How we came to publish this one
We’re now only considering short story and flash fiction collections or children’s books by authors we already know. We have published other stories by Paul in our anthologies so when he approached us to have his work published we were pleased to do so.
This was entirely Paul’s idea. It is quite apt. He pushes though the veneer where everything seems to be fine to show us the reality of life. But it’s not just a veneer that’s cracked. It’s a whole weight-bearing wall.
The picture of the cracked wall reinforces the physical metaphor. We do allow our writers quite a lot of input into the cover design but there are certain things that we know about that authors on the whole don’t. However, discussions in this case were more about colour combinations than other more controversial matters. We found something in the end that worked commercially and went with the aesthetics of the work.
Some notes about style
Many of the stories - but not all - are told in a first person narrative, each seven to ten pages long. They are all grounded in the sometimes disturbing reality of everyday life. They’re not horror stories and they tend towards the grey rather than the black. Yet there are glimmers of hope in several of the endings. Paul’s engaging style, which nods towards the literary, carries the reader through the murkier material.
Who we think the reader is
These aren’t an easy read. They’re not stories for escapism except that maybe if you think your life’s not so good you may find it promising compared with some of the ones portrayed here. No doubt the strong writing will engage the more critical reader.
This book is already in the black though we have yet to provide copies to the British Library and the Legal Deposit libraries. Paul had been very proactive in promoting his book. A radio interview led to a spike in sales.
Reviews welcome, as always.
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