The Alternative Book Fair London

13th March 2024 6:30pm to 16th March 2024 5:00pm, Islington Central Library

The inaugural Alternative Book Fair, London is a week of publishing and author events to bring the world of publishing and literature to a wider audience. Taking place in the grand, recently refurbished Islington Central Library, the Alternative Bookfair is an initiative developed by Islington Libraries and Hackney-based publisher, Indie Novella.

All events are completely free and designed to connect big name, established and up and coming authors with readers and aspiring writers of all different backgrounds, leaving no one excluded.  There will be a series of headline events, with award winning crime writer Ajay Chowdhury speaking about his Kamil Rahman series and his new book The Spy; authors Chloe AshbyKate Maxwell, and Rose Diell discussing the themes of womanhood and motherhood in their writing; Marieke Bigg and Phoebe McIntosh discussing how writing can boldly tackle societal issues; and panels including Mira MarcinówMusih Tedji Xaviere, YA author Emma Brand, graphic novelist Sarah Airriess and more. To make the event possible, each author and panellist has waived their fee as part of the Alternative Book Fair’s commitment to bring the world of publishing to more people in a way that everyone can access and promote writing at a grassroots level.

The Book Fair seeks to make both reading and publishing more accessible to book lovers and writers of all backgrounds, especially underrepresented readers and writers, and bring together people from all socio-economic backgrounds. The aim is to demonstrate that there should be no barriers to publishing and writing, and that great literature is for everyone.

The Alternative Book Fair also hosts The Indie Press Fair on Saturday 16 March, in collaboration with the newly formed Indie Press Network, with a series of exhibitions and bookstalls by some of the most influential independent publishers in UK publishing, including multi award winning publisher Dead Ink Books, Jacaranda Books, Weather Glass Books, the Republic of Consciousness Prize, Heloise Press, Renard Press, Indie Novella and many more.

The Fair has been curated by Islington Libraries and Indie Novella – Islington Libraries runs events and workshops promoting reading and literature across one of the most socioeconomic diverse boroughs in London. Indie Novella founded the Diversity in Publishing Partnership in 2023 to create a new breed of writing course which provides industry insight from established literary agencies such as David Godwin Associates and Watson, Little, all completely for free.

The Alternative Book Fair is also being supported by an array of key partners including Watson, Little Literary Agency who have a long history of representing some of the world’s leading and most exciting authors and have been providing pro-bono support and content to the Indie Novella writing course, as well as setting up the Watson Little x Indie Novella Prize, a writing prize devoted to celebrating emerging voices from underrepresented communities. 


Islington Central Library

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