There is a fascinating guest blog over on Irish Publishing News which again touches on the burning question of books and literature in Ireland. In February this year Julian Gough, the Irish novelist, took a swipe at modern Irish authors for being fixated with the past, and in particular with themes and settings from 1950's Ireland. We covered some of that debate in this article; Gough and The State of Irish Publishing.
Eoin Purcell ran a poll on Irish Publishing News recently, asking the question; Is Irish Publishing Provincial? The broad concensus of the poll suggested many people agreed that publishers were quite provincial in Ireland. In today's guest blog on Irish Publishing News, Jean Harrington, Managing Director at Maverick House Publishers, an Irish-based publisher, adds considerable insight and perspective to the debate. Harrington notes that Ireland has a similar population to Manchester, England, and she makes the following observation based on her experience of running a publishing house with an international list of books and projects commissioned from various territories throughout the world.
"It is my experience that it is the Irish reader who is provincial, and that is why Irish publishing is mainly provincial. Of all the books that Maverick House has published, it is only ones of ‘Irish interest’ that sell well in Ireland. Non-fiction books by international authors on international subjects don’t do the same figures. On the other hand, books of many different topics by different authors sell in large numbers in Britain."
You can read all of her post here.