So here we are... We've done it!
After five years of fairs and markets, Matt ArtPix and Arcane Publishing have gone and taken a permanent unit at The Customs House in West Bay, West Dorset.
We are calling it The Unit so we can keep the name if for whatever reason we need to move out into a new venue (eventually our own shop/space, hopefully in Bridport).
We set up last weekend, and it was an epic four days indeed...
But we are very happy with the space (located on the second floor of the English Heritage-managed 200 year-old building) and the place was absolutely buzzing the whole time!
To move our stock and pieces of furniture, we hired "The Beast". Needless to say we only did B&B-West Bay-B&B the whole time as going around small winding Dorset roads with an unfamiliar and pretty long rented van is not a good idea (our little Fiesta is better for that kind of malarkey)...
Our space is packed full of books, art and objects... We will keep adding to the stock and changing the display as often as we can, i.e each time we can drive down to Dorset (We will be there full-time for the whole of November and January so we are thinking about things we could do to promote the space whilst there).
Matt ArtPix will do his own blog about the unit later this week and I will link it here when it is done.
Arcane Publishing's goodies are mainly located in "the red shelves". We will be selling a small selection of new fiction, non-fiction and poetry and also carefully handpicked second-hand and collectible ones as well as comics and ephemera...
Of course, both Miss Gish's novels published by Arcane, I Am a Muse and The Book of Thoth, are on sale (at reduced prices as this is our own retail outlet!) - and we are promoting her current work-in-progress, the Dorset-based The Right Place, with posters and flyers around the unit.
We are delighted to showcase works by independent publishers and authors, people whose work is genuinely different and exciting! You will never be bored with the books on our shelves...
Colourful panels located on the side of the shelves introduce the authors and imprints to their new audience; feel free to spend some time reading them!
We are incrediby proud to be selling Ignite Books's excellent publications: Wild Thing and The Curious Mystery of Miss Lydia Larkin and The Widow Marvell by the fabulously talented Joolz Denby; three poetry books by poet and publisher Steve Pottinger (read Miss Gish's interview with Steve about his work and Ignite Books HERE): Kissing It All, Island Songs and the brand new More Bees, Bigger Bonnets; Ignite's bestseller City Baby by Ross Lomas and Steve Pottinger; and Ignite's new author Carl Stanley's debut title, the fantastic Kiss and Make Up (Carl's mum lives in Bridport, so I hope she will visit our unit sometime!).
Our hardworking friends at Estuary Publishing have two of their titles on our shelves: Una Rose's beautiful The Tokyo Express and Robert Hallmann's atmospheric and beautifully illustrated Festival of The Gargoyles. Read Miss Gish's interview with Estuary Publishing's founder Audrey Snee HERE.
We also have copies of musician Johnny Navarro's thrilling debut novel-cum-memoir Kill Devil Delta, which comes with a free 15 track CD! Read Miss Gish's interview with Johnny HERE.
Here are some of our second-hand books, at the moment mainly fashion/beauty/glamour and classic cinema and icons. Quite a few of those books are rather rare!
Of course, we share the space with Matt ArtPix's colourful and cheeky art! (Matt also designed the cover of The Book of Thoth, I Am a Muse and Kill Devil Delta. He also typeset The Book of Thoth and KDD!).
We are on the second floor of this great 200 year-old building...
The weather was fantastic for our setting up weekend. Even after the building closed its doors at 5.30pm, the courtyard stayed open until 9pm and was very very busy with people eating and chatting.
I suppose the challenge will be to get people coming and to keep them in during the autumn and winter... Some clever thinking will be needed, maybe a few events (music and literature). We can suggest some ideas!
This is our first venture in the South West, and it will most certainly not be our last, as we intend to move as close to Bridport as possible within the next year or so. This is where we want to develop our ventures, Matt ArtPix and Arcane Publishing. We cannot wait to play with the space and develop the numerous ideas and projects we have in our heads!
So if you are in the area, please do pop in!
All pictures by Matt ArtPix.
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