Starting this month, Propriometrics Press titles will be distributed by Chelsea Green Publishing! We are very excited to work together with Chelsea Green, who shares our commitment to engaging and educational books that promote healthy, sustainable, and nature-focused living.
“We are thrilled to be working with Propriometrics Press and representing their titles,” says Michael Weaver, Trade and Export Sales Manager for Chelsea Green Publishing. “Movement does matter—both for human health and for connecting with the natural world—and Katy Bowman’s books, and Propriometrics’ entire catalog, are a timely and valuable addition to our list. They’ve already taught me personally to see movement in a new way, and I’m excited to share that perspective with as many readers as possible!”
What does this mean for you? All of our titles are still available through all of the usual channels: your local bookstore, Amazon, and wherever you buy our books! You can also find all the Propriometrics Press titles on the Chelsea Green website! Visit it to learn more, and check out their fantastic catalog.
After almost a year as working as Propriometrics Press’s marketing director, I finally had the opportunity to meet and connect with both Katy Bowman and Doniga Markegard in person, and get the chance to really #PracticeWhatYouPublish! Although I live in Portland and work remotely, I was lucky enough to be able to join Katy and Doniga at their Wildnerness Moves retreat and talk at the Patagonia headquarters in Ojai & Ventura, CA on September 22. For those who were unable to make it but are interested in what these types of events look like, this was my experience.
Katy and Doniga’s “Wildnerness Moves: Food and Farming Movements” retreat was held at a lovely farm in Ojai (Poco Farm) that is used mostly for teaching local school children about farming and livestock and where their food comes from. There’s a small orange orchard, a herd of goats, and very friendly proprietors. We started early in the morning with a circle of the 30–40 attendees to go around and say their favorite food movements, which ranged from picking fruits to grinding coffee to chewing.
Then Katy led us through some movement exercises, where she explained some of her teachings on alignment and the correct way of walking and carrying the load of our bodies. This was an invaluable in-person experience, since you were able to see Katy demonstrate both the right and wrong ways of holding, carrying, and moving your body!
After a short break, Doniga led us on a tracking hike in the area, where we examined the ways human involvement had changed the local landscape and looked for traces of animal activity. She pointed out raccoon tracks that led to a creekbed, and places where native live oaks thrived and where their environment was not ideal due to a lack of animal activity. It was amazing to be with Doniga as she shared techniques she had learned to look around our surroundings with owl eyes, and quietly walk like foxes through the terrain.
We then took a moment to eat an orange picked from the orchard—after asking for permission, as Doniga had taught us, and with Katy urging us to really be in tune with the experience of eating the orange— and then made ourselves useful on the farm by moving mulch around the orange trees, accidentally scaring a nest of mice in the process!
After some manual labor, making sure to move, squat, and carry as Katy had taught us in the beginning of the day, Poco Farm had set out a delicious and locally-sourced lunch for us that showcased the dairy, fruits, and vegetables grown in the area. To end the retreat, Doniga and Katy signed books that people bought or brought with them to the farm.
We were all exhausted and exhilarated by the morning, and met back up at the Patagonia flagship store in Ventura in the evening for Katy and Doniga’s talk on “Movement Matters: The Missing Piece from Our Sustainability Models.” The crowd at Patagonia was attentive and appreciative of Doniga and Katy’s in-depth discussion on how movement, food, farming, and sustainability all interconnect, and where we as a society are falling flat. It was especially poignant to see Doniga and Katy surrounded by Patagonia’s “Facing Extinction” climate action ads while talking about this topic! One thing Katy said sums it up well: “Eating without moving is not working for our bodies. Agriculture without movement is not working for the planet.”
I left these events with a renewed invigoration and a better sense of the concepts that both Doniga and Katy talk about in their books (Dawn Again for Doniga, and Movement Matters, Move Your DNA, etc. for Katy). If you ever get the chance to see one or both of these amazing, inspiring women in action, I highly recommend it!
And to see more, check out ABC 7’s Lori Corbin’s coverage of the event here!
As Propriometrics Press continues to grow and we gear up to launch a few new titles (keep up with our website and our Twitter and Instagram profiles for updates!), we are hoping to add a new publisher to our team—someone who can oversee projects, timelines, and big-picture stuff. See below for more information and our requirements!
Propriometrics Press is seeking a publisher for our dynamic and exciting non-fiction micropress. We want someone motivated, with keen marketing and business sense, excellent communication skills, and a lot of vision. This position will take approximately 20-30 hours a week, with flexible hours that accommodate busy periods and lulls. We are located in the Pacific Northwest; local candidates a plus. You would be overseeing a small team making a big impact; our backlist is full of bestsellers and award-winners.
Your tasks would include:
Managing budgets for backlist promotions, reprints, and new books
Liaising with our foreign rights agent, distributor, and printer on all tasks
Keeping big-picture schedules on track, including lead time for marketing and promotions
Managing our editorial, production, and promotions staff
Creating and leading marketing initiatives for front and backlist
Helping to plan and organize author events and book tours
Bringing new book ideas to the table
At least 5 years’ experience in book publishing, including at least 1 year in a senior management position, as a publisher preferred
A thorough and proven skill with book marketing and promotions
Contacts at major publications for review
A passion for making thought-provoking books that aim to shift our culture into a more sustainable, human-movement-based future
An understanding of the Propriometrics backlist and mandate, and a keen eye for next steps
Please submit a cover letter, detailed CV, and a thorough marketing plan you created and implemented for an existing book to Penelope at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Doniga Markegard—regenerative rancher, conservationist, and author of the memoir Dawn Again, has lots of events and appearances planned for the second half of 2019. Join her (and sometimes Katy Bowman, as well!) for these exciting events concerning her book, sustainable farming, food, and movement.
August 10–16, Montana. Doniga will be a guest instructor at a few Women in Ranching Gatherings at various ranches in Montana. These are invite-only events.
You might have heard that Roland & Galina Denzel, co-authors of Eat Well, Move Well, Live Well, have recently moved from California to a new home in Colorado. Want to know more about what they’ve been up to? Hear it from Galina herself below.
We’ve been writing together for 11 years and living together as a family for eight. During that time, I had a full-time job as a movement teacher and trauma healing specialist, and Roland worked as a print analyst for a large corporation, with evenings and weekends dedicated to writing and health coaching. We had very full and demanding lives, and we tried to maximize our self-care in the little time we had.
During these eight years together, we took greater and greater strides towards modifying our environment—we were always aware that a real food diet and exercise were not enough to offset the effects of a sedentary lifestyle, a noise-polluted environment, and a nature- and community-deficient life. So we moved from an apartment that had little light and plant growing space, where we literally grew our greens with a grow light, to a larger space with more light and room to teach cooking classes. Then we moved to a townhome with more growing space for veggies and edible flowers and a gathering space for friends that was closer to my studio so I could walk instead of bike, and much closer to wilderness trails than before. We were aware of how changing our living space created more opportunities for movement, for nature, for better food, for connection. We even had a quieter space to record our podcast! Yet, we felt that long workdays indoors, and some of our new dreams—relationship, creative and professional—were asking for yet another change in environment.
In May, we moved from California to Colorado. For me, it was a love at first sight experience, since I grew up next to mountains and have always felt so at home around peaks, trees, and snow-surrounded valleys. Roland, a California native, is still learning that weather is fun—and having four seasons in one day is totally a Colorado experience. Also, hail hurts!!
We’ve been blessed with wonderful friends and community here, as so many of our Nutritious Movement colleagues and friends live close by. We’ve also discovered that three of families we know and love are moving here later this year, independent of each other, and our hearts are so full!
Of course, not owning my movement studio and working more online with clients has created a whole new flow of the day—we are being conscious of more screen time, and truly dedicated to bookending our days outside in natural light. We’ve also found that gardening and badminton make incredible movement breaks outside! We were lucky to find a neighborhood with established old trees and native plant gardens, so each walk is truly a healing balm for the eyes. We have bunnies, squirrels, and even foxes here in Fox Hill, Longmont. The Rockies are just a short drive away, and there are plenty of people to hike with!
We’re finding that more outdoor time in natural light, more time to be with friends, and a community that supports care for the environment are truly nourishing us. Even something as simple as being able to compost 90% of our trash and dedicating ourselves to be as single-use and plastic-free as possible is making a huge difference in our mood and mental health. People are asking if we miss the ocean—who wouldn’t miss the ocean? Or the friends we have in California?! You have to grow your heart to hold everything you love and everything you are stepping into! We have many sweet memories of it and we know we will visit for long walks and swims soon!
What are we working on now that we are not in our 10-12 hour day full-time jobs? I am working on bringing new movement courses and workshops, as well as coaching offers, to our online school on eatmovelive52.com, and have been growing a beautiful and compassionate curriculum around emotional eating and conscious eating. In fact, I just finished a new free book called Peace with Self Peace with Food, which will be available for free for a short while, as readers become familiar with a nervous system approach to healing from the pain of emotional eating.
Roland took the big plunge out of the corporate world last year, and if you’ve ever done anything like that you know it’s scary as hell. Yet, he’s been consistent and passionate about helping others and he’s growing a wonderful community of people who are interested in losing weight in a kind and compassionate way through a real food lifestyle. He has a new program coming up, called Weight Loss Now. He’s also leading several Breakthrough coaching groups for people who are serious about making a change in their health trajectory. He’s also working actively on his urban fantasy novel and is helping out writers in his Indestructible author community live healthy and happy lives as they write long hours each day to make their book ideas reality!
Life has been good to us. We’ve said yes to our vision for a new season of life, and we are so blessed to be supported by beautiful nature, a home that can hold our work and life, and be a base for local learning and retreats, and a community of people who need nature and love it as much as we do. Many of you know that we chose Colorado because I want to go back to school here, and I can’t wait to tell you more about it next time.
For now, from us, the Denzels, happy reading and we hope that the tools, tips, and life we share inspire you to grow your dreams and make them happen wherever you are.
Do you know that Doniga Markegard, author of Dawn Again, was featured in a promotion with Patagonia recently? If you missed it, watch it below now!
Doniga is a regenerative farmer who provides grass-fed and pasture-raised beef, lamb, pork and chicken to their community in Half Moon Bay, California from her and her husband’s ranch, Markegard Family Grass-Fed. Their practices of regenerative farming, holistic planned grazing, and watershed stewardship helps to make their farm as environmentally-friendly as possible! Go, Doniga!
Just outside my front door there is a field of stinging nettles the size of half a city block. It is the healthiest plot of nettles I have yet to see.
It was not always that way. There was an old barn on the hill above, that once was a milking barn and then held moonshine during prohibition. The activities in the barn helped pay the mortgage on the ranch and supported the growing family of settlers. When my husband arrived on the ranch the barn was falling down, due to lack of maintenance. The new owners made money elsewhere and simply used the ranch as an escape from the modern day stresses and routine.
The barn was bulldozed into the ground. Remnants of the roaring Twenties and a family of farmers making a go at life in California would soon turn to dirt. That dirt would then be fresh breeding ground for seeds that were carried along the coastal winds, dropped by birds as they migrated or a fox as he marked a territory. The seeds that lay in the freshly disturbed earth were not those that dominated the surrounding grasslands. They were seeds that some call the name forbidden to utter in some circles, the dirty word that many groups dedicate themselves to seek out and conquer: Invasive Species.
Poison hemlock, ripgut brome and medusahead all are icing on the cake of the conqueror. As these species drift around the world, looking for an opportunity to propagate, we have a choice to view them as a problem or an opportunity. So when the dirt became home to Italian thistle and poison hemlock, we put in the pigs. In nature, waste equals food, so if we are to mimic nature, everything eats and is eaten. When we want to sculpt our lives and our landscapes, that basic principle can help us avoid dissonance. The pigs did what they do: eat everything. They ate the roots of the plants because we let them stay long enough to feast on the starchy taproots of the thistle. Then we moved them off and let the ground rest and recover from the disturbance.
Winter set in, and soon a diversity of plants began to establish in the pig fertilized and disturbed earth. We did not spread any seeds, just waited and watched as the drifters found a settling place amongst the diversity and chaos. The result is a field of stinging nettle that is so healthy that the top leaves are the size of my hand—despite the drought—rivaling those of the Pacific Northwest, where everything is greener and bigger. So when life brings us stinging nettles, what more are we to do than to eat, a basic behavior we share with all life on earth. The act of gathering, preparing food and then the celebration of eating helps us to tap into that familiar comfort of not only surviving, but thriving.
Each species has a role and once we begin viewing this diversity as something to celebrate rather than select, isolate and destroy, the better off our lives and landscapes will become. The ranches on which our livestock graze support 66 species of birds and 157 species of plants. In all this diversity there is food being grown. How we tend to that food source is up to each and every individual. For our family, in spring, an abundance of stinging nettle means it’s time to make stinging nettle chips!
Recipe: Stinging Nettle Chips
Top 3 or 4 sets of leaves of the stinging nettle plant before they flower in the early spring
Apple Cider Vinegar
Harvest the nettle, be creative, collect as many as you can. See page 211 of Dawn Againto learn how to harvest without gloves. I also recently worked with my daughter Quince and I held a bag under the plant while she carefully cut the leaves with scissors. Enjoy the adventure of interacting with the plant.
Find a bowl large enough to fit all the nettles. Pour in the olive oil and vinegar about 3 parts oil to one part vinegar. Stir in the nutritional yeast until you have a slurry. Add in a couple pinches of salt to taste. Set all the trimmed leaves of the stinging nettle as well as the top group of leaves that form a bud. With a wooden spoon gently massage the oil mixture into the nettles until they are thoroughly coated. Pour in more oil as needed to coat the nettle. Take your time with this, part of the process is to massage out the stingers. Don’t tear the leaves, just work the oil into the surface. You know when it is ready when you pick up a raw nettle leaf, eat it and it does not sting your tongue. When you taste it, go through a sense meditation before you place the leave on your tongue. Then use your intuition to add more salt, fat or acid to the mix. See page 60 of Dawn Again for sense meditation. Preheat the oven to 300 degrees and place the nettles flat on a cookie sheet. Cook for about 20 mins, turning half way through until the leaves are crisp but not burnt.
This fall, we’ll publish Dawn Again: Tracking the Wisdom of the Wild, by Doniga Markegard. It’s a riveting memoir of exploration and survival. As a young girl, DonigaMarkegard was thrown from her horse and knocked unconscious. She remembers an out-of-body experience that revealed to her the great mystery at the heart of life. In Dawn Again, she writes of the journey that experience sparked.
At a wilderness immersion school, medicine people and wildlife trackers train her in indigenous ways. Her search for an authentic life takes her hitchhiking across the West and to Alaska, where she falls deeply in love with tracking wolves and the rigors of surviving in the wilderness.
Doniga seeks a vision and discovers her purpose, only to find herself on a cattle ranch, falling in love and starting a family, and learning a new way to apply the deep, unshakeable lessons of the wild.
We’re really excited about this book and we knew it needed a really special cover. So we turned, as we do, to our incredibly talented designer, Zsofi Koller. She did not disappoint. We took the opportunity to chat with Zsofi about the cover for Dawn Again, and what went into making it.
How do you approach the design of a cover for a new book?
Book cover design is about making an intangible tangible. On one hand, there are endless options. ENDLESS. On the other hand, if you listen to what the book is about—and I mean, listen with ALL your senses—some ideas become clear tracks to follow. And I follow those tracks, and see what happens.
When I’m doing first cover design, the book itself might not be written fully yet, or I might not have access to the full manuscript. So I’ll often get a debrief from the editor or author about the WHAT of the book. Not just the what—also, the spirit and heart of it. And I’ll daydream about it, and I’ll go to the bookstore and roam around thinking about it, and I’ll look at approximately a billion things online to get ideas.
And eventually I start to pile together ideas from my mental toolbox, and often times visual cues from my teammates, and it starts to take shape. And then I run my first concepts by our team, and we take it from there.
You chose not to use a photograph for this cover. Why not?
Well, we did try that idea. Pretty cute, right? (We were still ironing out the subtitle at that point, too, it seems!)
But it wasn’t the right idea for this book. This book isn’t best expressed by a photo. There’s a side of introspection, of spiritual exploration, that is best captured by a slightly more evocative imagery. So the thought of a wolf that embodied a sunrise felt too perfect to not use.
What were some of the particular challenges in designing this cover?
In total honesty, this cover didn’t feel like it had challenges. It came together pretty seamlessly. There were a lot of different iterations of sunrises and wolves though!
How do you know when you’ve landed on the right design?
When it makes someone on the team cry. And I can just feel it, too. When I come back and look at the design 24 hours later and still love it, I know it’s working. When I want to show it to my husband, it’s working. When I want to sweep everything into the garbage bin and keep working, it’s not right yet. And there’s really no short cut to the process. Sometimes it takes less time, or more time, but it’s always a process.
What do you most like about this final design?
I love the colour palette. A lot of our covers tend to be quite bold, which I love as well, but I enjoy the softness of the greens, pinks, oranges, and cream in this cover. It certainly feels true to a glorious dawn. I’m also very fond of the fonts we landed upon. A good font for a book is a little gift that keeps giving. I’m so looking forward to the interior design—the pieces have been laid in play so nicely by the cover, it makes the whole design process flow smoothly.
This special guest edition of the Propriometrics Press blog is written by our publisher and best-selling author, Katy Bowman.
I identify as a mover, but I also write a lot about movement. I’m a mover who writes. I think the way I identify is key, as it influences how I get my writing done. Because I define myself as a mover, I’m rarely unmoving—even when I’m being productive in ways we think of as sedentary.
I’ve written eight books (EIGHT BOOKS!) in the last few years, so clearly I’m in a passionate relationship with my computer. Also, I love books. I love reading them, taking pictures of them, and discussing them. Books have been key to my life. They not only teach me facts, they teach me new ways of seeing the world. So, reading and writing. How do those go with movement when both seem so sedentary?
Move Your DNA (and also Don’t Just Sit There) are books that show how to infuse movement into the non-exercise parts of your day. The movements are smaller than large feats of exercise, but they’re movements nonetheless. Often, getting more movement (and moving more of you) comes down to positioning yourself differently.
When you hold up your own body instead of leaning it against the back of a chair, you use your core muscles more subtly than you do when holding a plank, sure, but you can do it while you work or read. Cycling through sitting cross-legged, sitting with your legs in a V, or kneeling while you chop your veggies for dinner is an easy way to stretch. Wearing minimalist shoes (or no shoes) gives all the muscles in your feet a chance to strengthen, even with no added “exercise” time. Standing up to email, working outside whenever possible so your body is responding to fluctuations in light, temperature, sound, wind velocity, and more—all these things add movements to your life you may never have considered before.
Propriometrics Press is a #practicewhatyoupublish company. Meaning, the books we publish infiltrate the lives of our staff and authors. Many of you have asked “what position do you read or work in?” so I thought I’d show you how all of us work with books on the move.
Our editor-in-chief, Penelope, nature lover, often works outside.
If she’s not outside, it’s likely blizzarding (anyone in Nova Scotia will tell you that should be a word). If stuck inside, she’ll create an obstacle course and walk it a couple times an hour because movement and creativity are related and really, it just makes us feel better overall.
Our book covers are all dynamic thanks to Zsofi and her dynamic workstation.
Note: Canine co-opting is a thing. You’ve been warned. #theydontcallitdowndogfornothing
Now and then our Dynamic Aging authors, Lora, Shelah, Joan, and Joyce come down out of the trees to work. Whether it’s a standing work desk, exercise-reading hybrids, or simply going outside, what you see modeled here are ways to move more of you.
Sometimes, oftentimes, it takes less to move more. Less leg (on the table) means more leg (positions not available in a chair, and use getting up and down from her lowered desk) for Stephanie, our Director of Operations.
And finally, some of my favorite read-exercise hybrids involve my piriformis and legs up the wall.
Some of my less favorite (or perhaps it’s just less productive) movements include working with my children, literally, on my back.
You can also watch this video of me working over a 60-minute period (it’s sped up to two minutes because watching me work is sort of like watching paint dry) to see how much movement goes into my “office” time—a time many perceive as mandatory stillness.
So there you have it. Books can move you. Not only your mind, but your body too.
So, in case you missed it, one of our books was on The Today Show on Friday, no big deal (totally a very big deal). First of all, what a total thrill to see Katy Bowman and some of her Dynamic Aging co-authors on national television! And of course, the idea that millions more people were able to gain access to the ideas and possibilities presented in Dynamic Aging is the real fuel for our collective fire around these parts.
So that part was awesome enough, and then around mid-day Eastern time, Dynamic Aging started charging up Amazon’s best sellers list, finally coming to rest in the number two position, where it stayed for just about twenty four hours. At this writing, it’s still firmly in the top 50 books. You guys, out of more than thirty million titles. Let me give you a bit of perspective on this. Propriometrics Press is a very small company, with one full-time employee and a ragged band of independent contractors. We’ve all been together in person exactly one time, and it was just a few months ago. Getting our book on The Today Show was a massive accomplishment. Watching it climb the charts and compete alongside books published by the Big Five was a pinch-me-I-must-be-dreaming experience. Seeing it still sitting comfortably in the top 100 books today—I don’t know how to explain the feeling. We do not do a lot of resting on our laurels, but we are pretty good at celebrating our success with long strings of celebratory emoji, like this:
The part of all this that remains the most awesome is hearing from readers. So, if you’ve had a chance to look at Dynamic Aging, we’d love to hear from you. Drop us a line in the comments if you like, and if the spirit moves you, maybe review the book on Amazon—reviews of all kinds help other readers decide whether a particular book is for them.
And now, it’s on to the next! (see under: laurels, not resting on). We are getting ready to release an expanded edition of Move Your DNA in just a few weeks. Tell you more about that soon!