Today on my blog, I welcome one of the big guns in North-east publishing, the unfortunately named Ed BykerBooks. Ed’s here to talk about one of the best publishing houses in the UK today.
Ed, Byker Books have just released Volume 6 of Radgepacket, how do you manage to get so many talented writers on board?
A lot of hard work initially when we were setting up and no-one believed we were serious but since then, as the series has grown in credibility and super-coolness we find we’re having to reject an awful lot of stories. We don’t use blackmail or threats of violence to get stories, that’s just a rumour…
Where did the idea of Radgepacket come from initially?
Reading the sadly defunct ‘Bullet’ magazine and stuff like ‘Acid House’ from Irvine Welsh convinced us that there was a need for proper council estate short fiction. The short story has had something of a renaissance in recent years and we hope that we helped with that.
Tell us a little bit about Byker Books’ journey please.
We started as a little group of writers moaning that no-one would publish us despite the fact we were blatantly better than everyone else in the world (like you do). This progressed to ‘fuck it – we’ll just publish our own stuff, how hard can it be…’ (proper hard as it happens!) and now we’re causing other writers to moan that we won’t publish them despite them being blatantly better than everyone else in the world…
If someone would like to submit to you, what do they need to do?
Read the submissions page on our website and follow it to the letter – it’s not difficult – otherwise they get filed in the bin! We once got a submission that started “I don’t read submission procedures…” I don’t know how it ended as I stopped reading at that point and moved onto the next one.
What’s on the horizon next?
A Kindle novella series from some very good novelists that we’ve hand-picked for their ‘radgeness’ and their pedigree. A full length Kindle novel from Eileen Wharton entitled ‘Shit Happens’ that has been described as ‘making Shameless look like a middle-class romp!’ and more of Darren Sant’s ‘Longcroft Tales’ – he’s like a modern-day Charles Dickens you know…honest.
Where can people find you online?
www.bykerbooks.co.uk – Our website may go down for a day or two at the end of April – don’t worry, we’re on the case and it won’t be for long.
Do you have a favourite story that’s been featured in one of the Radgepackets?
They’re all brilliant otherwise they wouldn’t be in a Radgepacket, however, one that always sticks in my mind is ‘Where’s Your Head At?’ by Gareth Mews in Radge4 – it’s about a bloke whose head falls off! Can’t fault that kind of imagination can you?
So, who’s in the Byker Books team?
That’s more secret than who Prince Harry’s dad really is – all we’ll say is this, you wouldn’t want to meet the rest of them on a dark night and if you did you’d have buy the drinks as they’re all proper tight!
I adore straight-talking Ed. So if you’re a radgie writer and you fancy being part of this no-nonsense establishment, you know what to do!
Get your paperback copy of Radgepacket 6 here: http://amzn.to/H7e6bR