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Book lovers rally to save Norfolk publishing company from debt - raising £10k in 24 hours

PUBLISHED: 20:12 30 May 2018 | UPDATED: 10:03 31 May 2018

Cromer based publishing company, Salt Publishing run by Chris and Jen Hamilton-Emery, had one of their books nominated for the Man Booker Prize 2012. Chris and Jen with the book, The Lighthouse by Alison Moore.
PHOTO: ANTONY KELLY

Cromer based publishing company, Salt Publishing run by Chris and Jen Hamilton-Emery, had one of their books nominated for the Man Booker Prize 2012. Chris and Jen with the book, The Lighthouse by Alison Moore. PHOTO: ANTONY KELLY

© ARCHANT NORFOLK 2012

A Cromer-based publishing company has been saved by the kindness of book lovers across the world.

Salt Publishing, founded by Christopher and Jen Hamilton-Emery in 1999, has been freed from financial trouble after more than 600 book orders were placed in just 24 hours.

With their total sales down 41pc, the company quickly ate through £25,000 of reserves in a few months, leaving them in debt.

However it wasn’t until Tuesday, May 29 that they realised they had a serious problem.

Mr Hamilton-Emery said: “It’s been very, very tough, we have spent 18 months trying to climb out of debt.

“Those debts aren’t especially huge, around £10,000 in all, but the challenges of finding that money and the cash for advances and contributor fees for our new books, left us in a very precarious position.

“Yesterday it all became clear that we were in trouble. We knew we had to ask for help from our deeply loyal fan base of readers - they’re all over the world, from Canada to Australia.”

Salt Publishing put out an appeal on Twitter, which asked readers to buy one book from their online store, with the hashtag #JustOneBook.

So far the appeal has been shared over 1,000 times and the support continues to flood in, from readers, authors and publishers alike.

“Since the call out, we have received hundreds of orders and raised £10,000,” said Mr Hamilton-Emery. “We can’t believe the viral response of the past day. It’s been wonderful. Humbling. Very emotional. It shows you that the years you put in to serving writers and readers truly does build a community.”

He added: “We can simply be too immersed in getting a text right, talking to booksellers and agents, designers, printers... Then this happens and you realise that there’s a large world of readers out there who, I guess, respect what you do and admire the aims, the goal of the business - we just want to publish great books for great readers.”

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