Comics Youth launches first young person led publisher in the UK

Marginal Publishing House will host their official, belated launch at a free event at Williamson Art Gallery & Museum in Birkenhead later this month, as the UK’s first youth-led publishing house, publishing solely marginalised authors under the age of 25.

The launch of the Marginal Publishing House, on Saturday 27th January from 12 noon, has been organised, and will be hosted by, young people from the Comics Youth’s Safe Spaces Project. The free event, open to the general public, will see 15 publications from Marginal being shared and celebrated through author Q+A’s, writing and illustration workshops, and a panel discussion involving publishers, stockists and activists in the publishing sector.

Young people attending will receive a free Marginal publication, and there will also be an arts market filled with young creators and makers throughout the day.

The Marginal Publishing House exists to give marginalised youth a platform to refine their skills and get their voices heard through printed media – whether that is comics, graphic novels, short stories, poetry books and more.

The launch of the Marginal Publishing House is a chance for people within Merseyside to gain insight into the often closed world of publishing and celebrate the people who are often overlooked and ignored when it comes to sharing their stories.

“The publishing sector has historically been one dominated by white, upper class, able-bodied men and it is time that we begin to write a new history,” says Comics Youth in a press announcement. “The launch of the Marginal Publishing House signifies a shift in who is leading the discussions around inclusivity in publishing, sharing ways more young people can get involved in the sector and skill-sharing for people to start creating their own works to be shared with the world.”

“The world of publishing is one that can, and should, change. Marginal Publishing House is at the forefront of this change!” enthuses Emily McChrystal, Youth Empowerment Director.

“The young people have worked so hard on this event, and it is a real honour to see all their ideas come to life,” said Projects Coordinator Ailis Lord. “We hope that people come along and celebrate all that it means to be inclusive and creative in Merseyside.”

“It cannot be understated how important this event is for the community,” added Anna Macdonald, Projects Manager, “now more than ever we need people to invest their time and care into young people’s creative works and community-led initiatives.”

The award-winning Comics Youth was founded in 2015 and is a creative community organisation led by young people, for young people. Its aim is to empower youth across the Liverpool City Region to flourish from the margins of society: harnessing their own narratives, finding confidence within an inclusive community, and developing the resilience to succeed on their own path.

The Marginal Publishing House was founded in 2019, described as “a revolution in publishing”. Led by young people, for young people, Marginal it’s the first youth-led publisher of its kind in the UK.

“With it, we hope to not just change the landscape of young people’s reading in the UK, we also strive to use Marginal as a platform with which to nurture marginalised talent and express a diverse set of voices and experiences which are currently going unheard. Working closely with young creators to help them realise and develop their vision, Marginal aims to publish a diverse collection of books which reflect the full diaspora of identities, backgrounds, experiences, and perspectives of marginalised young people.”

Marginal Publishing House Official Launch, 12 noon – 5.00pm, Saturday 27th January 2024, Williamson Art Gallery & Museum, Slatey Road, Birkenhead, Wirral, CH43 4UE | Free – all welcome

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