating a pan characters versus a bi character unless which they are is explicitly identified in canon, we have put bi and pan characters on joint lists – so these lists linked are bisexual and/or pansexual character lists.

What are your favorite books with pansexual and panromantic characters?

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Created Works Round-Up: April 2024

A banner that reads "Created Works Round Up: April." In the upper left corner is the Duck Prints Press logo with a rainbow of duck prints around the left and bottom of it. On the right is the Dux mascot, a white duck with an orange beak and orange feet and a pleased expression on their face.

Duck Prints Press’s monthly “created works round-ups” are our opportunity to spotlight some of the amazing work that people working with us have done that ISN’T linked to their work with Duck Prints Press. We include fanworks, outside publications, and anything else that creators feel like sharing with y’all. Inclusion is voluntary and includes anything that they decided “hey, I want to put this on the created work’s round-up!”

Check out what they’ve shared with us this month…

Secret Lives, Chapter Eight: Eliot by EliotQueliot

fiction || the magicians (tv) || m/m || quentin coldwater/eliot waugh || mature || creator choses not to use warnings || 3,547 || work in progress

summary: Eliot cares for Quentin while he recuperates from the hedge witch battle. To avoid the dean’s restrictions, they decide to collaborate on one of Eliot’s ghost rescue missions. (This chapter’s short and mostly fluffy!)

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Art for Mosaic Haiku, Chapter One by EliotQueliot

art || the magicians (tv) || m/m || quentin coldwater/eliot waugh || general audiences || creator choses not to use warnings || complete

summary: I’m painting watercolor sketches of key scenes in the lifetime that Eliot and Quentin spend together at the Mosaic in The Magicians Season 3, Episode 5, “A Life in the Day” (and relevant scenes that touch on this from other episodes). Part of my purpose here is to give us these important moments in full color, with good lighting and the ability to see their faces and body language clearly. I’m also just aiming to celebrate the vibrancy of their lives together. These are designed to accompany my haiku in my haiga project, “Mosaic Haiku.” The original photos with the haiku are now posted on Tumblr (links to each from the AO3 chapter), while I’m slowly adding my watercolor versions to all the chapters on AO3. The art for Chapter 1 of Mosaic Haiku is now complete, with three watercolors (and the original sketch for one of the watercolors).

AO3


Every After by MindfulWrath

fiction || kingdom hearts 2 || m/m || axel/roxas || mature || graphic depictions of violence, major character death, rape/non-con, underage || 139,484 || complete

summary: If it always starts the same way, how could the ending ever change?

other tags: Alternate Universe, Disney Multiverse, Angst and Tragedy, Dead Dove: Do Not Eat, Eye Trauma, Transphobia, Internalized Homophobia, Suicidal Thoughts

AO3


…& the Future by Rascal Hartley

fiction || damar series – robin mckinley, the hero and the crown – robin mckinley || poly (multiple genders) || aerin/luthe/tor || mature || no major warnings apply || 11,270 || complete

summary: She thinks often of Luthe as Tor and her father recover, and as she herself regains her strength; she thinks of him in his lonely castle, his blonde curls, his eyes under the glistening moon. He does feel like a dream, but a good one, as if she might close her eyes just so and re-enter it at will. As it is, she holds Tor’s hand at his bedside and waits.

(Alternate ending to _The Hero and the Crown_ where Arlbeth survives, Talat stays with Aerin, and everything is a bit more queer)

other tags: Canon divergent, getting together, homoerotic swordfighting, enemies to lovers speedrun, minor peril

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The Recondite by S. J. Ralston

fiction || original work || no ships || teen & up || graphic depictions of violence || 7,029 || complete

summary: Something wretched is stirring in the Third Ward of Houston. Fisher, self-proclaimed Columbo of Los Espookies, aims to find out what it is before it finishes waking up.

other tags: Urban Fantasy, Queerphobia, Racism, Body Horror

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Heat transfer by Smehur

art || baldur’s gate 3 || m/m || astarion/tav || mature || no major warnings apply || complete

summary: When a healthy, living man holds an ancient vampire

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On Books and Reading by Smehur

fiction || baldur’s gate 3 || m/m || astarion/tav || teen & up || no major warnings apply || 2,495 || ongoing series

summary: Panic roils underneath Tav’s outward calm. What to do? If he outright refuses to give Astarion the cursed book, the nascent bond between them will snap. He doesn’t want that. But what Astarion asks is irrational, and to agree with it would be irrational too. Worse still, it would set a dangerous precedent. He’ll know exactly how to manipulate Tav the next time some whim takes hold of him.

other tags: Slow Burn, Disabled Character, Male Tav

AO3


Once Upon a Future Time: Saverre’s Seven Ravens by Terra P. Waters

fiction || original work || platonic or familial || general audiences || no major warnings apply || 10k || complete

summary: When Saverre finds out she had seven older brothers who were kidnapped by the government and turned into cybernetic warriors called Ravens, she goes on a quest to save them and bring them home. A sci-fi retelling of the Grimm’s Fairy Tale, “The Seven Ravens.”

other tags: space stations, space ships, vent crawling, family drama, body modification, cybernetics, confidence games

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Creativity for the Love of It, Part 2: Fanworks by Max Jason Peterson

meta || original work || no ships || general audiences || no major warnings apply || 1,772 || complete

summary: An essay about some of the reasons fanworks are wonderful, from the point of view of a fanworks creator (in the universe of Lev Grossman’s series, The Magicians) who also makes original fiction/poetry/art. Includes kudos for Lev Grossman as a friend of fanworks.

LINK


Whimsical Life by May Barros

ttrpg || original work || no ships || general audiences || no major warnings apply || complete

summary: A slice-of-life rpg about magical beings doing odd jobs to a non-magical community and growing in power and knowledge.

They sell their services, study their craft, deal with magical shenanigans and interact with the community.

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There’s some really awesome stuff this month, so why not take a minute and check some of it out?

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Welcome to May Trope Mayhem 2024!

A graphic with a pale blue background. The header reads "May Trope Mayhem: A Multi-Fandom and Original Work Creation Challenge 2024 List." Below this is a numbered list of 31 items. The Duck Prints Press logo, surrounded by rainbow duck prints on two sides, with the white dux mascot on the right and the words "we print diversity" below that, is in the lower right corner of the image. The full list reads: 1. Secret Relationship 2. Mistaken Identity 3. Accidental Ownership 4. Space Western Setting 5. Marriage Before Love 6. Time Loop 7. Wound Tending 8. "This is our get-along shirt." 9. Reincarnation 10. Mutual Pining 11. Forced Proximity 12. Sentinel/Guide 13. Vampires 14. Outsider Point of View 15. Monster F*ing (censored in the image) 16. Foodservice Setting 17. Meet Cute 18. "Keep your dog on a leash." 19. Mecha 20. The Soulmate Goose of Enforcement 21. Steampunk 22. Love Requited Too Late 23. Bottom Storage 24. Werewolf/Shifter Character 25. Fake Relationship 26. Reciprocal Idiots 27. There Was Only One Bed 28. OMG They Were Roommates 29. Soul-Bonding 30. Homoerotic Swordfighting 31. Free day!

May Trope Mayhem is a multi-fandom/original creation event open to writers, artists, and creators of all kinds! We’ve put together a list of 30 of our favorite tropes (plus one free day!), one per day through the month of May, and we encourage creators to join us for this month of fun tropey mayhem.

Our goal is to promote motivation and help with habit building, so we’re encouraging authors to keep their ficlets under 1,000 words, artists to stick to making just a sketch, gif makers to only do a single image, etc., as applicable to whatever you’re making.

This event is primarily held on Tumblr, but you’re welcome to participate anywhere Duck Prints Press has an account (you can see all our current platforms here) and we’ll keep our eyes on our tag everywhere!

How can you participate? It’s easy! There’s just a few simple rules:

  • write a ficlet or a poem, create art, make a gif, or create any other content that you want, aligned with the prompt for the day!
  • post your correctly tagged fills to Tumblr, and we’ll reblog them! We’ll reskeet works on Bluesky, retoot those on Mastodon, you get the idea. Note: we do not use Twitter.
  • you must tag warnings such as gore, MCD, sexual content, etc., so that people can make informed decisions!
  • please also tag fandom and ship, so people can find what interests them!
  • we ask that you put the tags at the top of your post, so they’re easy to find.
  • if you write more than 1k words and post the whole text on Tumblr or wherever, please use a read more if the platform allows.
  • if you create something with NSFW content or potentially triggering material, please put the entire work under a read more.

Ping us (duckprintspress) or tag your creations “#may trope mayhem” and so we can find them! We’ll reblog all fills that follow the above rules and are posted between May 1st and June 8th, 2024.

If you post to AO3, you can also add them to our collection there!

You don’t have to sign up for May Trope Mayhem, just post your fills. You don’t have to be a member of the Press nor do you have to be following us. You don’t have to be part of a specific fandom. We’re open to all ships, genres, formats, etc.! You don’t have to post fills on the corresponding day, though we ask that if you’re creating for a day that hasn’t happened yet, please wait for that day to post.

Participating in May Trope Mayhem? Want to chat fandom, books, creation, and more? Join our Book Lover’s Discord Server!

This is a low-pressure event, held in good fun, and we look forward to seeing what you create!

MAY TROPE MAYHEM Prompt List, with some links and definitions for ones we were worried might be confusing or challenging for folks!

  1. Secret Relationship
  2. Mistaken Identity
  3. Accidental Ownership (Character A accidentally ends up the owner of Character B)
  4. Space Western Setting
  5. Marriage Before Love
  6. Time Loop
  7. Wound Tending
  8. “This is our get-along shirt.”
  9. Reincarnation
  10. Mutual Pining
  11. Forced Proximity
  12. Sentinel/Guide
  13. Vampires
  14. Outsider Point of View
  15. Monster F*ing (censored in the image)
  16. Foodservice Setting
  17. Meet Cute
  18. “Keep your dog on a leash.”
  19. Mecha
  20. The Soulmate Goose of Enforcement
  21. Steampunk
  22. Love Requited Too Late
  23. Bottom Storage (or however you feel like interpreting it!)
  24. Werewolf/Shifter Character
  25. Fake Relationship
  26. Reciprocal Idiots (like idiots to lovers, or however else you feel like interpreting it!)
  27. There Was Only One Bed
  28. OMG They Were Roommates
  29. Soul-Bonding
  30. Homoerotic Swordfighting
  31. Free day!
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Round Table: Poetry Month

A graphic over a pale blue background. Text reads: National Poetry Month DPP Round Table. There is clipart of a fancy green-covered book, the cover lifted, with a quill pen and a page of notes below it.

April is National Poetry Month. Duck Prints Press has to date only published prose fiction, and while some of us do write poetry on the side, it’s generally not our focus. Thus, we thought it’d be fun and interesting to have a discussion about poetry, how poetry has impacted us, and our favorite poems. The people who joined in on the round table chat are: Nina Waters, Tris Lawrence, Shadaras, Zel Howland, boneturtle, E C, Shea Sullivan,  theirprofoundbond, and an anonymous contributor.

1. What are your favorite types of poems?

Nina Waters: I tend to like either extremely free form or extremely structured poetry, with nothing in between. I always loved silly poetry (Shel Silverstein…) especially.

Anonymous: Same. I generally like either narrative poems or poems that are about a specific moment. I’m especially fond of reading haiku, though I don’t know how good I am at writing them.

Tris Lawrence: I tend to have favorite writers more than favorite styles. I love the cadence of Shakespeare. I love the imagery of Emily Dickinson (I cannot even count how many times I read the book of poetry of hers that I received for Christmas as a young child). I adored Robert Frost as a child. For modern poetry, Amanda Gorman‘s book was an incredibly wonderful kick in the gut.

Zel Howland: I’ve always had a mixed relationship with poetry – I struggle with understanding figurative language, so often the meaning of poetry escapes me, but I love the technical forms of poetry. This means that I end up being better at writing poetry than reading it. That said, I love silly poems and nonsense poems because they are more about the form than the content! Shel Silverstein and Lewis Carroll come to mind first.

E. C: I love seeing/hearing poetry read aloud. Slam poetry or Shakespearean monologue, the way the act of speaking them gives additional meaning to the words is just *chef’s kiss*. I also love poets (like Silverstein, as Zel mentioned) who use the form to play with the words. Prose can do this, too, but reading or hearing good poetry… it’s like I can feel the words rewiring my brain in real-time.

Shadaras: +1, poetry when performed is absolutely incredible. And it doesn’t need to be slam or a monologue; most poetry when read aloud is fantastic! (Shape poems might lose something, but… that’s aiming for a different style)

Shea Sullivan: I love poetry that viscerally evokes feeling with word choice and has rhythm. I love Rainer Maria Rilke first and last, but also Seamus Heaney and Mary Oliver.   I struggle with so many popular poets because the work doesn’t scan for me and I can’t make sense of the rhythm. But the poems that hit take me out at the knees.

Tris Lawrence: Coming back to this discussion this morning, I remembered I should add song lyrics to this… for me, really excellent songs are the best poetry, and some writers (like [Bob] Dylan) I remember more for the poetry of the song than the performance of it. Much like how poetry when performed comes alive, music is that taken to even further down the line. As for poetry being performed, that’s why Shakespeare is so awesome when staged. Sometimes it’s easier to hear the lyricism than to read it. I also often recommend when reading a book of poetry, take it slow, and read one poem aloud  per day. This is how I savored Amanda Gorman’s book and how I really got the most out of every poem in that book.

theirprofoundbond: I want to echo what Shade and captainhaterade were talking about with regards to poetry and sound. I took a poetry class in college and when the professor had us read “Player Piano” by John Updike aloud it awakened something in my brain. I have never forgotten that experience and the absolute delight I felt, reading that poem.

When I went to university and took another poetry class, my instructor stressed that we should try reading poetry aloud – to slow you down a bit, to experience the sounds, to get just a little more out of it. He recommended reading it a little more like prose, not pausing at the end of a line if there’s no end-line punctuation. I always do these things now and it’s made poetry feel more accessible to me, and helped me enjoy it more.

Alfred Tennyson also does some great things with sound—no standout favorites just yet because I’m still exploring, but I like “Break, Break, Break”

Joyful Noise: Poems for Two Voices by Paul Fleischman is really wonderful book of children’s poems about insects, meant to be read aloud by two or more people.

I also love poems that have some specific structure. My favorite is the haiku, but I also really enjoy villanelles, sestinas, and pantoums. Not only do they have specific rhyme schemes but some lines must be repeated in specific places; I admire the skill they take to craft. “Villanelle for the Middle of the Night” by Jacqueline Osherow is a lovely example.

And narrative poems, because it’s so cool to get a story in a small, unique format. “Letter to the Person Who Carved His Initials into the Oldest Living Longleaf Pine in North America” by Matthew Olzmann is one that I found recently that really stands out to me

Nina Waters: Maybe the “best listened to” is why I struggle with it. Understanding and processing spoken stories like that is one of my weaker tricks.

theirprofoundbond: That may be it! It’s not for everyone, but I know it helped me. And I started reading academic stuff aloud to help me focus, and then I started reading my own writing aloud which has helped me improve it in many ways (dialogue, flow, style), and I read my editing assignments aloud because it helps me pick up on little things I might not, if I read silently. But yeah, everyone’s brains work differently so it might not be the trick for everyone – just something to try, perhaps, if it hasn’t been tried before or recently

2. What inspired/convinced you to start reading poetry and did you have any preconceived notions and biases about it before?

Shadaras: as far as how I started reading poetry… well, the thing is that a lot of children’s books are poetry, right? They’re written in rhyme because it’s a good way to help kids learn! So in that way, simply by being someone who loved reading (from a family who loved reading), I was always surrounded by poetry as a kid by the nature of early reader books. I know that I was also introduced to poets who are thought of as poets as I grew up, and generally liked poetry even if I didn’t seek it out much. I wrote poetry as a kid just as much as I wrote prose!

Nina Waters: I’ll own I had some preconceived notions about poetry and reading poetry hasn’t really dispelled them? I’ve always found most “high literary” poetry quite inaccessible. Things like epic poetry (such as Homer) I love and can read no problem, and things like silly poetry (Silverstein, Dr. Seuss) I also love and can read no problem, but the kind of poetry that’s ~deep~ and tends to win accolades, I often feel like my eyes glaze over when I try to read it. I just really struggle with it.

Shadaras: I feel like that’s almost more a problem with the idea of “high literary” mode in general? Because I feel like that about a lot of different kinds of media. It’s like people think that if they struggle to understand what a piece of media is about, that means it’s ~higher art~ or something. (There’s a certain style of movie I call “award bait” and I think it is adjacent to what you’re thinking of with poetry here.) And yes, deep and thematically complex art is fantastic and deserves praise, but there’s also something to be said for praiseworthy works being enjoyable/accessible to the majority of people who encounter it? and that doesn’t seem to factor in to those “high literary” assessments.

Nina Waters: That’s definitely true, and something I used to talk about when I was still doing academic reading and writing. This idea that these ~great minds~ would write these papers, and they weren’t good, they were jargon-laden bullshit. Their sheer inaccessibility would always convince a subset of people that it must be genius, because the alternative would be to admit they didn’t personally understand it and no one wanted to confess that.

With poetry it’s harder but there’s definitely that line between “this is so eloquent and deep” vs. “this literally means NOTHING.” (And with poetry, there’s the added “sometimes the line that is eloquent and deep to one person is exactly the same line that means nothing to someone else and because of the nature of poetry that’s kinda the point and both interpretations are ‘correct'”)

theirprofoundbond: I have been, and still am, a bit intimidated by poetry. A lot of it can be really inaccessible, whether it’s classical or modern. I’m not sure I’ll ever truly grasp the meter stuff, lol. But as with any other written work, poetry can be for anyone. Even if I can’t understand a poem on all levels, it’s okay because it’s still worth exploring and I might find something that resonates with me, or teaches me something, or inspires my own (prose) writing.

3. What can a prose writer learn from reading poetry?

Tris Lawrence: It’s really all about the way the words taste, and how that evokes imagery and sensation and emotion for me. Which is also what I take from it as a prose writer – I’ve always been about the way words feel in my mouth when I write.

Shadaras: I might mostly write prose now, but the poetic instinct is still in my head; it’s very visible (audible?) in descriptive passages I write, because I think about rhythm and shape and sound all the time even in my prose writing.

theirprofoundbond: Reading poetry has inspired me to think more carefully about choice of word, pay attention to how certain emotions are evoked or impacts achieved, and to play with sounds.

Shadaras: I think that reading poetry is a fantastic way to think about metaphor/simile and descriptive language more generally. It also emphasises the rhythm/shape/sound of words and asks for a focus on specificity and thoughtful word-choice to maximize the impact of any given piece. Those elements are just as useful to prose writers as poets! Poets might be able to sustain that in-depth focus across a whole piece (since they usually work in shorter forms), but even if a prose writer only uses that specific attention at points of intense emotion where they really want to ensure there’s an impact, it’s still fantastic.

Anonymous: So I guess what I’m saying is that is that reading poetry will make you a better short story writer.

Shadaras: Yeah, the dividers between poems, prose poems, and prose is… sometimes about framing/intent?

Anonymous: Often I find short stories are structured like poetry, in that the narrative is kind of intentionally picked apart and rearranged to evoke emotion rather than straightforward understanding of the narrative.

Shadaras: And then there’s epic poetry, which is a long-form narrative as well as being poetry!

Anonymous: It’s harder to do that kind of thing with long-form fiction but it does happen occasionally.

Nina Waters: I think reading poetry can really help a prose writer with lyricism and flow.

Zel Howland: Seconded what everyone has said about reading poetry helping with lyricism and rhythm. I think having a good understanding of poetry technique can really develop how your prose manipulates (for lack of a better word) the reader beyond what is in the content – building tension in horror, for example. Great for genre work in general!

Shea Sullivan: From a writing standpoint, poetry helps me improve metaphor and simile by encouraging me to look beyond common comparisons and really dig into the question of what I want to evoke. I agree with everyone else that it helps with rhythm as well.

Anonymous: One thing I will note is that a short story can be very close to poetry and vice versa. Some of my favourite poems are in fact short stories that blur the line between stylized prose and outright poetry. Neil Gaiman has a few short stories that are especially good in this way, for example.

4. Our favorite poets

Many of our favorite poets were already discussed and linked in the above discussion, but here’s a few more…

Nina Waters: I’ve especially enjoyed Silverstein, Shakespeare, Walt Whitman, and T. S. Eliot. I went on a big Eliot kick when I was young cause I saw the musical Cats, and while I didn’t care much for the musical it made me curious about the poems that the musical was based on. I loved Silverstein so much that I memorized a couple of his poems for school. I also memorized a [J. R. R.] Tolkien poem and performed it at a school talent show when I was in middle school, so those plus reading Eliot because of Cats (which I was probably in early HS for?) is how I got started reading poetry for fun instead of just cause I had to.

Shadaras: Some other poets I’ve appreciated whose names haven’t come up yet: Mary Oliver, Ursula Le Guin, Pablo Neruda, Langston Hughes, Allen Ginsberg, Edgar Allen Poe, Sylvia Plath, Robert Graves, W. B. Yeats, Rainer Maria Rilke, William Carlos Williams (I once wrote a short essay about “The Red Wheelbarrow” for a poetry class wherein I attempted to argue it could be about aliens/ritual sacrifice, because it was funny and I thought the professor would enjoy it, and I was correct about that).

Nina Waters: Langston Huges is i.n.c.r.e.d.i.b.l.e. W.E.B. Du Bois too. (Not his focus but there are a few)

boneturtle: Seconding Rilke. I will also add Annie Dillard.

How about you, dear blog post reader? How would you answer these four questions?

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Coming Soon: May Trope Mayhem 2024!

A graphic with a pale blue background. The header reads "May Trope Mayhem: A Multi-Fandom and Original Work Creation Challenge 2024 List." Below this is a blurred out area with a swirl of thin black lines, with the word "SOON!" written in large bold letters. The Duck Prints Press logo, surrounded by rainbow duck prints on two sides, with the white dux mascot on the right and the words "we print diversity" below that, is in the lower right corner of the image.

It’s almost time for May Trope Mayhem!

What is May Trope Mayhem? It’s Duck Prints Press’s annual multi-fandom/original work creation event! Our creators have shared their favorite tropes, and we’ve picked 30 (+1 free day!), one per day of May to make an awesome, fun, diverse list of prompts to inspire your creativity. Come May 1st, we invite everyone to create a ficlet, artwork, gif set, photo montage, or whatever else they feel like, inspired by the trope of the day. We’re open to any fandom or no fandom at all, original characters and old faves, any ship (yes even that one) or no ship or reader inserts or, or, or… basically, if you can imagine it, we can accommodate it!

This year marks our fourth-annual May Trope Mayhem. Curious about the event? You can learn some by checking out our previous three years!

The rules for 2024 will be about the same as in the past, so the only big change will be in the tropes – some are repeats, some are not. And of course day 31 is still a free day – we’d love to know YOUR favorite trope, especially if it it doesn’t end up our list for this year!

The 2024 list goes public on May 1st. Mark your calendars, tell yours friends, and get ready to create with us! And follow us on social media to make sure you don’t miss a thing!

Backers on Patreon can see the list early! It’s up now – become a backer and check it out.

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10 April Releases from Duck Prints Press!

After a couple slow months, we’ve come back raring with ten new releases in April so far (and more to come!). Join us now and learn all about ‘um.

Website Releases

A book cover. The background is a mottled tan parchment tone. Blue triangles in each corner bear a simple motif resembling a very stylized peacock. An ornate decorative graphic with elegant swirls is centered at the top. At the bottom is the Duck Prints Press logo. The title of the book is "Foundation" and the author is Johnathan Stern. Text below the title reads: Science Fiction * F/F * Academia Setting * Meet Cute

Title: Foundations
Author: Johnathan Stern

F/F, Science Fiction, Meet Cute on Mars

Addison is browsing the stacks of the Valles Marineris Coprates Chasma University Memorial Library when she’s shocked to find someone looking for the same obscure book about the history of space travel that is.

Buy it now!

Title: Worlds Apart (but Still Close)
Author: Sanne Burg

F/M and M/M to F/M/M, Urban Paranormal, Confessions of Mutual Attraction, When in Doubt Fuck it Out

Flo is consistently frustrated with how her boyfriend Arthur’s bodyguard Kacen is always watching her suspiciously. But when she discovers Arthur and Kacen in bed together, it casts a whole new light on the relationships between the three of them, and Flo finds herself considering possibilities that had never dawned on her before.

Buy it now!

A book cover. The background is a mottled tan parchment tone. Red triangles in each corner bear a simple motif resembling a very stylized peacock. An ornate decorative graphic with elegant swirls is centered at the top. At the bottom is the Duxxx Prints Press logo. The title of the book is "Worlds Apart" and the author is Sanne Burg. Text below the title reads: “Modern with Magic * F/M/M * Infidelity to Poly * The Only Solution to a Love Triangle Is..."

Patreon Releases: General Imprint

A book cover. The background is a mottled tan parchment tone. Blue triangles in each corner bear a simple motif resembling a very stylized peacock. An ornate decorative graphic with elegant swirls is centered at the top. At the bottom is the Duck Prints Press logo. The title of the book is “Glass Slipper: A Dance” and the author is Cedar McCafferty-Svec. Text below the title reads: Fantasy * F/NB * Cinderella Retelling * Getting Together.

Title: Glass Slipper: A Dance
Author: Cedar McCafferty-Svec

F/NB, Fantasy, Dating Royalty is Hard Even if Your Stepmother Isn’t Evil, Attraction at First Sight, Getting to Know One Another

Going to the ball was Marienne’s dream, but it still never occurred to her that she’d catch the eye of the Royal Heir Apparent. Their dance is a dream come true, and their walk around the gardens together helps demonstrate they could have a future together even putting perfect first-dances aside, but that doesn’t mean things will be easy.

Become a backer at the $5/month level (or higher!) to read this story!

Title: Fool’s Gold
Author: Eliot Lovell

M/M (Pre-Relationship), Fantasy, Dragon Hordes and Lifelong Dreams, Hurt/Comfort

When Tomas sets off to defeat a dragon, he does so despite the aches and pains of growing older and a bum hip. Little does he expect that his attempt to be a valiant hero will be derailed prematurely when he’s set upon by wolves. After they leave him unconscious in the woods, the last thing he expects is to be rescued and nursed to help. But he has one burning question: who found him, and why?

Become a backer at the $7/month (or higher!) level to read this story!

A book cover. The background is a mottled tan parchment tone. Blue triangles in each corner bear a simple motif resembling a very stylized peacock. An ornate decorative graphic with elegant swirls is centered at the top. At the bottom is the Duck Prints Press logo. The title of the book is "Fool's Gold" and the author is Eliot Lovell. Text below the title reads: “Fantasy * M/M Pre-Relationship * Dragon x Human * Nursing a Stranger to Health."
A book cover. The background is a mottled tan parchment tone. Blue triangles in each corner bear a simple motif resembling a very stylized peacock. An ornate decorative graphic with elegant swirls is centered at the top. At the bottom is the Duck Prints Press logo. The title of the book is “Into the Wyvern's Lair” and the author is Mikki Madison. Text below the title reads: “Fantasy * Action and Adventure * F/F Pre-Relationship."

Title: Into the Wyvern’s Lair
Author: Mikki Madison

F/F (Pre-Relationship), Fantasy, the Inherent Eroticism of Being Competing Mercenaries After the Same Mark (and the Same Pay Day)

Usually, Kella wouldn’t take a job from a tiny podunk town in exchange for the risks of facing wyvern, but they’re offering 25 gold pieces, and that’s too much to resist. She doesn’t expect the job to be that hard – it’s not her first time facing a wyvern – but she also doesn’t expect competition, in the form of a stubborn mage who has been hired by the same town at the same rate. But what she really doesn’t expect is the wyvern…

Become a backer at any level to read this story!

Title: Washer Wars: A Laundromat Feud
Author: Samantha M. Piper

F/F, Contemporary Romance, Meet-Awkward, Sometimes the Only Difference Between Fighting and Flirting is Point of View

Every Saturday morning, before the crack of dawn, Dee goes to the laundromat to do her laundry alone and in the quiet, with her pick of the available machines.

Until the morning she’s not alone anymore.

Truly, she doesn’t know what’s worse: the loss of her solitude, or that this intruder has taken the biggest washer.

Become a backer at any level to read this story!

A book cover. The background is a mottled tan parchment tone. Blue triangles in each corner bear a simple motif resembling a very stylized peacock. An ornate decorative graphic with elegant swirls is centered at the top. At the bottom is the Duck Prints Press logo. The title of the book is “Washer Wars: A Laundromat Feud” and the author is Samantha M. Piper. Text below the title reads: Modern Romance * F/F * Misunderstandings * Getting Together
A book cover. The background is a mottled tan parchment tone. Blue triangles in each corner bear a simple motif resembling a very stylized peacock. An ornate decorative graphic with elegant swirls is centered at the top. At the bottom is the Duck Prints Press logo. The title of the book is “Coffee For My Valentine?” and the author is Cedar McCafferty-Svec. Text below the title reads: Modern with Magic * F/F * Meet Cute

Title: Coffee For My Valentine?
Author: Cedar McCafferty-Svec

F/F, Contemporary Romance with a Splash of Magic, Bookshop-slash-Coffee-Shop Meet-Cute, Heat Resistance for the Win

Valentine’s day is invariably a disaster for Nissa. And when she starts this Valentine’s work day by spilling coffee all over a new customer?

Maybe she should have just stayed in bed this morning.

Become a backer at the $7/month level (or higher!) to read this story!

Patreon Releases: Explicit Imprint

Title: Georgia Rain
Author: R. L. Houck
This is a sequel to the Patreon-exclusive story “Pretty 7 Days a Week”

F/NB, Contemporary Suspense, Reunion after a Long Separation, They Work Hard for the Money, You’ll Never Guess How This Sex Romp Gets Interrupted…

Four years after the events of Pretty 7 Days a Week, Tomas, who has changed their name to Aster, has built themself a new, better life no longer working on the streets.

The last thing they expect is for Lydia to come sweeping back into their life. It’s also the last thing they want…or so they keep trying to tell themself…

Become a backer at the $7/month level (or higher!) to read this story!

A book cover. The background is a mottled tan parchment tone. Red triangles in each corner bear a simple motif resembling a very stylized peacock. An ornate decorative graphic with elegant swirls is centered at the top. At the bottom is the Duxxx Prints Press logo. The title of the book is “Pretty 7 Days a Week” and the author is R. L. Houck. Text below the title reads: “Modern * F/F/F/M/NB Orgy * Non-Binary Character Point of View * Sex Work * Power Dynamics.”
A book cover. The background is a mottled tan parchment tone. Red triangles in each corner bear a simple motif resembling a very stylized peacock. An ornate decorative graphic with elegant swirls is centered at the top. At the bottom is the Duxxx Prints Press logo. The title of the book is “Old Kings and New” and the author is Lyonel Loy. Text below the title reads: Fantasy with Alpha/Beta/Omega Dynamics * M/M Omega/Omega * Conquered x Conqueror * Bodice Ripper Vibes.

Title: Old Kings and New
Author: Lyonel Loy

M/M, Fantasy, Omega/Omega, Middle-Aged Characters, Bonding Over Shared Favorite (Rape Fantasy) Books

No one in their right mind would name Isemund king, but he’s the only heir left, and so the council names him and then flees before the conqueror Caith can seize the castle.

Isemund is prepared to die at the hands of the invader.

Caith has other plans in mind.

Become a backer at the $25/month level to read this story!

Title: Escape
Author: Sanne Burg

F/M + F/M Established Relationship with Partner Swapping, Contemporary Romance, Middle-Aged Characters, Friends with Benefits to Lovers

Anxiety means that it doesn’t take much to push Liam into needing some quiet time to himself, and he’s so appreciative of his wife Alice taking the initiative to get him that quiet time.

He’s slightly less appreciative when their friends-with-benefits partner-swap married friends Dan and Lola show up, especially considering that it was finding RPF fanart of him and Dan having sex that triggered Liam’s anxiety in the first place…

Become a backer at the $7/month level (or higher!) to read this story!

A book cover. The background is a mottled tan parchment tone. Red triangles in each corner bear a simple motif resembling a very stylized peacock. An ornate decorative graphic with elegant swirls is centered at the top. At the bottom is the Duxxx Prints Press logo. The title of the book is “Escape” and the author is Sanne Burg. Text below the title reads: Modern * F/F and M/M * Polyamory * Friends to Lovers.

Duck Prints Press publishes 6 short stories every month to our Patreon – love short stories? Better become a backer now!

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Happy National Haiku Day! Enjoy These 15 Poems

Today, April 17 2024, is National Haiku Day! We celebrated by writing some poems. 😀 Not all adhere to the syllable count correctly but hey, it’s the spirit that counts…we had fun writing them, and we hope you have fun reading them!

Graphic 1 of 15 for National Haiku Day. This, and all subsequent graphics, bears the label "Haiku Day" and has a blue artsy circle over a white background. Within the circle is the text of a haiku and the name of the author, and the circle is accented with clipart that aligns with the topic of the poem. On this graphic, the poem reads: "A quiet minute to gather my thoughts, and then I get back to work." Author: Nina Waters. The clipart is of a melty-looking clock.
Graphic 2 of 15 for National Haiku Day. On this graphic, the poem reads: "A huge between friends - close and secure, safe and warm - nothing can beat it." Author: Nina Waters. The clipart is of a of two disembodied arms, one light skinned, one dark skinned, embracing.
Graphic 3 of 15 for National Haiku Day. On this graphic, the poem reads: "Take a character. Take another character. Then, hehehehe." Author: Xianyu Zhou. The clipart is of an emoji making the suggestive "hey..." smirk expression.
Graphic 4 of 15 for National Haiku Day. On this graphic, the poem reads: "Sleep now, little one. Nothing hides beneath the bed. It comes out at night." Author: Rhosyn Goodfellow. The clipart is of a scary face with large eyes, a triangle nose, and jack-o-lantern squiggly mouth.
Graphic 5 of 15 for National Haiku Day. On this graphic, the poem reads: "UST, angst, desire. The heart longs, desperately. Who can hear its cry?" Author: Kelas. The clipart is of a pink heart with an eye in the middle of it, the eye shedding a single large tear.
Graphic 6 of 15 for National Haiku Day. On this graphic, the poem reads: "Colors in the sky. When the sun winds kiss the earth, a rainbow at night." Author: Alessa Riel. The clipart is of an aurora borealis in all colors of the rainbow.
Graphic 7 of 15 for National Haiku Day. On this graphic, the poem reads: "Strangers to lovers. There was only one bed. Must have been fate." Author: Alessa Riel. The clipart is of a bed with pink and gray pillows, one shaped like a heart.
Graphic 8 of 15 for National Haiku Day. On this graphic, the poem reads: "Bookshop meet cute and they were roommates. Love at first sight." Author: Alessa Riel. The clipart is of a cupid bow with a red heart arrow shedding additional hearts.
Graphic 9 of 15 for National Haiku Day. On this graphic, the poem reads: "stupid fucking taxes. US, why are you so dumb? just the worst system." Author: E. C. The clipart is of a a paper labeled TAX with stylized money atop them.
Graphic 10 of 15 for National Haiku Day. On this graphic, the poem reads: "wealth-hoarding, greedy, crime via complexity. time to eat the rich." Author: E. C.. The clipart is of a guillotine.
Graphic 11 of 15 for National Haiku Day. On this graphic, the poem reads: "Sometimes, when it rains a bloated pigeon's body falls from the drain pipe." Author: boneturtle. The clipart is of a a bird, but it's in jagged black lines and heavily stylized.
Graphic 12 of 15 for National Haiku Day. On this graphic, the poem reads: "Golden pockets there while mine are filled with ashes. Life just isn't fair." Author: Cedar. The clipart is of a pair of hands reaching out to open a brown wallet to show the money compartment bare save for a single coin and a cobweb.
Graphic 13 of 15 for National Haiku Day. On this graphic, the poem reads: "Trickle down a lie. A puddle at your bootstraps. Try to lift them up." Author: Cedar. The clipart is of a spurred boots standing in a puddle.
Graphic 14 of 15 for National Haiku Day. On this graphic, the poem reads: "Fear consumes me, love, but flees when you grab onto my soft, trembling hand." Author: Terra P. Waters. The clipart is of a pair of hands, one brown, one peach, reaching toward each other.
Graphic 15 of 15 for National Haiku Day. On this graphic, the poem reads: "A tall tree offers one tiny cluster of blooms, patiently tended." Author: Shea Sullivan. The clipart is of a tree with three colored flowers blooming on it.

Why not take a moment and join us by writing a haiku of your own in the comments? We’d love to read yours!

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Become a Duck Prints Press Patron and Help Us Pick Our Next Anthology Theme!

The Duck Prints Press Patreon includes a lot of awesome perks for people depending on their backer level, and one of the coolest? Every single backer, from the lowest $3/month level to the highest $25/month level, gets a say in deciding themes for our anthologies!

Starting yesterday, and for the next week (ending April 19 2024), we’re running a poll to pick the theme for our next General Imprint anthology!

What are the choices?

The common element is cozy. We love our debut anthology Add Magic to Taste, and we wanted something with a similar feel-good vibe for this collection. With that in mind, the DPP staff discussed a lot of options, and we narrowed it down to five – and picking between those five is where the backers come in!

  • cozy cottagecore (cabins and farms count as “cottages” – think Stardew Valley and Slime Rancher vibes)
  • cozy critters (any setting, cozy stories that include non-human characters)
  • cozy libraries/museums/colleges (take the central idea of “dark academia” as a genre…and turn it cozy. “Light academia” if you will)
  • cozy vacations/travels/trips (let’s take a journey together, and it’s soft and happy, and includes a lot of tropes like There Was Only One Bed)
  • cozy sword-and-sorcery/action adventure in a fantasy setting (self-explanatory. 😀 )

Which will win?

A screen capture of five options in a poll, with circles for voting - indicating that each voter must pick one. The five listed options are the same as already listed earlier in this blog post.

Time will tell!

Want to vote? You can! Become a Duck Prints Press Patreon supporter TODAY!

Interested in applying to contribute to this project, once we’ve settled on a theme? We anticipate opening recruitment for this anthology in July, 2024. You can make sure you hear about it when we do by signing up for our mailing list!