Last weekend Influx Press had the pleasure of being a part of the second London Radical Bookfair, this time working in tandem with the Alternative Press Fair at the much bigger venue of the Bishopsgate Institute (last year’s venue, Conway Hall, became so packed it was almost impossible to move – a good sign).To us this seemed like a perfect pairing – combining the more overtly political aspect of the radical bookfair and the more ‘creative’ side of Alternative Press is an obvious choice, the crowd of people who attend these two normally separate events having a heavy amount of overlap.
For Influx Press it was especially perfect, as really we could have been on either floor, the work we publish (hopefully) being ‘creative’ rather than academic, but with a genuine interest in modern social problems and attempting to address those problems through fiction, poetry and creative non-fiction. Also we know lots of lefties and crusties with poetic aspirations.
There appears to be a really positive upsurge in independent publishing right now, with small presses, journals and magazine springing up all over the place, exploring and addressing issues and ideas left largely untouched by the work of the big publishers. It’s an exciting time to be doing what we’re doing, and we’re very happy to be part of this loose network of publishers and writers who actually support each other.
We are very grateful for all the people who attended and bought our books, as well as the sterling efforts of Nik at Housmans who put the whole thing together. These events are crucial for small outfits like ourselves, a great way to meet likeminded folk, check out all the exciting projects that others have been working on, make people aware of who we are and what we do, and to get us out of the office away from our laptops actually speaking face to face with people. We’d even go so far as to say it was fun.
On a personal note, it was great to see our friends and allies like Lisa at PROWL, Nick at Annexe, Jon from Active Distribution, the guys at the brilliant Zero Books, Kitty at Red Pepper Magazine, Canterbury poet Mark Beechill, Verso, Housmans…the list goes on and on.
Here’s to next year!