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Our Favorite Reads of 2023

A graphic showing 9 book covers over a rainbow gradient background, with the text "Our Fave Reads of 2023." The book covers are: Shubeik Lubeik by Deena Mohamed; Consort of Fire by Kit Rocha; The Spear Cuts Through the Water by Simon Jimenez; Light From Uncommon Stars by Ryka Aoki; Mo Du by Priest; Hijab Butch Blues by Almya H; Death by Silver by Melissa Scott and Amy Griswold; The Wolf of Oren-Yaro by K. S. Villoso; and Gideon the Ninth by Tasmyn Muir. Graphic 1/2 for this post.
A graphic showing 12 book covers over a rainbow gradient background. The books are: November by Thomas Olde Heuvelt; Camp Damascus by Chuck Tingle; To Drive the Hundred Miles by Alec J. Marsh; Siren Queen by Nghi Vo; The Heart-Break Bakery by A. R. Capetta; Many Drops Make a Stream by Adrian Harley; Heaven Official's Blessing by Mo Xiang Tong Xiu; Add Magic to Taste; A Power Unbound by Freya Marske; The Last Sun by K. D. Edwards; Silver in the Wood by Emily Tesh; and Open Throat by Henry Hoke. Graphic 2/2 for this post.

Inspired by this post from the Queer Liberation Library, we asked our awesome rec-list contributors to name their one favorite read of 2023, and the result is a list wonderful in its diversity of formats, genres, characters, stories, and authors. Check um out!

What was YOUR favorite read of 2023? Dare ya to try to pick only one!

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Ten of Our Favorite Poems

April was National Poetry Month, and to celebrate we asked authors involved with Duck Prints Press to talk about their favorite (ideally queer) poems! For the poems in the public domain, we then recorded them and shared them on Instagram and/or Tiktok!

Join us, and get your poem on, with these ten lovely pieces!

To a Stranger by Walt Whitman (read by Nina Waters)

@duckprintspress

It’s National Poetry Month and we at Duck Prints Press are celebrating! Here’s Claire with one of her favorite poems, To a Stranger by Walt Whitman #booktok #queer #poetry #waltwhitman #duckprintspress

♬ original sound – duckprintspress

(Instagram Link)

At a Dinner Party by Amy Levy (read by Maggie Page)

@duckprintspress

Celebrate National Poetry Month with At a Dinner Party by Amy Levy, read by Maggie Page! #booktok #poetry #queer #amylevy #duckprintspress

♬ original sound – duckprintspress

(Instagram Link)

Halfway Down by A. A. Milne (read by Tris Lawrence)

@duckprintspress

Today for National Poetry Month, we have Tris Lawrence reading Halfway Down by AA Milne! #booktok #poetry #queer #aamilne #duckprintspress

♬ original sound – duckprintspress

(Instagram Link)

Because I Liked You Better by A. E. Housman (read by Maggie Page)

Bored: At A London Music by Horatio Brown (read by Maggie Page)

@duckprintspress

Are you feeling bored? Liven things up with some our favorite queer poets! This poem is Bored: at a London Music by Horatio Brown, read by Maggie Page #booktok #queer #poetry #horatiobrown #duckprintspress

♬ original sound – duckprintspress

(Instagram Link)

The Road Not Taken by Robert Frost (read by Tris Lawrence)

@duckprintspress

Today for National Poetry Month we have The Road Not Taken by Robert Frost, read by Tris Lawrence #booktok #poetry #robertfrost #duckprintspress

♬ original sound – duckprintspress

(Instagram Link)

Endymion by Oscar Wilde (read by Nina Waters)

@duckprintspress

Claire here again to share another favorite poem. This time, Endymion by Oscar Wilde! #booktok #poetry #queer #duckprintspress

♬ original sound – duckprintspress

(Instagram Link)

The Chariot by Emily Dickinson (read by Tris Lawrence)

Love Stronger than Death by Agnes Mary Frances Robinson (read by Maggie Page)

Apologia by Oscar Wilde (read by Maggie Page)

Honorable Mention: We couldn’t include “Stop All the Clocks” by W. H. Auden or “I Know a Man” by Robert Creeley because they’re not in the public domain, but they absolutely would have been included if we could have.

What are YOUR favorite queer historical poems and/or poets? Tell us in the replies!

(if you send something our way that’s in the public domain, maybe we’ll record it!)

Who We Are: Duck Prints Press LLC is an independent publisher based in New York State. Our founding vision is to help fan creators publishing their original works. We are particularly dedicated to working with queer authors and publishing stories featuring characters from across the LGBTQIA+ spectrum. Want to always hear the latest? Sign up for our monthly newsletter! Want to support the Press, read about us behind-the-scenes, learn what’s coming down the pipeline, get exclusive teasers, and claim free stories? Back us on Patreon monthly!

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“He Bears the Cape of Stars” and “She Wears the Midnight Crown” Books and Merchandise Now on Sale!

Duck Prints Press’s anthologies He Bears the Cape of Stars and She Wears the Midnight Crown, featuring 34 stories by 34 authors exploring the potential for mlm and wlw relationships growing and changing during unusual masquerades, are now available! From science fiction to fantasy to modern to historical, these anthologies take the reader to many different settings, with larger-than-life characters exploring the world around them, the people they meet, and themselves! The casts are as diverse as Pride itself, and whether they’re looking for love, a second chance, a companion, or a friend, these books have a little bit of everything!

HE BEARS THE CAPE OF STARS, featuring 17 mlm stories, is available for sale on:

The Duck Prints Press Website | Barnes and Noble | Kobo

SHE WEARS THE MIDNIGHT CROWN, featuring 17 wlw stories, is available for sale on:

The Duck Prints Press Website | Barnes and Noble | Kobo

…and many other major e-book sales platforms! And you can request your library purchase it through the e-book lending program of their choice!

AND THAT’S NOT ALL!

Extra merchandise from the masquerade anthologies crowdfunding campaign is now on sale too! Did you miss the campaign? Are you dying for an amazing tote bag, a gorgeous bookmark, an aromatic candle, a glossy sticker or two, a new patch, or some lovely queer art for your walls? You can get this merch, and lots of merch from our past campaigns, from our website NOW!

She Wears the Midnight Crown merchandise: art print | bookmark | dux sticker

He Bears the Cape of Stars merchandise: art print | bookmark | dux sticker

Other campaign merchandise: chibi masquerade patch | scented candle | tote bag

Was there campaign merch you wanted that’s not available on our store? We have very limited quantities left of our enamel pins, and we have a whole heck of a lot of seconds (as in, damaged copies) of the print books! If your interested, feel free to drop us a line on any of our social media platforms or at info at duckprintspress dot com – we’d be delighted to hook you up!

Come now to the Duck Prints Press website and GET YOUR BOOK ON! You’re not going to want to miss these amazing collections or any of the gorgeous merch!

(and if you can help us spread the word by sharing this post, we’d appreciate it a lot, too!)

Who we are: Duck Prints Press LLC is an independent publisher based in New York State. Our founding vision is to help fanfiction authors navigate the complex process of bringing their original works from first draft to print, culminating in publishing their work under our imprint. We are particularly dedicated to working with queer authors and publishing stories featuring characters from across the LGBTQIA+ spectrum. Love what we do? Want to make sure you don’t miss the announcement for future giveaways? Sign up for our monthly newsletter and get previews, behind-the-scenes information, coupons, and more!

Want to support the Press, read about us behind-the-scenes, learn about what’s coming down the pipeline, get exclusive teasers, claim free stories, and get backer-exclusive extras when you support our crowdfunding campaigns? Back us on Patreon or ko-fi monthly!

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Storygraph Giveaway: He Bears the Cape of Stars

A few days ago, we launched another giveaway on Storygraph! Last month, we gave away 10 copies of She Wears the Midnight Crown. This month, we’re giving away He Bears the Cape of Stars! Crowdfunding backers have now all received their copies, but we won’t be listing the anthologies on our website until March 15th, so this is an exclusive extra chance for non-campaign-backers to get their hands on a copy early!

What is Storygraph? The awesome independently owned-and-operated alternative to Amazon-owned Goodreads! Working with them as a publisher doing this giveaways has been phenomenal: they’re organized, receptive to feedback, interested in innovative, and responsive. We’re thrilled to continue working with them on giveaways. If you’ve wanted a Goodreads alternative for organizing your reading, posting your reviews, logging your book collections, and more, you should definitely check them out.

What is Duck Prints Press? We’re the indie publisher dedicated to helping creators transition from creating primarily fanworks to creating primarily original works! We especially focus on publishing works featuring LGBTQIA+ characters.

What is He Bears the Cape of Stars? Along with She Wears the Midnight Crown, He Bears the Cape of Stars is one of a a pair of anthologies which share the same theme, but feature different kinds of relationships. For these anthologies, we sought pitches for stories featuring masquerades – the more unusual, the better! While we love classic “historical setting, mistaken identity” shenanigans, we were looking for stories more out-of-the-box (under-the-mask?) than that. 17 authors contributed mlm stories to this collection, and the works range from heartwarming fluff through dystopian drama!

Want your own copy of this awesome, innovative collection? Enter our giveaway on Storygraph NOW!

Who we are: Duck Prints Press LLC is an independent publisher based in New York State. Our founding vision is to help fanfiction authors navigate the complex process of bringing their original works from first draft to print, culminating in publishing their work under our imprint. We are particularly dedicated to working with queer authors and publishing stories featuring characters from across the LGBTQIA+ spectrum. Love what we do? Want to make sure you don’t miss the announcement for future giveaways? Sign up for our monthly newsletter and get previews, behind-the-scenes information, coupons, and more!

Want to support the Press, read about us behind-the-scenes, learn about what’s coming down the pipeline, get exclusive teasers, and claim free stories? Back us on Patreon or ko-fi monthly and read your fill!

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First-Ever Giveaway for One of Our Titles!

Are y’all familiar with Storygraph? It’s the independent alternative to Goodreads, a lovely website that does a lot of what Goodreads does, but without the whole “being owned by Amazon” crap. It’s been running for a while now, and we’ve been on it since the minute we found out about it (and got a paid account as soon as they offered them – $40/year to support such an amazing project? Heck yeah! Not that anyone has to give them $$ to be clear, the site is free to use). They’ve been steadily expanding, adding functionality, unrolling more publisher- and author-oriented features, and generally being awesome. And, with all that in mind, we were thrilled to hear that they were introducing a Giveaways function (which, on Goodreads, is often a great way to get the word out about a book), and we jumped on the chance to offer our debut anthology Add Magic to Taste as part of the very first run of Storygraph giveaways!

But enough about them – what about the book we’re giving away?

For Add Magic to Taste, 20 authors have come together to produce all-new, original short stories uniting four of our absolute favorite themes: queer relationships, fluff, magic, and coffee shops! Our diverse writers have created an even more diverse collection of stories guaranteed to sweeten your coffee and warm your tart.

So, check out Storygraph if you haven’t already, and check out our giveaway and the other awesome titles on offering (such as our own A. L. Heard’s Choose Your Own Adventure story), and enter to win your own copy of Add Magic to Taste!

The giveaway is running until October 18th, 2022, so if you want to throw in your hat for one of the 10 digital copies on offering, this is your moment!

Check it out now!

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Now Live: Duck Prints Press’s Third Crowd-funding Campaign!

Duck Prints Press LLC is over the moon to share our next to anthologies with you: She Wears the Midnight Crown and He Bears the Cape of Stars!

These two anthologies share a common theme – masquerades – and each features different kinds of relationships. She Wears the Midnight Crown contains 18 wlw stories; He Bears the Cape of Stars contains 18 mlm stories. Both collections tell myriad stories exploring how these characters’ relationships develop, grow, and change while they attend or participate in masquerades!

Our 36 contributors have stretched their imaginations to present innovative stories exploring what a masquerade can be…and, of course, tell rich, engaging tales of wonderful queer folk finding love, companionship, acceptance, the queer platonic relationship of their dreams, or the found family they deserve. The collected works feature characters in all the colors of the Pride rainbow, queer and genderqueer, and these diverse individuals inhabit worlds ranging from science fiction settings where everyone must be masked to breathe, to fantasies where no one wears a literal mask but everyone shows the world a false guise, to iterations of the real world where some people lean into deception.

You’re definitely not going to want to miss it – you can buy one book or both books, some merch, or all merch – we’ve got 8 backer levels to help you get exactly what you want!

We’d love for you to attend the masquerade! Don your mask and read on…

The Seed&Spark Campaign for She Wears the Midnight Crown and He Bears the Cape of Stars runs from now through July 14th, 2022!

Go Forth, and Back It Now!

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Announcing: The Contributors to “He Bears the Cape of Stars” and “She Wears the Midnight Crown”!

36 remarkable authors—18 for He Bears the Cape of Stars, 18 for She Wears the Midnight Crown—have come together for this project. These authors have been toiling away on their stories since February 1st, 2022, and we’re currently work with them on edits to get them publication-ready. We’re delighted to share their work with you!

Contributors to He Bears the Cape of Stars:

Contributors to She Wears the Midnight Crown:

You can read about them—in their own words!—see select author portraits, and more, by clicking this link:

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NOW AVAILABLE: THE E-BOOK OF ADD MAGIC TO TASTE and Extra Kickstarter Merchandise!

Did you miss your chance to back our first Kickstarter? Did you back it, but have a friend who wants a copy? Have you just been itching to get some of the merch you didn’t get as a backer? Have you only just heard of us thanks to our recent call for applicants, and want to learn more about our first Anthology?

Now you can do all these things!

Duck Prints Press’s first anthology, Add Magic to Taste, is now available for sale on our website!

For Add Magic to Taste, 20 authors have come together to produce new, original short stories uniting four of our absolute favorite themes: queer relationships, fluff, magic, and coffee shops! Our diverse writers have created an even more diverse collection of stories guaranteed to sweeten your coffee and warm your tart.

Select extra/leftover merchandise from the Kickstarter is also available, including:

So check it out, and get some of the book that’s averaging over 4 stars on Goodreads and Storygraph, and the merch that our Kickstarter backers described as “absolutely beautiful,” “gorgeous,” “incredible,” and “absolute BEST IN CLASS.”

VISIT OUR SHOP NOW AND GET YOURS!