My thoughts on the Chicago Tribune’s new Printer’s Row Journal
Those fine folks over at the Chicago Tribune are trying something new; pulling their literary section out of the actual paper and making it a stand-alone part of the paper available to subscribers who upgrade their subscriptions. Will subscribers go for it? Who knows? (It’s another $100 a year, which may be off-putting to some folks, but again – who knows.)
This past Sunday, a preview edition of the new journal – dubbed “Printer’s Row” – was distributed with the regular newspaper, and I happily snagged one.
I really like it, honestly.
I mean, I’m always a fan of books getting more press, and Printer’s Row showcases many new releases, as well as people and events happening in the literary world, with a focus on Chicago.
There’s a “Hot off the Press” column by Elizabeth Taylor, which is meant to talk about upcoming titles and soon to be released books. There are big features on Dave Eggers and Sara Paretsky, several reviews, “News from the Chicago Literary Scene,” a list of the best sellers, and information for book clubs, among other things. Also, there’s a whole page article about Sara Levine’s new book, “Treasure Island,” which was of special interest to me since it’s #1 on my “Things I need to read” list at present. (FYI – I’m planning to keep it local/shop indie and purchase it from The Book Cellar this coming week. So there.)
In addition to the journal itself, subscribers will get a stand-alone book each week, too. For this initial release, we get Billy Lombardo’s short story, “Clover,” which is an entertaining read about an English teacher. Lombardo himself is an English Literature/Creative Writing teacher in Chicago, so again the Trib is keeping it local.
“Printer’s Row” isn’t for everyone, but for the booknerds of the Windy City it’s a really good effort. Here’s hoping the Trib folks flesh it out a little more and are able to keep it going.