We seek collaborators who are interested in delving into creativity, wonder, and experimentation. Our current roster of Raptor Books is only the beginning, and we’re so excited to embark on stellar projects with other makers and artists! Email us at houseofraptor [at] gmail [dot] com.
Commissioning projects through Raptor
Raptor provides art and binding for authors and organizations looking to provide high quality, hand-made art objects that are sure to be treasured by readers, artists, and collectors alike. Ideal for chapbooks, special editorial projects, membership/patron benefits, galas, and fundraising incentives, Raptor provides a quick turnaround time, attention to detail, and financial transparency. We are committed to joyful, expansive, and kind communication. In addition to my labor, maintaining the press, and taxes, a portion of every commission fee goes towards the QTBIPOC Fund to provide book-making services to authors who can’t afford our standard rate.
The following services are included in our standard rate:
Art direction and production: Raptor will provide and produce original artwork for covers, interiors, and ephemera.
- Starting in 2022, Raptor prints all covers, fabric, and custom end papers in-house using a Woodzilla hand press, resulting in one-of-a-kind art objects and a quick turnaround.
- For examples of Raptor-produced books, please see our Press Books page.
- We are also happy to provide cover art for books that will be produced elsewhere. If you are interested in commissioning cover art or ephemera only, please email us at houseofraptor [at] gmail [dot] com.
Interior design and optional layout: Raptor will provide interior book design services, working with you on choosing paper, ephemera, and textures for your book. Should you be interested in us laying out your interiors, we are happy to do so.
- Organizations and collectives are responsible for all factchecking and editorial work, and should be prepared to start work with Raptor with finalized copy.
- Individual authors will be provided with basic in-layout copyediting, although they will be responsible for factchecking and final editorial read-throughs.
- Raptor utilizes InDesign and Adobe Acrobat for all layout and proofing work, as well as video conferencing.
- Should you wish that Raptor coordinate printing the guts of your book, our press of choice is The Fox Company. We are also happy to work with a printer with which you’ve already established a relationship. Please note that all clients are responsible for interior printing costs in addition to the standard Raptor fee. QTBIPOC authors have the option to apply for the QTBIPOC Reduced Rate, which includes interior printing costs.
Binding: Raptor uses a variety of binding techniques, most often our signature three-punch saddle stitch. We are very open to learning and employing experimental and unconventional binding techniques!
Teaching: Raptor collaborators have the opportunity to come to Press Day, where you will learn how to make books by participating in the production process. Press day is usually 4 hours long, and refreshments will be provided.
Because we charge flat fees, print runs are based on the intricacy of the project. If you’re looking for designs like, for example, Hurricane Butterfly, where we used tissue and hand- painted each cover, the run must be less than, say, a book like The Great Good News of Your Own Voice, in order to maintain the 6-week timeline. Therefore, it’s important for you to have an idea of how many books you’d like to publish and how intricate of a book you’re envisioning when you contact us. From any run of books, Raptor keeps ten copies for the archives.
Raptor’s services and rates are based on a 6-week production time, with the first 2 weeks reserved for planning and experimentation. We require that the client agrees to meeting via video conferencing, and upholding COVID-19 safety precautions if meeting in-person. Starting with finalized interior copy and ending with the delivery of your books, we keep to the following schedule:
Week 1: Initial meeting, contracts, conceptualize design; (optional) interior layout. Deposit due.
Week 2: Finalize art and book design; (optional) interiors sent for printing.
Weeks 3-5: Cover production and binding prep
Weeks 6-7: Binding and packing. Balance and materials reimbursement due.
Week 8: Delivery
For all commissioned projects, there are three financial pieces: My labor cost, materials, and printing the book text. While Raptor strives to be budget conscious, the cost of materials and printing vary from project to project, depending on how intricate the book is, how we get interiors printed, etc. Because of this, we’re only able to list our labor costs here, and we ask that you budget at least an additional $2,000 for materials and printing costs.
Our flat labor fee, which differs based on the client, is as follows:
Artists/ Authors/ Collectives: $4000, plus materials (paper, fabrics, ink, thread), with an initial $2000 deposit. Materials reimbursement and balance due upon completion of the project in order for books to be delivered. Clients based in New York City are eligible for free delivery. Outside of the five boroughs, the client is responsible for shipping costs. Authors and artists are wholly responsible for pricing and selling their books.
If this rate is prohibitive, and you identify as QTBIPOC (Queer/ Trans Black, Indigenous, and People of Color), you are eligible to apply for the QTBIPOC Reduced Rate, which includes printing and materials. If you’re interested in this option, fill out our contact form and tell me your budget, and we’ll see what we can do.
**Please note that chapbooks often disqualify poets from applying for First Book Award contests. If you are an unpublished author hoping to submit your manuscript for one or several contests, be sure to let me know the publishing requirements so that we can see if collaborating with Raptor is possible/ look for loopholes.
Non-Profit/ 501(c)3: $5000 plus materials (paper, fabrics, ink, thread), with an initial $2500 deposit. Materials reimbursement and balance due upon completion of the project in order for books to be delivered. Clients based in New York City are eligible for free delivery. Outside of the 5 boroughs, the client is responsible for shipping costs.
For-Profit Organizations/ Colleges and Universities: $6000 plus materials (paper, fabrics, ink, thread), with an initial $3000 deposit. Materials reimbursement and balance due upon completion of the project in order for books to be delivered. Clients based in New York City are eligible for free delivery. Outside of the 5 boroughs, the client is responsible for shipping costs.
If you would like to commission a book through Raptor, please reach out to us via our contact form.
About our books
Our most recent book is a collaboration with the already felt project, a “year-long revolt centering queer and trans Black poets and poets of color.” Curators Alexis Aceves Garcia, Devyn Mañibo, and danilo machado commissioned Raptor to design and bind volume 1 of their chapbook series, which was published in May, 2021. More information can be found at alreadyfelt [dot] com, and on our Already Felt books page.
Raptor produces a zine series called Headspace, for which pieces are solicited, edited, and published largely by our founder. MACK, our latest, is a book about kissing.
Our first stand-alone book, Hurricane Butterfly is a collection of poems dedicated to the spirit of the late Pete Burns written by Cody Ross Romero and Kevin Salvaggio.
In early December 2018, Raptor published The Great Good News of Your Own Voice, an anthology of poems written in a free drop-in workshop that took place in Bed-Stuy from March to May. The book was commissioned by Poet and Dear Friend Aracelis Girmay (who facilitated the workshop), and sponsored by the Center for Justice at Columbia University.
For more information on any of our publications, please visit our Books page, and click through the titles to see more on each chapbook.
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