The little blog of Cairn Press. Small Press publisher of remarkable fiction. Where good books find a home.

You rock!

Thank you for the opportunity to read your work. Thanks to all the folks engaging in conversation, checking out our website, and hitting us up on other outlets. You rock!

If you’re waiting to hear from us regarding a submission, please hang tight while we are working through our readings, and piling our stones.

If you have something that you’d like to submit, we would love to read it during our next submission period, and hope you’ll consider us. No matter what, keep writing, keep working, and we’ll do the same. Kill it. That pen is a weapon.

We hope you’re gearing up for an exciting summer. It’s hot as hell in Tucson, and we are fired up about the July release of our first publication, As Close As You’ll Ever Be, written by Seamus Scanlon. Get ready to read. 

We hope you’ll join us at a literary event, and/or grab a beer with us. Stay tuned. In the meantime, if you’d like to tell us a fart joke, or drop us a line, we’re very open to that. 

Creep On Creepin On

Shakespeare sketch: A Small Rewrite

Dear Henry George

"To those who, seeing the vice and misery that spring from the unequal distribution of wealth and privilege, feel the possibility of a higher social state and would strive for its attainment. ”  - Henry George 

Dear Henry George,

If we had been born in the same era, perhaps we would have seen you on the streets of San Francisco and winked at the deviant look we imagine you had in your eye. 

Or perhaps by some wild whim, we would have had the pleasure of your company on the rocky boat you took around the world. It would not have occurred to us that you didn’t get beyond the 7th grade, and if we did know, it would have made you that much better.

Not having the unfortunate title of economist, we might have trusted you, and definitely would have been glad to stalk you at your local library. We bet you read a hell of a lot.  

A craftsman, you worked as a printer and labored at writing on ideas of social justice and the relentless divide between wealth and poverty in the United States. You know this. You finished a tome and named it Progress and Poverty

We hear that you found attention from editors only in the form of rejections. And if this was not endearing enough, you nevertheless believed in your work, and in 1879, published Progress and Poverty with the help of printer cohorts. We hear that you sent the author edition to various publishers, and one agreed to print it, IF you would provide the plates. Hell. You did.

Well over a hundred years later, out of the millions of copies printed, and to still be printed, Cairn Press owns one. The world is a crazy place, Henry George, still. Thank you for striving.


But after all it is idle to blame a small book for not being a big one; as Dr. Johnson said, ‘all claret would be port if it could.’

A Short History of Ireland by J.C. Beckett

Try This Most Useful Mayonnaise

The American Weekly is a defunct magazine apparently known for low quality paper and cheesy advertising. Perhaps presumptuous titles are good for business (Hello, Bank of America) because this little rag operated for a whopping 70 years, between 1896-1966.

During that time, they published some flat comics and lame coupon ads. We know this because a local bookstore had the fortune of preserving material from this magazine and reselling it to suckers like us. We’ve pasted one picture from 1927 for your viewing and WTF pleasure:                                 

                                     “Savory – mild

                                     Spicy or bland

                                     as you prefer”

“Enjoy the trill that comes when that hard-to-please man says ‘There’s some taste to this’. You’ll find the whole family endorsing your favorite salads, sandwiches, and cold pick-ups if you will merely change the dressing.

Taste is what tells, and Durkee’s Salad Dressing has in it that ‘something’ that adds a savory charm to even the simplest food.

Housewives everywhere, for more than sixty years have known Durkee’s Salad Dressing as the most useful mayonnaise because it suits every taste, is easily modified if preferred milder, and it keeps indefinitely in summer or winter.

Telephone your grocer to send a bottle of Durkee’s Salad Dressing with your next order, try it with one of the recipes below, or with one of your own and note the difference in taste.

We’ll gladly send you a sample bottle, containing enough dressing for four portions of salad, if you will use the coupon below.”


Durkee did not go the way of the Dodo bird, so if you’d like to buy this sustainable dressing, you should know gift wrap is available. But you’d be better off with a book from 1927. Why 1927? Well, dammit, why not 1927.  A year, as good as any other. 

  • To The Light House by Virginia Wolf, 1927
  • Home to Harlem by Claude McKay, 1927
  • Oil! by Upton Sinclair, 1927
  • Men Without Women by Ernest Hemingway, 1927
  • We by Charles A. Lindbergh, 1927
  • Amerika by Franz Kafka, 1927 (unfinished novel, published and titled by Max Brod)
  • La Confusion Des Sentiments by Stefan Zweig, 1927
  • Fine Clothes To The Jew by Langston Hughes, 1927

Eastward I go only by force; but westward I go free.

Walking by Henry David Thoreau

Thanks, Mom.

Our first publication is rooted in Ireland’s history of internal violence… The good people at Crime Fiction Lover kindly mentioned Cairn and the forthcoming publication, As Close As You’ll Ever Be, written by Seamus Scanlon.

Check out the link below because blogs can be fun and treacherous, like getting stuck in the elevator with your mother. The dull drum in the background is not the beat leading to escape, or a cry for help, but your unfortunate voice grown raspy from the inability to refuse an opportunity to talk about oneself.  

You’re welcome:

Seamus Scanlon’s winning story from 2011 – “The Long Wet Grass” is one of the most stunning pieces of Flash I have ever read. We got more emails and comments about it than possibly anything else we published…

Clem Cairns of Ireland’s Fish Publishing via Every Day Fiction 

The Long Wet Grass is published in The Fish Anthology 2011 and is on of the many wonderful pieces in the forthcoming publication, As Close As You’ll Ever Be, available July, 2012.