Inside the Australian and New Zealand book industry

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Introducing Affirm Press

Affirm Press is an optimistic, owner-operated Australian publisher with a list that includes Australian and international nonfiction, fiction and children’s titles. Publisher Martin Hughes spoke to Think Australian:

What makes your press unique?

  • It’s owner operated—one partner publishes, one sells, and they frequently swap hats.
  • We’re the most optimistic publisher in Australia (based on equal parts strategy, idealism and naiveté).
  • We’re the fastest growing publisher in Australia.
  • We don’t always know what we’re doing but we’re having fun doing it.

How many books do you publish each year—and what kinds of books?

Approximately 60 books across the trade. Mostly nonfiction (memoirs, sport, humour, big ideas), a select list of Australian fiction, and a brilliant new kids list from board books up to YA (when we find a brilliant YA book we want to launch with).

Have you sold international rights to your books?

Yes and it’s growing rapidly. Rights are sold through Linda Kaplan of the Defiore Agency in New York and her network of sub-agents.

Which titles have been most successful overseas?

Decay Theory, which we only acquired in June and won’t be published until next year, has already sold into eight territories.

Which title or author on your list do you believe deserves bigger recognition overseas?

We’re very proud of the ‘Olive Black’ series for middle-grade readers by Alex Miles (we recently commissioned books five and six).

Have you acquired the rights to publish any international titles in Australia?

Yes, frequently. We are focusing on young readers and nonfiction for adults, and funny really floats our boat.

What will you publish next (that may appeal to international publishers)?

An instant picture book classic by Australian legend Alison Lester—The Very Noisy Baby will work in any market.

 

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