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November 2, 2023—On the cusp of our 50th anniversary year (2024), Graywolf Press is delighted to announce a new media initiative: Graywolf Lab. In the spirit of experimentation with which the press began—as a publisher of hand-sewn, limited-edition chapbooks—and with a commitment to looking beyond the conventional boundaries of the book, Graywolf Lab will expand our publishing program to digital, visual, and audio spaces.

Graywolf Lab is an online platform for interdisciplinary conversations and new writing. Each Lab starts by gathering artists for a roundtable discussion of a particular theme. Over several months, we solicit responses to the roundtable from additional artists, writers, and thinkers.

Our first installment of the Lab explores the theme of “time,” and the first Lab roundtable is available as a podcast at graywolflab.org and all major streaming platforms. The episode features a discussion with Kweku Abimbola, author of the poetry collection Saltwater Demands a Psalm (published by Graywolf); Lisa Hsiao Chen, author of the novel Activities of Daily Living; Daniel Alexander Jones, a performance artist, theater artist, and educator; and Thao Nguyen, best known for her band Thao & the Get Down Stay Down. The podcast will also host episodes between Lab themes, including conversations led by Graywolf Press authors.

The first roundtable acted as a springboard for additional Lab pieces published on the online platform, which include a short story by Hiromi Kawakami, an interactive “disappearing poem” developed by Max Neely-Cohen and Katy Ilonka Gero, and spotlights on tap dancer Ayodele Casel, theater artist Kaneza Schaal, and others. The issue will host an open call for submissions later this month.

Graywolf’s director and publisher Carmen Giménez says, “Graywolf books have always been conversation starters. Graywolf Lab allows us to make those conversations more legible—and to extend them beyond the printed page to engage other artists, thinkers, and disciplines. We hope it will become a space to cultivate great ideas, to spend time with particularly thorny topics, and to create a dialogue that ripples outward.”

We invite you to explore our inaugural issue at graywolflab.org. Please reach out to Publicity Director Claire Laine (laine@graywolfpress.org) with inquiries about covering the launch of this new initiative. 

Thank you to the New Chapter Campaign donors for funding the development of Graywolf Lab. Special funding for Graywolf Lab: The Podcast was provided by Chris LaVictoire Mahai and Daniel Mahai.