The official weblog of the little-poetry-press-that-could, Plan B Press. Specializing in chapbooks, we have published of over 40 books from authors both local and international.

Monday, June 22, 2009

News about Salt Publishing (UK)

The UK's largest independent poetry press, Salt Publishing, has staved off bankruptcy after appealing for help from its fans. Ten years old and the home of poets including the rising UK star Luke Kennard and award-winning Australian poet John Tranter, Salt last month found itself on the edge of a financial precipice. The effects of the recession - spring sales were down nearly 80% on the previous year - coupled with the end of its Arts Council funding, an enormous tax bill and a demand for payment from a major creditor meant it had a £55,000 budget deficit. "It was absolutely the end," says director Chris Hamilton-Emery. About to lose his home - Salt is a family business - he began cancelling the books Salt had lined up, but then he came up with a possible solution.

The Just One Book campaign, encouraging fans to buy one of Salt's 300-plus titles, started with a single post on Facebook, and quickly went viral, with Twitter, Facebook and hundreds of blogs all picking up on it. The orders started to rush in, and as of this week, Hamilton-Emery says the worst is - hopefully - past. "We've had more than 1,400 direct orders, worth £32,000, over the last four weeks, from Kazakhstan to South America. It's quite extraordinary, and very humbling."

I wanted to mention that two of the poets we have published have also been published by Salt. Anne Blonstein and James Thomas Stevens. I hope for the best for Salt.

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