Josh recently posted/shared this information to the DR Facebook page but we know we can reach out even farther by sharing here. Read. Have your pants set on fire. Do something about it.

Books & Shovels is a cross country traveling bookstore and publisher sharpening its word-teeth, aiming at the throat of America. Founded by Jeremiah Walton, backed by Nostrovia! Poetry and UndergroundBooks, B&S distributes publications donated from publishers, authors, poets, musicians, artists, graffiti vandals, anyone who is passionate and looking to get their work out to a greater audience. This project is about pushing passionate living over making a living.

They operate on street corners, shouting poems at those who otherwise would not care, at open mics and slams, festivals and abandoned parking lots, meshing grass roots promotions with opportunities of the 21st century’s outreach and connectivity. Walton’s focus is primarily poetry, but B&S distributes passion. Passion can be found in all corners of creation.

This is not for academics or rogue artists, alt lit or experimental, this isn’t just for the writers of poets, musicians and street artists. This is to break boundaries, snap borders, to encourage dreaming and loving of yourself and those around you. They target the youth. They are the youth.

Check it out!
Pledges to launching Books & Shovels can be made at:

The Books & Shovels website can be found at: 

Join the Books & Shovels Facebook event to keep up to date with the project’s progress, the contests they’re hosting, and talk among other artists. Feel free to promote your own work, but please, do not spam, and be considerate of others.

-Josh, Paige, Jessica & Sarah


Simply put, a poetry slam is the competitive art of performance poetry. Established as a means to heighten public interest in poetry readings, slam has evolved into an international art form emphasizing audience involvement and poetic excellence.

Slams attract audiences not only in urban centers like New York, Chicago, and Los Angeles, but also in areas as distant as Singapore or as remote as Fargo, North Dakota. They are held in bars, bookstores, coffeehouses, universities, street corners, and theaters.

If poetry is to become a part of the general reader’s life, it must do so in variety and abundance, on both the page and the stage and all the media in between.

Poetry slams are not for the faint of heart. If you go to a slam and stick around long enough, you’ll probably hear a poem you like. Or a poem you loath. Or a poem that changes your mind or your underwear. You decide. With that said, here is a powerful example of what you’re more than likely to find should you ever decide to attend a slam.

Neil Hilborn is a slam poet with OCD. His love poem “OCD” was recorded (by Button Poetry) at an event in Rustbelt earlier this year. Hillborn says the tics “are an intentional performance, but they are also my actual tics. Sometimes in performance they become real.” At the line “I leave the door unlocked,” brace yourselves, because your heart is going to drop through your stomach.


Paige Edenfield, Poetry Editor
Decades Review