Latest newsletter

Sorry to keep you waiting so long for a newsletter. I've missed writing them. It's good to be back.
I’ll explain my long absence towards the bottom of the page. But first, and more importantly: We have news. So much news. About our wonderful writers. 
First, in the long interim since I last wrote to you, Paul Stanbridge went and won a prize. He won the Republic of Consciousness best first book award. It was a wonderful thing. Here’s a write-up. And here's a photo:
That's Paul on the left. It was an honour to be there with him. And so good to see Forbidden Line getting more of the recognition it deserves. 
Paul also got a longlisting for the Desmond Elliott Prize. We’re hoping this is just the start, and that there'll be lots more prize-listings to come. (And in the meantime, we’ve still got some limited editions of his beautiful mind-bending masterpiece in our store, so snap them up…) 
Talking of starts, I hardly know where to begin when it comes to Preti Taneja. She’s doing so much exciting stuff. Some of it I can’t even reveal yet. I guess the first thing to say is: ohgodholycrapamolybutwethatareyoungisonehellofabook.
It’s got everything. It’s about everything. It’s a torrent of words, a rush of astonishing language, a dazzling brilliant glowing thing. It’s a story you’ll sometimes recognise - but told in a way that will completely destabilise you. It’s about India. It’s about power. It’s about abuse and nationalism and corruption. So it’s kind of also about that Mango Mussolini who’s currently destroying America and all the horrible things that are happening here in the UK too. Or at least, you’ll find it both alien and familiar. Extraordinary and all too relevant to your own life. It’s also beautiful. Preti has created something wonderful. 
So it’s not all that surprising - but no less lovely -  that people out in the big world are starting to get excited about Preti and this novel too. She’s been picked as one of the Hay 30 list of "young novelists, scientists, philosophers, performers and activists who are astonishing and inspiring", for instance. She’ll be at the festival on 3 June. (So will we. And our dog. Look out for us if you’re there.) 
As we mentioned in our stop-gap email the other day, Preti will also be appearing at the Greenwich Literary Festival on 27 May.  (We’ve got all sorts going on there  - so please check over the programme. And please book and come and say hello. Any bookings we get early on are a tremendous boost.)
And she’s on Start The Week on Radio 4 on 22 May. That’s right. She is. 
Meanwhile, while you’re getting in early, I highly recommend getting your limited edition copy of We That Are Young ordered, like, right now. In fact, as a very clever man once advised people about A Girl Is A Half-formed Thing, buy three. Buy one to read. One to give to a friend when you discover how important it is. And one to keep forever in pristine condition so that your grandchildren think of you fondly…  in spite of… all the things you went and did…
And hey! While you’re doing that, do exactly the same thing with Gonzalo C. Garcia’s We Are The End. Buy three copies. Because this too has everything. I have sometimes worried that the fact that Gonzalo can play on my emotions like Jimi Hendrix plays on a Stratocaster says something about me and my susceptibility to stories about guys who would rather spend their days under a desk rather than face the world. But everyone else I’ve shown it to loves it just as much as me. It’s sweet and it’s bitter and it’s so funny and it’s all about not quite being able to make it… It made me cry laughing. And then just cry. 
While you’re waiting for that unique experience, you might enjoy this writing lesson from Gonzalo.
And look, I know I’ve already asked you to buy six books, but since you’re going so crazy, why not make it nine? Tell your accountant it’s an investment. Heck, buy some copies for your accountant. And if you don’t have an accountant, buy some to celebrate not having an accountant. But don’t, whatever you do, miss out on our November release, which we’ve just put up on our store. This is Tinderbox by Megan Dunn and my heart is actually bursting with all the talent we’ve got on our roster.
Look! Look! Our first non-fiction title. Comes in limited edition cream. (And there's a  fire red paperback version in the store too.)
Here’s what some other people say about Megan:
“Megan Dunn’s writing is utterly modern, sharp, unsentimental and beautiful; she tells a gripping story laced with humour and pathos. She is a young writer to watch.” 
(Michele Roberts) 
“Megan Dunn is one of those rare young beings, a young writer of great talent. She possesses an even rarer combination of assets – a highly original voice, great subject matter, enormous insight and serious literary ambition.  Plus, she’s funny.  Her work leaps off the page and makes the reader want more.” 
(Kate Pullinger) 
And here’s what we say in the book’s new Advance Information sheet.
Megan Dunn was in a hole. Her attempt to write a fictional tribute to Fahrenheit 451 wasn't going well. Borders, the bookseller she worked, for was going bust. Her marriage was failing. Her prospects were narrowing. The world wasn’t quite against her – but it wasn’t exactly helping either. 
Riffing on Ray Bradbury's classic novel about the end of reading, Tinderbox is one of the most interesting books in decades about literary culture and its place in the world. More than that, it's about how every one of us fits into that bigger picture – and the struggle to make sense of life in the twenty-first century.
Ironically enough for a book about failures in art, Tinderbox itself is a fantastic achievement; a wonderfully crafted and beautifully written work of non-fiction that is by turns brilliantly funny and achingly sad. … It will help ensure that you will never ever again be rude to anyone working in retail.
Tinderbox is one of the most successful books about failure you will ever read. 
It’s available to pre-order now.
I’ve mainly been off duty on newsletters (and more - sorry if you’re waiting on an email/Singles/anything else) because I’ve been wading through sewers. Metaphorically, at least. 
I’ve been writing about the people who brought us Brexit and Trump, attacks on experts and truth and all that is right and good in the world. It’s been quite a journey. And quite an intense bit of writing. And  weird. But I’m quite pleased with the result. 
It has a few rough edges. But I also hope plenty of important things to say. As well as plenty of jokes. Some of it will shock and horrify you - it sometimes terrified me when I was researching it. But there’s some kind of hope in there too. At least, by knowing what we’re up against, we’ll better be able to fight it. Anyway, here it is
Here’s the  blurb:
Something has gone wrong. We're living in an age of celebratory racism, extreme inequality, uncertainty and fear. We're governed by people who claim to be populist but who seem to hate everyone. There are idiots at the wheel and we're heading for a cliff in a big red bus and no one knows how to save us.
Enemies Of The People reveals who has taken us to this dizzying precipice. It provides the actual, non-alternative facts about Donald Trump, Nigel Farage, Vladimir Putin and their charming friends - and also explains where they got their crazy ideas. Why did people turn so mean? How did so-called social networks like Facebook become so very anti-social? Why did anyone think it would be a good idea to privatise railways? Just how much should we fear the robots? Why is no one doing anything about Global Warming? Why is no one doing anything about Boris Johnson either?  
This book explains all those vital questions and more. 
Remember, though – they say history is written by the victors and fortunately, many of those currently winning can’t seem to write more than 140 characters at a time. This gives us the golden opportunity to set the record straight and snatch back the narrative. But if we’ve any chance of victory, we first need to know our enemy.
It’s available in our store now. I'm available for interviews, features, anything at all. I hope that as well as being occasionally silly this book is important. It could even make a difference - but it's going to need a really big push. We’ll be using the proceeds from any web site orders to subsidise more hardcore literary Galley Beggar fiction. 
And! Excitingly, our friends at the  Big Green Bookshop are putting on a night about the book on 14 June. They’ve invited Piers Morgan. He’s in the book. So it should be quite interesting. And even if he doesn’t show, we’ll have a good discussion. About all the things that have gone wrong in the world. Yay!
At the very least, this is a great way of supporting a fantastic shop. And a way to stick it to The Man. Because this book probably has plenty of flaws - but not sticking it to the people who have done so much to spoil our lives is not among them. You need to know about Milton Friedman and why he’s had such an impact on our world. You need to be able to tell people. You need to be able to understand the people who quote him and follow his ideas. You need to be… I’m going on again. I’ll do it even more on the night. But please come. I’d love to see you. 7-9pm. Wood Green. 14 June. Link here.
Long term readers of this letter may also be pleased to learn that Jeff Bezos also features in Enemies Of The People. Sadly, in that book I had a very strict policy of sticking to hard truth and known facts. Which is a shame, because I also have some great unknown facts about Jeff Bezos… You might even call them alternate facts. I'll probably share those in the near future. For now, the surprising observation I have to make is that Jeff Bezosis one of the most likeable and intelligent of the 50 people in my book. Okay he's been trying to destroy publishing and all competition for years, feasting on corpses, the blood of dead authors cascading down his chin and destroying J-Crew shirt after J-Crew shirt... And doing it all, apparently, so he can fund his own private space exploration programme. But at least he's got a brain and a plan. At least he isn't Boris Johnson. 



 As usual, I'm also going to use the end of the newsletter for a few more adverts, where you can safely ignore them, or kindly indulge me, depending on your fancy:

Firstly, please be our friend! Become a Galley Buddy. It's a good deal for us, and a great deal for you. Our subscription service helps us ensure that we can support our writers and takes away some of the fear of pushing against literary boundaries. It also helps you ensure you get beautiful limited edition, collectible books by fine writers on tap.


Secondly, please join The Singles Club so we can pay writers to write. Here's the blurb:

We have a fantastic subscription system set up for our Singles Club so that you now only have to make one payment to get hold of 12 stories. But how to go through the ins and outs of paypal payment systems without boring the dirtbox off you, I don't know. Probably the best thing to do is to head over to the relevant page on our site, where I've tried to give a brief, but to the point explanation, and to take it from there. The important things to know are that:

(1) Subscribing saves you the trouble of going to the site every month to get your fix of superb ebook literature – we'll just email you the files every month.

(2) Subscribing (so long as enough people do it) will enable us to start giving our authors money up front on for each story. Yes! We are going to pay people to write short stories. It's like the golden days of the 1920s. Only they'll be in electronic book format instead of Strand magazine… Anyway! You get the idea. This is a mighty fine way to keep authors doing what they do best – entertaining you.

(3) It costs £12 a year, or £1 a month, or less than a meal in Pizza Express. (Unless you have a voucher.)

Thirdly, donate to Galley Beggar Press and earn yet more of our gratitude, click here.

Fourthly, Elly and me wrote a book called Literary London. A lot of people have said very nice things about it, and it's available in our store.

Fifthly:  Obviously I've been listening to the new Slowdive album non-stop, on repeat, and it's been making me very happy.
Sixthly: Just about managed to finish this letter without mentioning the election horrors. France showed that a pro-Europe non-fascist can still win, at least. I don't hold up much hope for June. But after that we can start rebuilding. 

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