A Carnival of Voices in Independent Publishing
Based in Cardigan/Aberteifi on the west coast of Wales, Parthian is a literary publishing success story. The company was established in 1993 by Publishing Director Richard Lewis Davies to publish his first novel, Work, Sex and Rugby. Since then, Parthian has risen to become one of the most respected publishers in Wales – and one with international resonance. Our list incorporates an innovative range of new fiction, poetry and drama, from writers as varied as Deborah Kay Davies, Dai Smith, Rachel Trezise, Glen Peters, John Harrison, Stevie Davies, Cynan Jones, Tyler Keevil and Niall Griffiths.
Central to our mission is our belief in the power of a great book, and what we publish reflects a diverse and contemporary Wales that casts a keen eye on the wider world. Exciting, vibrant, surprising, relevant and original – the only thing predictable about Parthian is our quality. In recent years, our authors have garnered critical acclaim and prestigious accolades including The Dylan Thomas Prize, The Betty Trask, the Wales Book of the Year, the Orange Futures Award, The Rhys Davies Prize and The Stonewall Award.
We’re also committed to discovery, and our Bright Young Things series brings you the stars of tomorrow today. The series has included sparkling novels, short stories and travelogues by Tyler Keevil, J. P. Smythe, Susie Wild and Wil Gritten. Full details can be found by visiting www.brightyoungthings.info/. In 2012 poets Anna Lewis and Alan Kellermann joined the series with highly accomplished and exciting collections musing on everything from the ghost in a martini to startling re-imaginings of the Mabinogion, and we issued a new paperback edition of Tyler Keevil's Fireball. Jemma King joins the series in 2013, with her debut poetry collection The Shape of a Forest.
The Classics of Welsh Literature
We also publish the prestigious Library of Wales series which includes books such as Border Country, The Black Parade and Ash on a Young Man’s Sleeve. 2013 will see publication of W. H. Davies Autobiography of a Super-tramp, and James Hanley's A Kingdom, along with a bumper, two volume, short story anthology.
We have developed good translation links throughout Europe and beyond, and our books have appeared in fifteen foreign-language editions including French, Italian, Spanish, Arabic, Turkish, Danish, Turkish, Portuguese and Russian. We have recently announced our first book deal with New Star publications in China for the thriller The Colour of a Dog Running Away.
Our list also includes a growing number of titles in translation such as To Bury the Dead, Under the Dust, The Bridge Over the River, Strange Language, Martha, Jac and Shanco from Spanish, Catalan, German, Basque and Welsh. Katie Gramich's vibrant translation of Kate Roberts' Feet in Chains was launched at the Eisteddfod in 2012.
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In addition to Parthian HQ in Cardigan, there is a bustling Editorial and Marketing office at Swansea University, where we provide work experience for students interested in developing publishing skills, from taster sessions in publishing software like indesign and quark, to editorial assistant and marketing duties. Internships are conducted on an informal basis and are flexible to suit individual requirements. We also work closely with Go Wales and in 2013 hosted a placement for French marketing student Marine Lejeune, our first Spanish placee from the Leonardo Programme, Estefania Rodicio, and Viktória Bajaníková from Slovakia.
The Parthian Team
Richard Lewis Davies
Richard Lewis Davies is one of the founding partners of Parthian. It was established in 1993 to publish his first novel Work, Sex and Rugby, and has now published over two hundred titles of which 194 are still in print. Richard has been involved in the literary scene in Wales since 1990 and is the current commercial director of Parthian and the Library of Wales series.
In addition to publishing he has a parallel career as a creative writer. His novels include Tree of Crows and My Piece of Happiness, and he has also published a selection of literary essays As I Was a Boy Fishing and a critically acclaimed selection of stories Love and Other Possibilities. His work has received numerous awards, including the Rhys Davies short story competition and the John Morgan writing award. He has worked extensively in Welsh theatre and has had six plays professionally produced, the most recent of which was Supertramp, Sickert and Jack the Ripper at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival in 2011. His work for younger readers includes a series of children’s picture books available in both English and Welsh Tai and the Tremorfa Troll, developed with the illustrator Hayley Acreman. He is currently working on a stage adaptation of Mrs D’Silva’s Detective Instincts and the Shaitan of Calcutta with Tin Can Theatre of Kolcatta as part of a British Council India project with the producer Rebecca Gould.
Gillian Griffiths is one the founding partners of Parthian and is the financial director. She has worked in fine art and photography and held a number of exhibitions in Wales including Child for a Moment and Freeways, both at the Dylan Thomas Centre. Her photography and art work has appeared on a wide range of covers for Parthian including Grace, Tamar and Laszlo the Beautiful. She is working on a book of her work and completing a course in traditional woodland management techniques with the Coppice wood college in the Teifi valley.
Claire Houguez is an editor and marketing officer for Parthian and cheerily (wo)mans the Swansea office. She joined Parthian as an Editorial Assistant in 2010, helped to develop Parthian's ebook list, and has been Marketing Officer since 2011. In addition to editing and marketing, Claire is also involved in the production process. She is a graduate of Swansea Metropolitan University and Swansea University, where she received a Distinction in her Creative Writing MA. She is a regular face (and voice) at poetry events in Swansea and is working towards a PhD with a fiction collection exploring the neo-burlesque revival.
Poetry Editor Alan Kellermann was born in Wisconsin, USA and lives in Swansea. In 2001, he won the Eleanor B. North and Judson Q. Owen awards from Sigma Tau Delta, the International English Honor Society. In 2011 he completed a PhD in Poetry at Swansea University, where he has led seminars in creative writing. Published by major British and Irish journals, including New Welsh Review, Agenda and Poetry Ireland Review, Alan is already considered a 'one to watch' in British poetry. He has been described as 'a young writer of ambition and sophistication', his debut poetry collection You, Me and the Birds was published by Parthian in 2012, and his poetry also appeared in Ten of the Best (2011).
Carly is working with Parthian and other organisations to develop and promote literature in west Wales.
She is in the final year of a Creative Writing Phd, and also holds a BA in English Lit and an MA in Creative Writing. She has had a number of short stories published and placed in competitions and Parthian are publishing her first novel in 2014. She organises The Cellar Bards, a group of writers who meet monthly in Cardigan for an evening of live literature, and she is the Secretary for the annual PENfro book festival, as well as a member of the editorial board for The Lampeter Review. When she's not making stuff up she enjoys drinking gin, murdering slugs and dancing in a crazed fashion to rock music.
Nikki Griffiths has many years experience working in publishing in the areas of rights licensing, contract negotiation and a stint in international sales and has worked for Penguin Books, Random House and Bloomsbury. Nikki will be representing us at the 2013 London Book Fair and looks forward to meeting existing publishing partners from around the world, making new contacts and spreading the Parthian word. Should you wish to consider any of our books or need more information on our authors and titles please do contact Nikki at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Dai Smith is the series editor of the Library of Wales and Professor in the Cultural History of Wales at Swansea University. Having studied History at Balliol College, Oxford, and Literature at Columbia University, New York City, he was awarded a Ph.D. at Swansea University for a thesis on the South Wales Miners' Federation, which subsequently became the subject of his book, with Hywel Francis, The Fed. He has written extensively about modern Wales, including Aneurin Bevan and the World of South Wales (1993) and Wales: A Question for History (1998). The latter was an extensively revised version of the book associated with six documentary films he wrote and presented under the title Wales! Wales?
He became Editor of BBC Radio Wales in 1993 and was Head of Broadcast (English) there from 1994 until 2000 when he was appointed Pro-Vice-Chancellor at the University of Glamorgan. His critically acclaimed biography of Raymond Williams was published in 2008 as Raymond Williams: A Warrior's Tale. He is currently the chair of the Arts Council of Wales. His debut novel of stories Dream On was published in 2013.
Currently a participant in what must be the longest GO Wales placement in history (9 months and counting...), Rob is an editorial and marketing assistant at Parthian. Possessing a first-class honours in English literature from Aberystwyth University but suffering from lexical burn-out, he drifted, Gully Foyle-like, between various jobs and dreams for a year after graduating in 2012 before finally returning 'home' to the written word and beginning to work for Parthian. A voracious reader who counts Philip K. Dick, Dostoevsky, Conrad and Tolkien among his favourite authors, Rob can often be found lurking in the various bars, cinemas and concert venues across Wales. Also, despite the above picture – taken during some impromptu character acting at the launch of Dan Tyte's debut Half Plus Seven – he is neither a) associated with terrorism in any shape or form, or b) an alcoholic.
Francesca has just started her 11-weeks internship with Parthian, with the Leonardo Programme. She graduated at Bologna University in Foreign Languages and Literatures, focusing on the intercultural relationship between Italians and Germans. She has already worked as Head Copy Editor for Persiani Editore Publishing House in Bologna, and now is looking forward to this new experience here at Parthian. What she likes the most is travelling, theatre – above all musicals –, and spending time with her family.
Elena is a French student from Brest, who will be completing a twelve week placement in Parthian. She is almost at the end of a degree of Applied Modern Languages at the UBO (University of Occidental Britanny) and is here to learn about publishing and marketing and about the promotion of events. She's fond of travelling and cinema and tennis, books that focus on travel and historical romance and so on and so forth...
Natalie is currently working on marketing for Parthian’s poetry. An MA student in Creative Writing at Swansea University (never having left Swansea to study – Nan says she’d miss her too much), she hopes to do a PhD in Creative Writing in October. Outside of the Parthian office, Natalie is busy writing and was 2nd place prizewinner of the Terry Hetherington Young Writer’s Award 2013. She was commended for the Hippocrates Prize for Poetry and Medicine 2012, shortlisted for The Bridport Prize 2010-12 and the South Wales Short Story Competition 2013. Other than scribbling in notebooks, Natalie runs Howl Poetry, an open mic event in Swansea, and is Versifier-in-Residence at the Dylan Thomas Birthplace. An avid fan of drawing, running and baking elaborate cake, Natalie is seriously considering replacing men with verse and one day wants her own writing shed just like Dylan’s.
Glenda has just started her 11-week internship at Parthian. She graduated at Bologna University where she took a Master's Degree in Comparative and Post-Modern Literatures. Still unaware of what the future will bring, she is enthusiastically approaching the world of publishing, hoping to finally find her little, comfy space there. She enjoys spending long periods of time abroad, but is always keen on going back to her beloved Italy. Gossip and fashion blogs are her guilty pleasures.
The Parthian publishing programme is produced with support from of the Welsh Books Council.
The Library of Wales project is a Welsh Assembly Government and Welsh Books Council initiative.