Wednesday 18 August 2010

I Just Started a Publishing House

Some of you know this from snippets that've been leaking out, but now I'm coming out and clean and saying it how it is. A lot of people have told me for some time I should. Now, finally, I've worked out the way I want to do it, and I have. And I have the first two books coming out in November.

As you might expect, eight cuts gallery press is not like other publishing houses. To start with, we won't make a penny's profit from your book.

As you'd expect for part of my new project eight cuts gallery, the press will focus on a very narrow niche of books, within the contemporary urban fiction area if you had to put a genre to it. I would love to receive submissions, but like I say, this isn't a regular press. I'm only interested in submissions from writers who buy into what I'm doing (metaphorically, it's not a vanity press).

Which is what, exactly?

Well, first and foremost, I want to whip up a storm about the very best stuff that's out there, the kind of stuff I want to read, the kind of stuff that for one reason or another may find it hard to find a home in the mainstream. Our first two offerings, for example, are around 25-30,000 words. I'll also be bringing out poetry and short story combos. I also want to give the very best self-published works a chance to storm the major literary prizes that currently will not accept self-published novels.

eight cuts gallery press is an integral part of the overall eight cuts gallery project, designed to bring great literature to the public's attention regardless the format, the style, the commerciality; regardless anything save the fact it's great literature.

So what are we about?

we will

  • release an eight cuts gallery press print on demand paperback version of your book, without an ISBN, although you may attach an ISBN to other formats of your book

  • enter the eight cuts gallery press edition of your book for major literary prizes, in consultation with you

  • allow you to produce any additional versions you wish in any formats, and provide formatting and editing for those other versions, as well as putting you in touch with top producers in alternative formats

  • publicise and sell your book in all formats

  • take no money from sales of the eight cuts gallery press edition of your book (the exception being where your book is short or longlisted for a major literary award, in which case we will take a royalty from sales – yes, you read that the right way round – until the marketing fee the prize requires us to hand over is recouped)

  • mention your book in all publicity, and ensure that your book appears on the click through page of any online articles by or about us

  • sell your book online and in selected outlets, and at all events

  • never associate you with defamatory material, but we may cause a brouhaha

  • link to your primary website from our homepage

  • let you retain all rights, whilst being happy to help negotiate the sale of those rights on your behalf should you wish, without taking a commission

  • give all our writers an equal share of profits from eight cuts gallery press (80% split equally) and eight cuts gallery (20% split equally, with 20% to eight cuts gallery and 60% to participating artists)

  • let you set the price for your work

  • target sales, publicity, appearance and alternative format possibilities for you
    provide full monthly statements of your sales, and forward all monies to you, by Paypal, on a monthly basis

  • send out review copies of the eight cuts gallery press edition in consultation with you

we’d like you to

  • be available for media interviews within reason

  • be prepared to have a photo and press sheet drawn up for publicity

  • link to us from your website and mention us in interviews where possible and appropriate

  • agree to your book and name being used in publicity material for eight cuts gallery events

  • agree to the title and cover of your book appearing on eight cuts gallery press merchandise

  • agree to be open to suggestions of possible alternative formats for your book

  • let us quote up to 200 words from your work for publicity purposes

  • let us purchase other formats of your work at wholesale price in order to send them for review, to display them at fairs, and to sell at our events at a price to be agreed with you (and we’d like to take 20% of the profits on non eight cuts gallery press editions)

Here's a peek at those first two books. Click the title to read the opening chapter.

The Dead Beat by Cody James (whom you may know as Daisy Anne Gree)

It’s 1997, and the comet of the century is due some time about now, on its 3000 year roundtrip.

“Man, fucking Emeryville,” Lincoln said, pausing in his stride to hock phlegm onto the sidewalk.”
And so, for want of anything better to do, Adam and his meth addict friends end up in San Francisco, wondering where their place in the addict hierarchy might be, why no one has written a good book in over a decade, and what the fuck the comet might mean, when nothing on earth means anything.

And in a zip of light and a snort of meth the comet is gone, taking with it this last snapshot of earth for 3000 years, leaving Adam to wonder if it meant anything at all, or whether it was maybe just a bit cool that the sky looked different. Just for once. For the last time in his life.

Charcoal by Oli Johns

“Apparently there are three popular ways to kill yourself in Hong Kong.
Throw yourself off a building.

Hang yourself.

Burn charcoal in a sealed room.”

Oli can’t stop reading Deleuze, only it doesn’t seem to make any sense. And he can’t stop thinking about suicide. And Camus. And that sort of makes sense. But only sort of. And then he meets a seventeen year-old girl on the internet and they meet regularly for mindless sex. Only it’s not enough to stop the anxiety. And the obsession with suicide, although he knows he’ll never kill himself. And then there was that Korean model, the one who killed herself in Paris. And that writer, the one he met online. The one who said she’d tried to kill herself three times. The one who wrote that book…


  1. You're brave Dan! I sure want to know where this is going, and I'm cheering for your success.

    All the best luck with this new venture! :D

  2. Exciting times, Dan! Very best wishes for this - it sounds great.

    Do you think it's possible that some of the literary awards might insist on an ISBN before they accept that a book's been "really" published?

  3. Wow. That is HUGE. Congrats to you. I hope it all goes well for you.

  4. Thank you!

    Shayne, I've checked fairly closely and the ones I'm thinking of don't mention it - you are right, though, I imagine they WILL (and that the reason they haven't is because it hasn't occurred to them) - the totally unclear position on what "published" means is exactly what I was getting at in last month's post

    You can bet your life that if I entered the books for an unpublished script competition they'd be ruled out! Part of what I'm doing is trying to point out the exculsive and (when I'm feeling feisty I use the word) protectionist stranglehold a certain way of doing things has on the mainstream - the only explicit objection is to self-published scripts, so I've taken the very best self-published scripts in the area I want to work in and given them an imprint to overcome that objection. I hope I'll be able to get up enough interest that prizes who turn the books away will have to answer the questions.

  5. Exciting Sir so that's what happened to DAG

  6. yup, she's still around and still as amazing as ever

  7. Wow, amazing news, Dan. Congratulations on this new venture! Did know you were thinking about this for some time, so good for you for taking it to the next step. :)

  8. Thank you!! Yes, been waiting for the righttime, but most of all the right way of doing it

  9. As always, the very best with this, looking forward to seeing you get some amazing stuff into the public eye.

  10. Very interesting... you are doing a great job. Thanks for the information.