Self Defense for Gentle People, by Zachary Kocanda-Print Books-Bottlecap Press

Self Defense for Gentle People, by Zachary Kocanda

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Zachary Kocanda
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Prose, chapbook, 32 pages, from Bottlecap Features.

Self Defense for Gentle People is a story about finding who you are when you’re finally on your own. A young woman leaves Chicago and the personal and professional losses that defined her life there to start fresh in a small Indiana town. New Hoosier life, same existential questions. Does a self-defense class taught by another loser have the answers?

This is a chapbook for people who just can’t get a win, who kill houseplants and buy groceries at the dollar store, who lose elections and fail grad school. It’s a lot to deal with alone. Don’t forget to breathe—and most importantly, be gentle with yourself.

Zachary Kocanda’s short fiction has appeared in the Oyez Review, Another Chicago Magazine, Hobart, and Vol. 1 Brooklyn’s Sunday Stories Series. This is his first chapbook. He lives in Illinois. Find more at