Go into any bookshop in the UK and you might marvel at the vast sea of popular literature, often filled with similar characters, recurring themes and ‘in-vogue’ genres. Major publishers seem to be concerned with spotting ‘the next big thing’, books that hold the potential to generate bestselling series, film adaptations and global franchises. All it takes is one big hit and what follows is a stream of almost identical work, hoping to piggy-back on its success and maximise on trends of popular interest.
Enter the Indie publishers, working to unearth great writers and give voice to the otherwise unheard, printing debut authors and experimental work alike. “Literature is not the same thing as publishing”, reads the tagline at the end of each book published by US independent Coffee House Press. Many independent presses are working with a similar ethos, striving for quality and providing opportunities for a wide range of literature from writers of every denomination.
This event will explore the influence that Indie presses exert upon the publishing world and examine how they are changing the way that books are commissioned, sold and consumed. And in an age of the six-figure book deal, what are the politics of operating in the shadow of bigger publishing houses? Join Kevin Duffy, co-founder of Bluemoose Books and Valerie Brandes of Jacaranda as they discuss the politics of indie publishing with moderator, David Barnett.