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Meet the Member: Fairlight Books
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Posted by IPG

1 What's your company called?

Fairlight Books.

2 What do you publish?

We publish contemporary literary fiction, but that’s not all we do. Our goal is to connect with a wider community, as well as nurture and promote quality writing. We have an online literary blog where we share short stories from our favourite writers and book-related articles. We have also released a UK Writing Schools Directory on our website. It took us a couple of months to gather the information but the outcome is a free-to-use catalogue of creative writing schools and university degrees, all in one place. We will be keeping it up to date by adding new courses, and we hope it will encourage more people to take up and better their writing, giving us all even more quality stories to publish!

3 What's the story of the company?

Fairlight Books was set-up in Spring 2017, and we officially launched in July with a collection of short stories called The Madonna of the Pool by Helen Stancey. With so many great writers still struggling to find homes for their stories, and readers being numbed by the number of books being thrown at them, Fairlight was set up to encourage development in great writers and re-connect them with eager readers.

4 How's business?

We are delighted at the amount of quality writing that we have received since our launch—both full-length novels and short stories. At the moment we’re working on developing our Writing Schools Directory and building our list for 2018.

5 What do you enjoy about being independent?

We are all about building a community, and independent booksellers and publishers are the most enthusiastic and supportive bunch in the world. Being a part of such a talented group of people, sharing ideas and working towards the same goal—to find and promote new and exciting writers—is what we love the most about being an indie.

6 What do you think is the biggest single issue in publishing right now?

We think all of the issues in publishing stem from the market being filled with the same big names, and many publishers looking for polished manuscripts that are ready for publication, all to save time. The lovely thing about being a small independent publisher is that we are more open to new, fresh, talented and diverse voices who would not necessarily be picked up by other publishers. We try to nurture our authors, paying equal attention to all of them.

7 What one piece of advice would you give to a fellow independent just starting out?

Find an area in publishing you feel passionate about, focus on it and work to make it better!

8 What do you get out of belonging to the IPG?

Our first IPG Autumn Conference was a fantastic way to meet our fellow independent publishers and booksellers, as well as to hear some amazing insights from across the media sector. We are also looking forward to starting using the IPG Skills Hub.

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