Kit de Waal's Common People hits crowd-funding target

Kit de Waal's Common People hits crowd-funding target

Kit de Waal's anthology Common People, providing a platform for new working class writers, is now fully crowd-funded for publication with Unbound. 

Funding for the project surpassed its target on Wednesday (21st February) with the help of 754 backers. De Waal revealed she was "absolutely delighted" with the news.

A crowd-funding campaign for the collection launched with Unbound in December last year following concerns that working class voices are "increasingly absent" from book shelves and print news coverage. 

The anthology is set to include 16 well-known working class writers alongside the same number of as-yet-unpublished writers across the UK.

Contributions could include essays, poems or pieces of personal memoir. Established writers on the roster so far include: Damian Barr; Malorie Blackman OBE; Lisa Blower; Jill Dawson; Louise Doughty; Stuart Maconie; Chris McCrudden; Lisa McInerney; Paul McVeigh; Daljit Nagra; Dr Dave O’Brien; Cathy Rentzenbrink; Anita Sethi; Adelle Stripe; Tony Walsh and Alex Wheatle. 

The new writers are now being selected by regional writing development agencies including New Writing North and Writing West Midlands, who will be supporting and mentoring them in the run-up to publication.

De Waal, debut author behind My Name is Leon, told The Bookseller: "I’m absolutely delighted that Common People has hit its target so quickly. We are actually at 101%. The tremendous support we’ve had from people across the country has been humbling and inspiring.  

"There’s a long way to go but Common People is a step on the road to change. On behalf of all the authors involved and Unbound Publishing, I’d like to thank everyone for their tweets, likes, good wishes and pledges. We will do you proud."

Rachael Kerr, Unbound's editor at large, who will work on the anthology with the author, revealed the team was "so thrilled to get the book funded".

She said: "The response to Kit’s call has been fantastic and absolutely proves the need for working class voices to be heard loud and clear. Kit’s energy and dedication to the cause are awe-inspiring and I can’t wait to get the book out there."