Saturday, 16 June 2018

Happy National Flash Fiction Day

 V. Press is very very pleased to celebrate this year's National Flash Fiction Day with editor Sarah Leavesley's  'A Flash Guide to V. Press'.

The piece was originally written for a blogpost for the National Flash Fiction Festival, which takes place at Trinity College, Bristol from July 20-22 and will feature a V. Press showcase.

 The showcase on Sunday, July 22, will feature readings from this year's V. Press titles: There's Something Macrocosmic About All of This by Santino Prinzi and Michael Loveday's flash fiction novella Three Men on the Edge.

More about the festival can be found on the festival website here.


In summer 2018, V. Press celebrates its fifth birthday. It’s a very, very delightful coincidence that it also marks the publication of our fifth fiction title!

The press was originally set up and launched at Ledbury Poetry Festival in 2013. But it only really got going in 2015, with three poetry pamphlets. In 2016, V. Press published three poetry pamphlets, a poetry collection and our first flash pamphlet. This increased to nine titles in 2017, with a similar schedule for 2018.

The move into publishing flash fiction alongside poetry was an organic one. I’d long admired Carrie Etter’s poetry and I was delighted to be able to publish her fiction pamphlet, Hometown. Our range has built up from there, with clear black and white photographic cover designs to make our fiction immediately and distinctively discernible from our poetry titles.

The compressed nature of flash sits well alongside poetry, but I also like work that mixes artforms or threads across genre boundaries. I have eclectic tastes in my own reading and writing; I think this is reflected in my choices as an editor and publisher.

One thing I look for in manuscripts is not just great individual pieces but some overall cohesion. The pamphlet in particular is perfect for sequences of poems and short fiction which combine to create a sum that’s greater than its parts.

So, Carrie Etter’s Hometown is very immediate and very engaging, with emotion-charged stories, distinctive characters and strong tensions. Jude Higgins’ very evocative and very colourful The Chemist’s House is a moving, interconnected coming-of-age flash tapestry of family love and conflict. Charlie Hill’s Walking Backwards is a touching, funny and melancholic mix of short fiction that is very human and very distinctive.

This year, Michael Loveday’s Three Men on the Edge is a very richly shaded and very unconventional novella-in-flash. This heart-felt narrative of three men living on the edge of London is also funny, scary and beautifully crafted, with poetic language and emotional precision. Meanwhile, the very human and very heart-provoking flashes in Santino Prinzi’s There's Something Macrocosmic About All of This range across hilarious, playful, profound and fierce as they pick out the big truths in everyday moments.

Ultimately, the choice of titles is subjective – and not just about the individual manuscript, but also how it fits with V. Press’s overall range. I’m pleased this includes work from open submissions windows. It’s really exciting to discover new work by new writers as well as established names!

We had a poetry submissions window open in April/May 2018, which will now be followed by a flash fiction submission window in July. But I’m also exploring the possibility of guest editors – to potentially increase the diversity and maybe even number of titles that we publish, as well as potentially allowing writer-editors based overseas to influence the work that V. Press produces.

Although we’re not yet five years old, it’s been great to see the press shortlisted in the Michael Marks Publishers’ Award 2017, as well as many of our authors picking up their own wonderful individual reviews, awards and accolades.

More information and sample flashes/poems can be found on our website and please do follow us on twitter at @vpresspoetry. I’m also very very much looking forward to meeting writers and readers at this year’s Flash Fiction Festival!!!

Monday, 4 June 2018

V. Press’s 2018 poetry submissions window has now closed, bringing with it an impressive selection of sample poems. Now, the delightful reading of submissions, followed by the hard decision on which pamphlets and collections to shortlist.

This process starts with a simple but very big thank you to everyone who has sent poems. V. Press editor Sarah Leavesley is very much looking forward to reading them. Whatever the final decisions are, each poem will be read and appreciated.

Because this year has brought even more submissions than before, this blogpost includes a brief run-through of what happens next, along with advance gratitude for poets' patience in terms of replies. (The time it takes V. Press to respond is in direct correlation to the standard of submissions and time it takes to consider each carefully!)

V. Press does allow simultaneous submissions at the pre-shortlist stage because of the time involved in reading submissions and responding – but we would ask anyone who has submitted elsewhere simultaneously to let us know asap if the manuscript is taken on by another press.

This year for the first time we also invited submissions for a guest editor role, and have been delighted by the response.

Once decisions have been made about shortlisted poets, V. Press will then also be in contact with those who’ve sent expressions of interest in the guest editor roles.

Finally, a thanks too for the many words of appreciation for current V. Press titles and a reminder that V. Press will be OPEN FOR FLASH FICTION SUBMISSIONS IN JULY 2018. More on how to submit here.

Friday, 1 June 2018

Launching There's Something Macrocosmic About All of This

V. Press is very very delighted to announce the publication of Santino Prinzis' flash fiction pamphlet There's Something Macrocosmic About All of This.

The short fiction in There’s Something Macrocosmic About All of This by Santino Prinzi is very human and very heart-provoking.

“Hilarious, playful, profound and fierce, these stories ring with wonder at the messy world of sex and love. Prinzi's fiction is addictive because of their unflinching sensuality and sharp attention to emotional detail.” Meg Pokrass

“InThere's Something Macrocosmic About All of This, Santino Prinzi looks for the big truths in everyday moments. From coming out to falling out, each of these stories is a nuanced study of human nature – full of insight and wit.” Christopher Allen

40 pages, R.R.P. £6.50

BUY a copy of There's Something Macrocosmic About All of This now using the paypal options below. 

There's Something Macrocosmic About All of This (including P&P)

A sample story from There's Something Macrocosmic About All of This may be enjoyed below.


The succulent is growing from a white porcelain pot on the kitchen windowsill. Its colouring varies in the light, from an almost neon that dazzles to a deep pine reminiscent of Christmas.

Jenni is sitting at the kitchen table. She’s reading Finnegan’s Wake. This is the only type of literature she’ll read. Real literature. Literature by dead people. This frustrates Kate. Though she can tolerate wet towels left on the bed, Kate wishes that Jenni would accept that contemporary fiction isn’t all Fifty Shades of Grey, poorly written crime thrillers, or some Frankenstein’s monster of the two. The monster novel exists in a bookcase or on a laptop somewhere in the world, of that Kate is certain, but not in this house.

Kate places a black coffee in front of Jenni and her white coffee on the other side of the table. She takes a seat and removes her bookmark from White Teeth. The bookmark is a metal letter ‘K’ that slightly tears the page if Kate isn’t careful. They both have a sip of coffee, not quite in unison, then Jenni reaches for the sugar. She struggles, her fingertips skimming the edge of the sugar pot. Kate pretends not to notice; her eyes are fixed on the word ‘memory’. She can’t help but watch Jenni in her periphery vision. Any other person may snigger, then offer to help. Kate just sits. Because it isn’t only the literature or the wet towels dampening the bed sheets; it’s everything that is and everything that isn’t. Everything that was. Everything that could be so much more than this.

Beneath the succulent’s healthy leaves that hang over the pot’s brim, dead leaves have shrivelled into soil that has become too dry. They are slowly decomposing, one on top of the other, out of sight. A bigger pot is needed if it is going to continue to grow.