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Keeping you up to date with all things OWN IT!

Because Stories Are Life.

PUBLISHING NEWS

On the 25th of April, we celebrate the Publication Birthday of Ashley Hickson-Lovence’s debut novel The 392.

Set entirely on a London bus travelling from Hoxton to Highbury and taking place over just 36 minutes, the events of The 392 unfold through a cast of charismatic characters coming from very different worlds, but tied together through a shared suspicion as the threat of terrorism looms.

Available in Hardback, Paperback + eBook.


LISTEN TO THIS…

OWN IT!’s #FIRSTFRIDAYS PLAYIST

In honour of the late Stuart Goodman, this month we’re re-sharing OWN IT!’s #FirstFriday playlist inspired by his photography book ONE SATURDAY IN 82 ON BROADWAY MARKET.

All the songs on this playlist were released in the UK in 1982, the same year these black and white photos were taken. Candidly picturing the lives of shoppers and shop owners on this East London market in Hackney, which has since become unrecognisable.

Travel back in time with us, to 1982.

April 2nd we marked the one-year anniversary of the passing of the late, great Stuart Goodman.

We first met Stuart in 2018 and were delighted to welcome him into the OWN IT! family. His candid black and white photography immediately spoke to us and we had the privilege of publishing his book, One Saturday in 82 on Broadway Market.⠀

His book is a heartfelt reminder of the importance of community spirit and preserves a time which would otherwise be easily forgotten. Stuart will be remembered, and he lives on through the beautiful photographs and words he left with us.

Goodman worked as a Fleet Street photographer and picture editor, first making his name as a prize-winning photographer during the 1975 Balcombe Street Siege between the IRA and London’s Metropolitan Police Service.⠀

Visit: stuartgoodman.co.uk to see more of his work.⠀

Click here to purchase ONE SATURDAY IN 82 ON BROADWAY MARKET + the postcards of photographs from Stuart’s book, that we released in celebration of its one-year anniversary.


READ THIS…

Film Reviews by Jude Yawson.

Check out these film reviews on our blog by Jude Yawson. Co-writer of Stormzy’s Rise Up: The #Merky Story So Far, Jude is a multifaceted writer of essays, articles, poetry and Film Reviews. Click here to read more about Jude.


BOOKSHOPS ARE BACK


Finally, it is once again safe to wander around our favourite local bookshops, browsing and finding unexpected tittles, turning over a real book in our hands and marching it up to the tills. Although some things might be a little different, such as exchanging smiles beneath masks and extra hand sanitiser, one thing that will remain the same is the sanity and tranquillity that comes when, as a reader, you can once again return to your natural habitat and pick up a book in a bricks and mortar bookshop.

With their reopening, it’s important for us all to support local bookshops and ensure their survival. These safe havens where us readers can lose ourselves in, are essential to our community.

Although it’s brilliant that we can jump on our phones and browse every book on earth and order it within seconds, there is just something completely different about the feeling of physically being inside a book store, running your finger across the spines of an array of books and deciding on one to take home. It’s not just about the transaction of a purchase, it’s the experience.

With the reopening of bookshops also returns the chance for people to talk to others, for human connection. It feels only right that bookshops reopening coincides with the sun shining fiercer and blue skies above. A sign maybe, that brighter, better days are on the way…ones that we can spend wandering around our favourite bookshops, once again.

Please always support indies. Here’s a list of some of OWN IT!’s favourite local indie bookshops:

New Beacon Books – newbeaconbooks.com

Libreria London – libreria.io

Pages of Hackney – pagesofhackney.com

The Broadway Bookshop – broadwaybookshop.com

Burley Fisher – burleyfisherbooks.com

Stoke Newington Bookshop – stokenewingtonbookshop.com

Newham Bookshop – newhambooks.co.uk

Happy Reading!


AGENCY NEWS


MRS DEATH MISSES DEATH

SALENA GODDEN.

Mrs Death has had enough. She is exhausted from spending eternity doing her job and now she seeks someone to unburden her conscience to. Wolf Willeford, a troubled young writer, is well acquainted with death, but until now hadn’t met Death in person – a black, working-class woman who shape-shifts and does her work unseen.

Get your copy here

Tickets on sale here

Check out these brilliant live events with Salena Godden.


CHECK THIS OUT


Great to see Ashley Hickson-Lovence’s brilliant novel The 392 on Jacqueline Roy’s list of The Best Black British Writers. Check out the interview for Five Books by Cal Flyn here.


Last years winner was our very own Derek Owusu and his incredible novel-in-verse That Reminds Me.

The first novel by Stormzy’s imprint + winner of the Desmond Elliott Prize 2020 –That Reminds Me – is a fresh and powerful debut – now available as a paperback here.

We love this article in The Bookseller on Indie publishers that are dominating the Desmond Elliot Prize longlist.


This  year six indie publishers have made the 10-strong longlist for this years £10,000 prize, including a first ever nomination for Unbound.

Indies making the list include Faber, Granta Books, Saraband, Scribe, Tramp Press and Unbound.

Check out the full article by Mark Chandler on The Bookseller here.

That Reminds Me is the story of one young man, from birth to adulthood, told in fragments of memory. It explores questions of identity, belonging, addiction, sexuality, violence, family and religion. It is a deeply moving and completely original work of literature from one of the brightest British writers of today.⠀


Visit WWW.OWNIT.LONDON/SHOP to check out all the amazing books we have on offer
Check out our shop here!

Staying up to date with all things OWN IT!

Because Stories Are Life.


OWN IT! AGENCY SPOTLIGHT


Golden Globe winner Idris Elba signs multi-book deal with HarperCollins

We’re delighted to share that we’ve done an exciting deal for London/ New York: Iconic and multi-award-winning actor, musician, filmmaker, and activist Idris Elba and Robyn Charteris who have signed a global multi-book deal with HarperCollins to publish a range of children’s books launching in 2022.

Read more about it here.


Check out this interview in The Guardian by Katy Guest with the incredible, taboo-busting poet, Salena Godden, discussing her first novel Mrs Death Misses Death. 

Read the full article here.


PUBLISHING NEWS


In celebration of the one-year anniversary of publication, we are releasing three postcards of photographs from Stuart’s book One Saturday In 82 On Broadway Market. 

Read more here

With every purchase of Stuart’s book we’ll include a free postcard print.

Get yours at WWW.OWNIT.LONDON/SHOP


This month we’re also celebrating another Publication Birthday!


MOMENTS OF SIGNIFICANCE by MC Angel (Shauna O’Briain) (Published 29.03.2018)

Moments of Significance is a non-linear narrative packed with poetry, prose, fragments of memories and mediations on life, philosophy and politics from an uncompromising voice. Told through Shauna’s personal experiences of growing up on an inner-city London council estate as a White Working Class Queer woman, Moments of Significance is an exploration of society and the political told through a very personal collage of experiences.

Get your copy here


LISTEN TO THIS…

OWN IT! #FIRSTFRIDAYS.

On the First Friday of every month, we release a playlist carefully curated with songs exploring the featured book of that month. ⠀

Our March playlist looks at the themes within the book THE 392 by Ashley Hickson-Lovence

Head over to ownit.london/first-fridays/ to check out the full playlist or listen on Spotify/ Apple Music.


READ THIS…

FILM REVIEW BY JUDE YAWSON

JUDAS AND THE BLACK MESSIAH

Read here


IN MARCH WE CELEBRATED…

WORLD BOOK DAY

+ INTERNATIONAL WOMEN’S DAY


Staying up to date with all things OWN IT!

Because Stories Are Life.


AGENCY NEWS


We are very excited to share that we’ve done a deal with Idris Elba’s production company Green Door Pictures, who have optioned Film/TV rights for Salena Godden’s time-travelling, genre-defying novel Mrs Death Misses Death.

Click here to read the full article.


Derek Owusu (author of That Reminds Me) to co-write a children’s book with Rudimental’s Leon “Locksmith” Rolle. 


Click here to read the full article

Scholastic partners with Black Cultural Archives to celebrate Windrush generation


The anthology will include contributions from OWN IT! family: Kevin George, Salena Godden, Ashley Hickson-Lovence, Jermain Jackman, Kirsty Latoya and Quincy The Comedian.
Read more about it here

LISTEN UP


OWN IT! #FirstFridays. An OWN IT! curated playlist released on the First Friday of every month.

Mrs Death Misses Death is a deep book, true. And death is a heavy subject. But it’s a book that is as much about life, hope, happiness and love as it is about death. This month’s playlist is powered by soulful voices, powerful emcees, jazz royalty and much more.

Check out our other OWN IT! curated playlists here.


PUBLISHING SPOTLIGHT


Due to so many of you loving the buy a book, gift a book to a Keyworker of your choice promo on How To: Be More Pirate by Sam Conniff and Alex Barker, we’ve decided to extend the offer until the end of March so that together we can gift even more books to Keyworkers to say THANK YOU!


Purchase a copy of Sam Conniff + Alex Barker’s, How To: Be More Pirate – and we’ll send a free copy to a nominated Key Worker of your choice.

Just add their name and address in the ‘Order Notes’ section when you’re checking out.

Click here to get yours


LOOKING FOR YOUR NEXT READ?


It’s been a crazy year or so and we’ve all spent a lot of it inside…and A LOT of it reading! Here are just a few of the books our authors and artists have been sinking their teeth into over the lockdowns.

Click here to see the full list and where to get them.


Because Stories Are Life.

Staying up to date with all things OWN IT!

AGENCY NEWS

Kicking off the year, January saw the publication of A River Called Time by author Courttia Newland. Known for The Scholar, and most recently as a screenwriter for award-winning director Steve McQueen’s five-part anthology Small Axe

Set in an alternate world where slavery and colonialism never happened, A River Called Time is at once a timely exploration of social inequality and a story about love and the search for the truth.

The Ark was built to save the lives of the many, but rapidly became a refuge for the elite, the entrance closed without warning.

Years after the Ark was cut off from the world, a chance of survival within its confines is granted to a select few who can prove their worth. Among their number is Markriss Denny, whose path to future excellence is marred only by a closely guarded secret: without warning, his spirit leaves his body, allowing him to see and experience a world far beyond his physical limitations. 

Once inside the Ark, Denny learns of another with the same power, whose existence could spell catastrophe for humanity. He is forced into a desperate race to understand his abilities, and in doing so uncovers the truth about the Ark, himself and the people he thought he once knew.


Published 7 January 2021 : Canongate Books

A River Called Time has already garnered much praise, reviews and features, including: 

Get your copy of A River Called Time from all good retailers (Waterstones/Amazon)
Support Independent Bookshops and purchase this book from Brick Lane Bookshop , Pages of Hackney, or Bookshop.org

Available in hardback, eBook and audiobook 


LISTEN UP

#FirstFridays – A River Called Time

An OWN IT! curated playlist released on the first Friday of every month.

LISTEN ON SPOTIFY HERE
LISTEN ON APPLE MUSIC HERE

Threading the themes of love, spirituality, time and space, while paying homage to London, this month’s #FirstFridays playlist takes you on a sonic journey inspired by the alternative world(s) in A River Called Time by Courttia Newland.

A universe where slavery never happened and African, Asian and ancient philosophies permeate the psyches and lives of its inhabitants. From hiphop, jungle and garage to soul, Jazz and rock, the journey begins…⠀


OUT 28 JANUARY

MRS DEATH MISSES DEATH

Salena Godden’s time-travelling, genre-defying story set in Modern London.

Meet Death in person – a black, working-class woman who shape-shifts and does her work unseen. 

Available for pre-order now from Waterstones/Amazon.
Support Independent Bookshops and purchase this book from Pages of Hackney or Bookshop.org

Published 28 January 2021: Canongate Books

The Bookseller Editor’s Choice
“An original, exuberant novel…truly one of a kind – don’t miss it”

JOIN US TOMORROW JANUARY 28

GET YOUR FREE TICKETS HERE

Featured in The Visionaries Issue of Harpers Bazaar

Mrs Death Misses Death is available as an audiobook – narrated by the author herself Salena Godden. Available for Pre-order now.

“It’s light, it’s dark, it’s twisted and it’s brilliant”
BENJAMIN ZEPHANIAH

Check out the two editions available of Mrs Death Misses Death. Support local independent bookshops and shop with them to purchase the exclusive edition of Salena Godden’s book in white. 

Join Salena Godden from the safety of your sofa for these online gigs and chats, BBC radio shows and festivals, special events and launch parties. Visit here to view the full list, including links to all previous and future sessions. 


OWN IT! AGENCY SPOTLIGHT

Author of Pure (Now a major Channel 4 series) Rose Cartwright to screen-write for Netflix’s new sci-fi series from Game of Thrones creators (David Beinoff and D.B. Weiss) and True Blood’s Alex Woo.⠀

Based on Lui Cixin’s enthralling novel series THE THREE BODY PROBLEM, the first Chinese science-fiction novel to be translated into English.

Cartwright secured the position as a writer for the upcoming series, off the back of a script she wrote about intergenerational trauma, which includes her experience of taking magic mushrooms and trauma work.

Although Cartwright never imagined she would find herself writing Sci-Fi, she has been drawn to it and forced by the circumstances of her life and mind to question the nature of her reality and what is real. Which in itself, is a key feature of the sci-fi genre.

Read more here.


Derek Owusu (author of That Reminds Me) to co-write children’s book with Rudimental’s Leon “Locksmith” Rolle.

Because Stories Are Life.

Keeping up to date with all things OWN IT!

PUBLISHING NEWS

#FIRST FRIDAYS – ONE SATURDAY IN 82 ON BROADWAY MARKET.

An OWN IT! curated playlist released on the first Friday of every month.

December’s Playlist is built around the late great Stuart Goodman’s photography book ONE SATURDAY IN 82 ON BROADWAY MARKET.⠀

The songs on this playlist were all released in the UK in 1982, and are reflective of the part of London the photographs were taken. From the burgeoning Dancehall of Jamaica, to New Wave, Pop, Hip Hop and Soul. These songs capture the spirit of the time and place


LOOKING BACK AT 2020

Here’s a look back at what we’ve published this year.

  • One Saturday in 82 on Broadway Market – by Stuart Goodman
  • HOW TO: Be More Pirate – by Sam Conniff + Alex Barker
  • Endless Fortune – by Ify Adenuga

Stuart Goodman’s One Saturday in 82 on Broadway Market preserves images of an East London landmark, featuring Stuart Goodman’s account of his and Stephen Selby’s role in setting up a community initiative to save Broadway Market from demolition.

Goodman speaks of the London that existed before gentrification. An East London native brought up on a Hackney council estate, Goodman had lived in the market and been a shop keeper there for 6 months before photographing it for the first time. ⠀

Get your copy here⠀

HOW TO: Be More Pirate by Sam Conniff + Alex Barker.

The follow-up book to Sam Conniff’s Be More Pirate. Whether you want to overcome personal limitations, upend the status quo in your line of work, or find some co-conspirators, this book will help you to be more radical, relentless, and ambitious in your life and work.

Available in paperback here
and now available as an audiobook from Audible here.

ENDLESS FORTUNE by Ify Adenuga

Ify’s powerful memoir is the first book of its kind from the mother of four highly successful British creatives (Skepta JME, Julie Adenuga and Jason Adenuga) to examine the experience of the African diaspora and the complications around immigration from a personal perspective.

Get your copy now from IFYADENUGA.COMWaterstonesAmazon + All good retailers.

If you missed out in June, you can still catch-up on all sessions via our Youtube channel.

OWN IT! Onlline Fest

A Virtual Festival by OWN IT!

In June of this year, we put on an Online Festival, featuring 20 OWN IT! authors and artists and consisting of workshops, Insta live talks, discussions and conversations, animation, comedy, poetry and live readings.

CLICK HERE TO WATCH NOW

OWN IT! AGENCY SPOTLIGHT

With 2021 round the corner, look out for these exciting reads to come.

A River Called Time by Courttia Newland. OUT 7 JANUARY 2021

Set in an alternate world where slavery and colonialism never happened, Courttia Newland’s staggering novel is both a timely exploration of social inequality and a story about love, loyalty and the search for the truth. For more information visit here

Courttia Newland’s alternative, decolonised vision of London is a staggering feat of imagination. There’s so much to love here: an everyman hero who discovers he has abilities that are anything but ordinary, parallel cities across a multiverse, African cosmology belief systems, a keep-them-guessing ending . . . An amazing achievement”

NOEL CLARKE

Available for pre-order here.


Mrs Death Misses Death by Salena Godden. OUT 28 JANUARY 2021

Set in an alternate world where slavery and colonialism never happened, Courttia Newland’s staggering novel is both a timely exploration of social inequality and a story about love, loyalty and the search for the truth. For more information visit here

A fantastically imaginative story about life, death and everything in between – a potent reminder that life is short and every second should be cherished”

IDRIS ELBA

Check out the two editions available of Mrs Death Misses Death. Support local independent bookshops and shop with them to purchase the exclusive edition of Salena Godden’s book in white.

Available for pre-order here.

NATIONAL LITERACY TRUST: GAME CHANGERS – TRUE STORIES – Interviews with excluded role models.

Featuring OWN IT!’s Jude Yawson, Nile Ranger and MC Angel.

Watch all episodes on Youtube here

HAPPY HOLIDAYS, from OWN IT! x

This year…give the gift of a story…Because Stories Are Life.

It’s been a tough year for all of us, but here’s looking at a better year for everyone to come. Happy New Year from everyone at OWN IT! x

See you in 2021!