On 21 December 1817, the poet John Keats wrote his brothers, George and Thomas about the quality that forms a [wo]man of achievement, especially in literature.” He said: “At one it struck me what quality went to form a man of achievement, especially in literature, and which Shakespeare possessed so enormously—I mean negative capability, that is when a man is capable of being in uncertainties, mysteries, doubts, without any irritable reaching after fact and reason.”
This important statement about being capable of contemplating the world without the desire to try and reconcile contradictions and doubts became the philosophy behind the journal Negative Capability. The first issue was published in Mobile, Alabama in July 1981. At that time, the Advisory Editors were: David Diamond, Leon Driskell, Richard Eberhart, Dale Edmonds, Jay Higginbotham, Roald Hoffman, X.J. Kennedy, Richard Moore, Karl Shapiro, W.D. Snodgrass, Diane Wakoski, Eugene Walter and Sophie Wilkins. The journal became one of the more prominent journals in the United States. Negative Capability Press was started as well with the publication of Louisiana Creole Poems, translated by Calvin André Claudel and also published in 1981.
Negative Capability Press has been publishing quality books and a journal for 34 years. In late fall, a special anniversary issue was published entitled Thirty-Three. The press published 14 books in 2014 alone.
Slated for 2015-2016 are books by the following authors: Joe Berry (novel); Kristina Darling; (poetry); Jennifer Grant (poetry); Barbara Henning (poetry); Faith Kellerer (poetry); Barry Marks (poetry); Carlo Matos (poetry); Teal Mims (poetry); Joyce Pair (literary criticism—F.Scott Fitzgerald); Janet Passehl (poetry); Vivian Shipley (poetry); Kenneth O. Simon (memoir); and Glenda Slater (poetry).
Publisher, Sue B. Walker, Ph.D. and Associate Publisher, Megan Cary, M.F.A. continue to be committed to publishing quality books of exciting and innovative poetry, fiction, and nonfiction. We work diligently with our authors and view our publishing endeavors as a mutual commitment toward excellence.