The Good Journal, a quarterly literary journal launched by Nikesh Shukla and Julia Kingsford to showcase UK BAME writers, has exceeded its £40k crowd-funding target.
The first edition of the journal will be published in April 2018 after 1,058 people pledged to support the journal, raising £46,596 in total - 116% of the £40,000 target.
"Significant" industry support was said to have come from companies including Hachette, PRH, Bonnier, Canongate and Atlantic, as well as the Booksellers Association and authors Tracy Chevalier and Paula Hawkins among others.
Launching in spring 2018, the journal will comprise essays, short stories, poems, extracts of novels and illustrations by emerging as well as established artists. Writers so far signed up to showcase work across the first four issues are Kamila Shamsie, Sanjeev Bhaskar, Emma-Lee Moss (Emmy The Great), Susan Wokoma, Carl Anka, Daniellé Dash, Niven Govinden, Sunny Singh, Bolu Babalola and Bridget Minamore.
Open submissions will start soon for unpublished writers, Shukla and Kingsford have said. They will be contacting agents and publishers about how to submit their writers in due course.
Subscriptions will also be available soon via The Good Journal website and individual issues will be available for bookshops to stock. BA members will be contacted in the new year with more details.
The journal was first announced on 22nd September, marking exactly one year since the publication of The Good Immigrant (Unbound).
Shukla said: 'I'm so grateful to each and every person, organisation and publisher who has supported the journal. It's great to have support from the industry and also a strong show of faith from readers. I'm so excited to get going. As I write this, I'm putting together plans for opening submissions, because I cannot wait to read what's out there. This is the go-code: get writing. If you're up-and-coming, already established, or have never been published before, this journal is for you. Get writing. Go. Go. Go. And readers, see you in 2018. This journal is for you too."
Once costs of the journal have been covered, including paying contributors, any funds raised will go towards The Good Literary Agency, a social enterprise literary agency for under-represented writers that Shukla and Kingsford are currently applying for funding to launch next year.
According to Shukla and Kingsford, The Good Literary Agency came out of conversations with publishers and agents that "essentially identified a pipeline problem for writers from under-represented backgrounds contributing to the low levels of representation in UK publishing".
Kingsford said: “It’s been really heartening to see the groundswell of support for the journal, both from the industry and the generous companies and individuals that have come on board as patrons but also from the sheer quantity of individuals who have simply signed up for a subscription because they want to be able to read the best British writers of colour out there, handily delivered to their door or inbox every quarter. I, like so many of the subscribers who’ve been in touch and cheerlead throughout the crowdfunding for us, can’t wait to see the first issue.”