Independent publishers Dead Ink and Influx are launching an imprint, called New Ruins, focused on books that "defy the conventions" of literary and genre fiction.
The imprint will make commissions and invite submissions from literary agents, with its books available to the trade alongside Dead Ink titles, represented by Impress Books.
Nathan Connolly, publishing director at Dead Ink, said: “New Ruins will bring an exciting and dynamic range of new fiction to readers, so it is important that it is produced in an exciting and dynamic way. Collaborating with Influx Press to break a few boundaries and bring something new to the industry is exactly the way it should be done.”
Influx press co-founder Gary Budden said: “I am thrilled and to be starting this new collaborative imprint. Giving a dedicated home to the kind of boundary-pushing, cross-genre work being produced in the UK has long been a dream of mine, so to be putting this into action is incredibly exciting. It demonstrates the forward thinking and versatile nature of the independent publishing sector and what we are capable of achieving.”
New Ruins will publish paperback originals that sit outside "genre labels", starting with Kylie Whitehead's Absorbed as its first publication. The novel was acquired from Imogen Pelham at Marjacq, and will be launched in May next year.
In the synopsis, the novel explores the life of "a 20-something woman in crisis who fears that her boyfriend Owen is the only interesting thing about her and he might be slipping away. But then, she physically absorbs him. He’s gone. But he’s within her, she can feel him. And, imbued with him, she starts to change the things in her life she’s unhappy with. She starts to reflect, and to take responsibility. She starts to become more than just Owen’s girlfriend."
Whitehead said: “I’m thrilled that Absorbed has found a home at New Ruins. I couldn’t be more on board with the mission of this new imprint, exploring unconventional works free of the limitations often imposed by both genre and literary fiction. And who better to do it than two of the country’s most important indie publishers! I can’t wait to see what New Ruins has in store next and know Absorbed will be in very good company.”