- FREELANCE EDITOR & CONSULTANT, San Francisco, CA, 1997-2002; 2006-present
- PUBLISHER, de la Tour Saint Rapunza, San Francisco, CA, 1999-present
Founded small alternative press; published illustrated lyric book and CD: Love and Loud Colours: Lyrics, Stories, and Fragments, by Edward Ka-Spel (2002).
- VARIOUS POSITIONS, Mercury House, San Francisco, CA 1993-2005
- Executive Director, 2000-2005
- Senior Editor, 1999
- Managing Editor, 1995-1998
- Assistant Editor, 1994-1995
- Editorial Assistant, 1993
- JUDGE, Fiction Grant Panel, Marin Arts Council, San Rafael, CA, 2003
- OCCIDENTAL COLLEGE, Los Angeles, CA: Bachelor of Arts (AB) English & Comparative Literature Studies.
Comprehensive Exam: Distinction | Minor: Psychology | Special emphasis: Women’s Studies | First Prize for nonfiction, Robert T. Moore/Argonaut Writing Contest.
- GOLDSMITHS COLLEGE, University of London, London, England
- EDITCETERA, Berkeley, CA: Continuing education classes/workshops taken include Developmental Editing, Substantive Editing I & II, Constance Hale’s Irresistible Book Proposals, Prescriptive vs. Descriptive Usage, Editing for the Web.
- MEMBER, Bay Area Editors’ Forum
- LinkedIn profile
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- SF STATION
ONE BOOK AT A TIME: NON-PROFIT PUBLISHERS PREFER TO STAY SMALL
Scott Esposito | 14 Nov 2004
. . .
Even though non-profit publishing can be wrought with pitfalls, many publishers probably wouldn’t expand even if they could. “If only sellable books were published, before long we’d have narrowed the availability of books down to just the best-best-sellers,” said Kirsten Janene-Nelson, [then director] of San Francisco-based Mercury House. “No new poetry, no avant-garde essays, no experimental fiction.”
Janene-Nelson says [Mercury House] survives by frugality.… In the face of poor pay, non-profit publishers’ dedication to books they feel to be important enriches the publishing industry, to all our benefit.
“As it is, the big presses are cutting out their authors who sell ‘only’ 15,000 or so,” said Janene-Nelson, “but a book that sells even 5,000 copies could have a life-changing effect on its readers. Think of how many artists were unappreciated in their time.”
- CLMP: COUNCIL OF LITERARY MAGAZINES &PRESSES
15 August 2002
. . .
TWO INDIE PRESSES CELEBRATE RECENT AWARD-WINNING BOOKS
Ken Lamberton … spent 12 years in prison in the Arizona desert. During his incarceration, he began to observe nature on its most minute level and draw conclusions about the social fabric of prison life. The result is Wilderness And Razorwire: A Naturalist's Observations from Prison, published by San Francisco-based Mercury House.
According to [then] director Kirsten Janene-Nelson, Lamberton began writing the book through a writing-in-the-prisons program headed by Richard Shelton. He approached the press in January of 2000 from prison, and the book was published while he was still serving his term. “People find it controversial. It is controversial. But I think Ken’s love of nature and his gentle tone and obvious remorse help to ease the controversy a great deal,” says Janene-Nelson. Such controversy didn’t stop the book, funded in part by a Lannan Foundation grant, from winning the 2000 JOHN BURROUGHS MEDAL FOR DISTINGUISHED NATURAL HISTORY WRITING for outstanding nature writing. The award, given annually since 1926, honors books that combine scientific accuracy, firsthand fieldwork, and creative natural history in the U.S.