Tramp Press is the new indie publisher on the block in Ireland, set up by ex-Lilliput editor Sarah Davis-Goff (pictured right) and her business partner Lisa Coen (pictured left),
Tramp is “only interested in publishing brilliant fiction” and will specialise in Irish fiction.
Its first title is Flight (3rd April), a début novel about a Zimbabwean woman who moves to Ireland to study, and soon becomes a carer to an elderly couple who suffer from mental illness.
“So many people in Ireland have ageing parents, and more and more are asking carers to live in,” Davis-Goff said. “It’s a universal experience, but it’s something that is rarely talked about, and that’s a shame.”
Tramp Press’ second title is a collection of short stories that includes “big-name authors from Ireland”, said Davis-Goff, “[but] we’re worried that if we announce too many details too soon, some of the interest will be taken away from our first novel, so we’re being cagey.”
Another project Tramp Press is launching will begin this autumn, when it will publish the first in a series of “rescued Irish classics”. Davis-Goff was inspired by Vintage’s successful reissue of John Williams’ Stoner, and Tramp’s first title in the series is Charlotte Riddell’s 1880-published A Struggle for Fame, the story of a young Irish woman who leaves Ireland to try and make it as an author in London—a plot thought to be based on Riddell’s own life. A contemporary academic will introduce each book in the series.
“[A Struggle for Fame] is so fantastic and it’s been completely lost in the public’s memory, which is a real shame,” Davis-Goff said. “It was a bestseller at the time, and it has got to have one of the first Irish sex scenes—it’s very awkward, but it’s wonderfully told.” Tramp Press will be “uncompromising” in its mission to publish “hair-raising fiction”, and Davis-Goff hopes the publisher will grow to be an iconic Irish brand.
Davis-Goff was previously an editor at the Lilliput Press, and was one of the first readers of Donal Ryan’s The Thing About December, his first submission before The Spinning Heart was taken on. Coen also worked at Lilliput, before working as a publishing executive at Accounts Ireland Publishing.