Because David Levinson and I write books as well as edit and publish them, Berkshire Publishing Group might be described as an attempt by two nonfiction and academic authors to create a new, independent path to reach markets, and readers. It could be seen as a kind of expanded version of self-publishing, although our work focuses first on making the work of networks of scholars available, and we do publish with other larger companies, too.
We are husband and wife, or wife and husband, as well as publishing partners, and because of that I’ve sometimes reminded myself that Virginia and Leonard Woolf also started a small publishing company, the Hogarth Press, publishing VW’s work as well as the work of people like T. S. Eliot. Few remember that The Waste Land was originally published by a mom-and-pop shop, as the venture capitalists so kindly describe a business like ours. Small publishing that includes one’s own books is not just for autism or aliens or other highly specialized topics.
I have a connection to T. S. Eliot through an early job as editorial assistant on the TSE Letters (see my recent Guardian article, “Dear Mrs. Eliot,” for details), and now find that the Woolfs lived in Mecklenburgh Square, where I stay in London, at the Goodenough Club. They ran the Hogarth Press from here during the early days of World War II.