Twelve Independent Publishers Every Londoner Should Know

It’s a yr since London’s favorite writer, Penguin, was purchased out by the Bertelsmann conglomerate and merged with Random House.

Headlines and blogs slog it out each week over whether or not books are lifeless but, however London’s small publishers depart us in little question concerning the energy of print.

Here are a few of our favourites, together with at the least one beneficial guide that encapsulates what’s nice about that writer — a superb place for curious readers to start out.

acquiredInflux Press

Founded in 2011 by a few old fashioned associates from Kent, now Hackney-dwellers, Influx Press publishes books obsessive about locations. Its books are all ‘website-particular’ — an anthology for Hackney, poems from London bus routes and the Docklands, psychedelic journeys on the marshes, brief tales from withered seaside cities, essays on Birmingham, Canvey Island and ghost estates in Ireland all function on its record. Pages of Hackney might be the most effective place to seek out Influx books in E8. Further afield, get to know the publishers by studying Connecting Nothing with Something. Take this little guide of tales out to the Kent coast this summer time and uncover new angles on the backyard of England.


Ditto is a small press in Hackney specialising in vibrant risograph-printed artwork books, based by Ben Freeman and Lynsey Atkin in 2009. If you don’t know the place to start out, Pig’s Disco by Stuart Griffith is a blazing photograph account of life as a soldier stationed in Northern Ireland within the early 90s. Though the topic is chaotic, the design and edit of the writing and images give a transparent image. Head to A Benyon Road to seek out Ditto titles and see the newest exhibition.

No Brow


Since 2008, No Brow has revealed the perfect graphic artwork and illustration it might discover. The choc-a-bloc store on Great Eastern Street exhibits how profitable its ambitions have turn out to be. Not positive the place to start out? Pick up the journal – the newest, Issue N (£15), showcases work by forty five artists, all reflecting on how one can present quietness or silence in illustration.

Strange Attractor

Mark Pilkington’s Strange Attractor Press began out by operating occasions and lectures on ignored, esoteric and ‘unpopular’ tradition. Three years in, Pilkington started to publish the Strange Attractor Journal, and has since produced a big catalogue of books and CDs masking the occult, psychedelic experiences and forgotten treasures. Bookart Bookshop on Pitfield Street or Broadway Books close to London Fields are each good stockists. Look for Journal Four (the newest) to learn articles on typical Strange Attractor-sort curiosities: Chinese poisoning cults, Dali’s Atlantis, and the resurgence of Pan in Crouch End.

Visual Editions

Visual Editions was based 4 years in the past by buddies Anna Gerber and Britt Iveson. Cartography nerds may already know them from their 2013 work, Where You Are — a field of maps and tales by sixteen authors, together with Tao Lin, Geoff Dyer and Sheila Heti (take a look at its website now if the idea captures your creativeness). The writer additionally produced an excellent version of the already tricksy Tristram Shandy. For extra examples of lovely typography and e-book design by VE, head to Foyles on the Charing Cross Road.


From a small store on Lamb’s Conduit Street, Nicola Beauman has revived and revealed out-of-print books since 1999 at her publishing home, Persephone. Most of the authors are ladies, a lot of the titles written earlier than 1960, and its largest hit was Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day — shortly picked up for the movie adaptation after Persephone revealed it. No higher place to browse the books than the publishing home itself. Beauman recommends Little Boy Lost by Marghanita Laski in the event you haven’t learn any Persephone titles earlier than, a literary thriller set in publish-conflict France.

Notting Hill Editions


A writer that produces lovely slim hardback editions of essays, Notting Hill Editions was established in 2008. The first guide from the home was revealed three years later. Head to the West End to seek out a wide selection of NHE books — Waterstones on Gower Street and Piccadilly, and Daunt in Marylebone are the most effective place to browse. If the final essay you loved was George Orwell’s Why I Write, decide up Deborah Levy’s Things I Don’t Want to Know for a contemporary tackle the identical matter.

Black Dog Publishing

For lovely artwork books on design, trend and structure, head to WORK Gallery and PaperWORK bookshop on Acton Street. It’s the primary stockist in London for Black Dog Publishing. If you’re unsure the place to start out, Black Dog’s guides to London make pretty presents — you might additionally skim by way of the brand new photograph ebook Made By Hand, that profiles a variety of professional ‘makers’, from bladesmiths to stationers. The writer has books concerning the work of Stanley Kubrick and Douglas Coupland arising this summer time — control Black Dog’s Twitter feed (@BDPublishing) for information of guide launches and exhibitions.

CB Editions

Charles Boyle’s CB Editions has been recognised by a number of literary awards, together with the Forward Prize and the Saboteur awards (most lately). It has completed so with out the assistance of the Arts Council. Its books are simply recognisable by their parcel-paper-brown covers, splashed with sections or shapes in brilliant colors. Short story devotees ought to seek out May Lan-Tan’s Things to Make and Break; you can additionally attempt Agota Kristof’s novella The Notebook, which Eimear McBride reviewed favourably within the TLS. Foyles on Charing Cross Road has the perfect choice for searching.


Eyewear is a comparatively younger London press, up and operating for simply two years, however in that point it has revealed many poetry collections. Simple vibrant graphics illustrate the covers; the tutorial Dr Todd Swift picks the poets. Marion McCready’s Tree Language (out final April) has already gained loads of reward, and Eyewear may also publish a e-book of SJ Fowler’s poetry later this yr. Head to the London Review Bookshop to browse its titles.

Redstone Press

Redstone Press, run by Julian Rothenstein, has been going since 1987 — simply the longest-operating enterprise on this function. You may need already seen the sunshine-hearted Art Rules!, Surrealist Games or Psychogames, however the cult product is the Redstone diary, now in its twenty eighth yr. Next yr the theme is ‘the artwork of simplicity’, and among the many typical pages of recent paintings, the diary additionally consists of Patti Smith’s lettuce soup recipe (on sale on B June).

mountPenned within the Margins

Like Strange Attractor, Penned in the Margins began by operating occasions and performances earlier than it started to publish poetry and experimental prose in 2006. Now it often publishes main younger names in poetry corresponding to Ross Sutherland and Claire Trevien. Adventures In Form is its bestseller — a should for anybody inquisitive about how texts and Twitter updates affected poetry. Its ninety poems experiment with conventional strategies akin to collage, in addition to enjoying with new poetic types. Visit Rough Trade East or close by Brick Lane Books to see what’s in inventory.

Having compiled this record, east London appears to be a specific hotspot for publishing expertise, from Penned within the Margins within the Toynbee Studios proper up the A10 to Stoke Newington the place Ditto Press operates. But publishing is natural to all of the boroughs. Who’s your favorite indie writer in London?

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