Odes to Tools available for barter

My weekly podcast is proving more expensive than I’d originally thought. Not only have I bought a new microphone (and am contemplating the purchase of a mobile digital recorder) but I’m having to buy more books, too, so I can interview their authors on the show. I believe in buying books and supporting authors, of course; it’s just that my income is extremely limited. I’ve actually thought about trying to get some underwriting support — that’s how desperate I am.

But this morning I got an email from John Miedema offering to barter his book Slow Reading — something I’ve been meaning to read for a while — for my Odes to Tools, and a lightbulb went off in my head. Why didn’t I think of this before? I lost no time in adding a note to the Via Negativa Contact page about the option of bartering with other authors (or musicians who have CDs out). It doesn’t have to be poetry, but obviously it does have to be something I want to read (or listen to). Self-published material is as eligible as anything else, but what will really help me decide is if you can point me to some of the content online. (For Odes to Tools, you can look at the first few pages on the publisher’s website, or even browse all the poems here.)

Now, if you’re shy, or otherwise uninclined to be a guest on the Woodrat Podcast, that’s fine — we can still barter. If you’ve already ordered Odes to Tools and would like to send me a review copy of your book for podcast consideration, that of course would be fine, too. My postal address — also on the Contact page — is PO Box 68, Tyrone, PA 16686 U.S.A.

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Dave Bonta (bio) crowd-sources his problems by following his gut, which he shares with 100 trillion of his closest microbial friends — a close-knit, symbiotic community comprising several thousand species of bacteria, fungi, and protozoa. In a similarly collaborative fashion, all of Dave's writing is available for reuse and creative remix under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License. For attribution in printed material, his name (Dave Bonta) will suffice, but for web use, please link back to the original. Contact him for permission to waive the "share alike" provision (e.g. for use in a conventionally copyrighted work).

17 Comments


  1. Awesome idea! My budget for books (or anything else fun) is almost nonexistent right now. I should try to write a book, and then I could swap copies for other books! There’s me some motivation to write.

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    1. Hey well, if that’s what it takes, I’m glad I made the offer! Since it’s print-on-demand, you have plenty of time — Odes to Tools isn’t going to sell out anytime soon.

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  2. So I have a different idea for you, since I don’t have a book of my own to offer. How about I share some poetry books that I have in my collection? A borrowers club, vs. barter?

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    1. Deb, didn’t you say you already ordered a copy of the Odes? If not, I owe you one in exchange for past things you’ve sent my way. Email me.

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      1. I have Tools, I was thinking if you wanted additional stuff. But maybe you only want your readers’/podcast people’s stuff.

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        1. Well, as far as this barter system is concerned, I’m interested in trading my creative output for other people’s. Granted, we already do that just by blogging and reading each others’ blogs; this is an extension of that into the analog realm.

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  3. Knitting. But you already have hats and stuff. And the weather’s getting warmer. But if you think of anything…

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    1. Well, if a certain former Africa correspondent for the BBC were willing to be a guest on the podcast and regale us with stories — and knitting tips and geekery — that would definitely be worth a chapbook!

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      1. That’s a very kind but entirely unexpected and rather scary thought upon which I shall have to cogitate further. You sure you don’t need a pair of socks?

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  4. With all these good offers you’re getting, I must try bartering more often. Knitted socks sounds great to me.

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    1. I’ve seen pictures of her handiwork, too — they’re likely to be beautiful as well as warm. Perhaps you could interest her in a copy of your book?

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        1. Lovely socks. After my own attempts at knitting, $199 seems like a fair price. Best wishes.

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        2. This is true. If I were to charge minimum wage for Odes to Tools, lord knows how many hundreds it would cost.

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  5. Mmmmmm! Well I did what you suggested at the outset and sent to Beth for my copy, though it meant having it unsigned. (It arrived last week and damned fine it is too!) However another copy wouldn’t go amiss, this time with your mark on it, so might you consider swop. A signed ‘Odes to Tools’ for a little drawing out of my plan chest?

    The unsigned copy can be found a good home with a poetry-loving friend.

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    1. Clive, email me your address and I’ll send you a signed copy.

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