Sunday, October 4, 2015

5 Questions for Pole Pole Press

"Earlier this year, I interviewed Fouad Asfour of the Johannesburg-based Pole Pole Press, about the press’ first publication, Emzana Shack Recollections, by Lungile Sojini, and what he learned as he dipped into the world of publishing and distributing books. At “close to 100 pages in 12 pt Times New Roman on A4, single spacing,” it was “not exactly a short story,” but something about its “peculiar style” got a hold of Asfour. He wanted readers to encounter the writing as is, rather than have it shaped by teams of editors. What followed was an entertaining email conversation about his “experiment” to “show that it’s possible to make publishing more broadly available”; the “dictatorship” of paper production companies that “molest” people “with the whiteness of [their] oh so clean bonded paper, ignoring requests for recycled or unbleached paper”; and why the low readership in South Africa is more attributable to the fact that the “current book market clearly does not produce for the large audience…but for a small, mainly white middle class” in the country." Continue reading.