The Northern Fiction Alliance (NFA) has devised an eight-point plan to “reshape and redefine the current literary landscape”.
The cohort of publishers based in the north of England, spearheaded by Manchester-centred Comma Press, has devised the plan in a bid to bring about “real and long-lasting change”. It includes urging major publishing houses to set up offices outside London to increase regional diversity in the sector; signing up to the Publishers Association’s Spare Room Project, which offers those undertaking work experience in the capital a place to stay; and committing to paying interns the Real Living Wage.
NFA is also encouraging major houses to commit to publishing more regional writers and for large publishers’ staff to volunteer to speak at industry events outside the capital.
The group, which alongside Comma Press includes Peepal Tree Press in Leeds, Dead Ink Books in Liverpool and And Other Stories in Sheffield, said: “If our industry is, as it claims, committed to tackling inclusivity then we need to start diversifying our workforces and, perhaps more importantly, dispersing across the UK in order to better engage with and embolden a new generation of writers, readers and aspiring publishers.”