1 What's your company called?
Holland Park Press.
2 What do you publish?
Literary fiction, novels, novellas, short story collections and poetry. We specialise in giving first-time English-language authors a chance to be published, as well as in promoting Dutch literature in two ways: by publishing Dutch authors in Dutch and English and translating classic Dutch novels.
3 What's the story of the company?
After years working as a director of an electronic publishing company, I [Bernadette Jansen op de Haar] decided to use my expertise to publish what I really like: fiction and poetry. I founded the company in 2009 and I run it with my brother, a Dutch author who has been published by three established publishers in the Netherlands. He brings in-depth knowledge about Dutch literature to the company and is a source of inspiration. It’s great to combine my knowledge of all things electronic with my love of the printed book.
4 How's business?
It is doing fine. One of our poetry titles, 100 Dutch-Language Poems, has won awards and sold very well, and I have high expectations for our fiction titles, especially The White Crucifixion, a novel about Marc Chagall which will be published in February. We distribute across the globe and print in the UK, US and South Africa.
5 What do you enjoy about being independent?
I enjoy being able to publish just what I like and how I like it. We accept unsolicited manuscripts all year round, and one of the most exciting things is finding a wonderful new manuscript in your inbox.
6 What do you think is the biggest single issue in publishing right now?
In our field of fiction and poetry I think we are in danger of producing too many titles of not high enough quality.
7 What one piece of advice would you give to a fellow independent just starting out?
Don’t start a publishing house if you want to become rich—but do if you feel passionate about quality books and are not afraid to put in a lot of hours.
8 What do you get out of belonging to the IPG?
Support, advice, great offers and the opportunity to network with fellow independent publishers.