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Visual Verse Submissions from Writers

Visual Verse launches August Edition with Edan Lepuki and Katherine Fawssett


Truth is stranger than fiction. Back in the dark days before Visual Verse began, our editor was (and still is) an avid reader of The Millions, a great books website based in the USA. She was particularly struck by an article called ‘Shutting the Drawer, What happens when a book doesn’t sell?’ published on August 23, 2011. It was honest, it was funny, it was painful – it was absolutely what doesn’t get said among the brouhaha that surrounds debut authors. It was by a Millions staff writer called Edan Lepuki, who has an MFA from Iowa writers’ workshop.

Fast forward three years. Visual Verse is 9 months old and Edan Lepuki’s first published novel is about to be launched in the UK. On 7 August, in just one week’s time CALIFORNIA will be on our bookshop shelves. We are thrilled to publish Edan in the UK a week before her novel comes out, and have her headlining Visual Verse for the month. Read More

Introducing… November Editions


The latest project we’ve worked on (and that we’re delighted to introduce you to) is November Editions. Based in Amsterdam and Berlin, November Editions is a new publisher, specialising in first-time English-language translations of German Expressionist and other Modernist writing from the early 20th century. Their books will appear exclusively in electronic format.

November Editions uncovers plenty of hidden and forgotten gems, starting with their first round of books, which introduce English-language audiences to work from Karl Kraus, Walter Rheiner and Carl Einstein. Read More

It all starts with Matilda: Nerys Hudson to join The Curved House


Photo: Marie J. Burrows

I’m thrilled to announce that the fabulous Nerys Hudson, from Dialogue Berlin, will be joining The Curved House in June as Publishing Assistant. Nerys will offer editorial assistance across the entire Curved House project list including digital and print projects.

Those within the English-language publishing community in Berlin know only too well how loved Nerys is. She comes well-trained in bookselling and book marketing after working with Sharmaine Lovegrove at Dialogue for several years and brings a calm efficiency to everything she does. Her experience in bookselling, PR/marketing, events and her design skills (that have even been picked up by the Penguin UK design blog) make her a great fit for The Curved House. Read More

Stella Duffy leads May edition of Visual Verse


May is a strange month – neither spring nor summer – a time of transitions at the turn of the season. Our image by Berlin based photographer Alice Connew captures that ambivalence perfectly. A shoulder, a quilt. Male or female? Happy or sad? To get up, or stay in bed? At Visual Verse we try to publish images that provoke questions. Who better to lead the site this month than Stella Duffy, a writer who explores every form and every subject, (she’s been nominated for the (once named) Orange Prize and even appeared in The Bill – how many writers can say that?) She’s written crime and literary fiction – perfect for our strange image, which evokes beauty and potential violence in equal measure. This month we also introduce a ‘previously unpublished’ slot, occupied now by Maya Dawson a young writer with a delicate sense of relationships. Vidyan Ravinthiran is a poet and Keasbey Research Fellow at Selwyn College, Cambridge. His first collection, Grun-tu-molani, is out now from Bloodaxe. And Victoria Gosling, who is represented by Rogers Coleridge and White, writes novels and short stories, and is the founder of The Reader Berlin, an author and publishing consultancy. Not too busy then! We hope you enjoy reading, writing and submitting this month. Thanks so much for all the support, Visual Verse is now six months old and we could not be more thrilled by your responses.

Kristen, Preti and Pete

April Edition of Visual Verse Launches with Marcus Bastel and Adam Foulds

This month we are thrilled to have art by Marcus Bastel to inspire us, and the words of Booker nominated Adam Foulds to get us thinking about just how powerful language can be. Adam’s new book In the Wolf’s Mouth (Jonathan Cape) is set in Sicilly and opens with the kind of power only a writer at the top of his game can muster. Yet Adam brings the same poetry that was so much in evidence in The Quickening Maze and The Broken Word — the ability to look unflinchingly but with compassion at human nature’s worst excesses.
Adam Fould's new writing Visual Verse

Alongside Adam our other lead writers are Carey Marcus, whose strange, rhythmic style suits this vision of a girl soldier in her final hours. Cambridge poet Rod Mengham’s prose poetry is exacting and precise — two qualities that Visual Verse really admires. Rod’s most recent reading was at the Runnymeade Literary Festival and his pamphlets are widely published. Finally, we bring you two voices of experience — Francesca Recchia, who has worked and taught in such places as Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan and Palestine, and whose Little Book of Kabul is a revelation about people in a city we rarely get insight into. And Uche Okonkwo, whose perfectly formed short story comes straight from Nigeria, via winning the £1,000 inaugural Etisalat prize for flash fiction. Links and things are here:

In the Wolf’s Mouth
Little Book of Kabul
Uche Okonkwo
Rod Mengham

We are looking forward to reading all the writing the month will bring, and hope you enjoy the offerings.
Kristen and Preti

Publishing Assistant, P/T 3-4 days per week, Berlin


The Curved House_Logo_BLACK_FBDescribed by the UK Bookseller as “the ultimate hybrid company”, The Curved House is a creative and energetic publishing and production business based in Berlin. We design and produce books, websites and multimedia for publishers and authors (mainly UK-based) and we run highly sought-after web and social media trainings for authors in collaboration with organisations like the Society of Authors and The Literary Consultancy. We also publish our own books under the Curved House Kids imprint and run the not-for-profit online anthology, Visual Verse.

We are seeking an exceptional Publishing Assistant to work 3-4 days per week alongside the Publisher in our Berlin office.

The role:

You will be assisting in three key areas of our work: production/design, marketing and sales. This is a dynamic role and requires someone who is reliable and organised, but also creative and imaginative. An interest in design and a flair for social media are a must. This role would suit someone who is drawn to the creative side of publishing  (design, production, marketing) and who is excited by working for a small company that can offer experience across the entire publishing process.

You will:

  • Offer administrative support to the Publisher in all aspects of our work – particularly project work, marketing and sales
  • Manage your own publishing projects (books, websites and videos) including managing budgets and liaising directly with clients
  • Liaise with key suppliers including editors, designers, typesetters, printers and web developers
  • Assist with the organisation and running of events
  • Run the social media accounts for The Curved House and Curved House Kids
  • Be responsible for editing and updating our websites
  • Fulfill orders from our shop: www.curvedhouseeditions.com
  • Create sales and marketing materials such as flyers, postcards and posters
  • Assist with researching and writing proposals and funding applications

The successful candidate will:

  • Have a minimum of 2 years publishing or bookselling experience
  • Have an innate understanding of high quality design (practical design skills would be a distinct advantage)
  • Be passionate about books and literacy
  • Demonstrate excellent computer skills and the ability to learn new programmes quickly
  • Be social media savvy  and undaunted by running multiple SM accounts on multiple platforms
  • Have impeccable written and spoken English language skills (German an advantage)
  • Have excellent attention to detail
  • Be thoughtful, friendly and a great communicator across all mediums
  • Be a self-starter who can work independently and set own goals
  • Be enthusiastic about working for a young publishing start-up
  • Be looking to develop a career in publishing

Note: Applicants must be legally permitted to work in German and/or the EU for a minimum of 12 months.

If this sounds like you, and the idea of working for a growing publishing company excites you, then please apply in writing to kristen@thecurvedhouse.com with a CV and a covering letter explaining why you are right for this position. Please include details of your current salary and notice period in your covering letter.

The closing date for applications is 5pm GMT, Friday 18th April
Shortlisted candidates will be contacted on Monday 21st April
Interviews will take place on Wednesday 23rd April
The successful applicant will be required to start no later than Monday 26th May

Denise Nestor Adam Marek Visual Verse

March edition of Visual Verse launches with Denise Nestor and Adam Marek

This month’s ‘visual’ is by the artist Denise Nestor whose exquisite pencil drawings have appeared in The New Review, the New York Times and have been published by Curved House EditionsAnd this month’s lead ‘verse’ is from award-winning writer, Adam Marek, whose work has appeared in magazines and anthologies including Prospect and The Sunday Times Magazine, The Stinging Fly and The London Magazine, and in anthologies such as The Best British Short Stories 2011 and 2013His short story collections The Stone Thrower and Instruction Manual for Swallowing are published in the UK by Comma Press, and in North America by ECW Press.We also feature new writing by Kristen Kreider who, as part of the collaborative pair Kreider+O’Leary, exhibited the work Light Vessel Automatic at Performing Architecture at Tate Britain in 2013 and Edge City at the Lisbon Architecture Triennale in Lisbon from Sept-Dec 2013. Her academic monograph Poetics and Place: the Architecture of Sign, Subjects and Site is out now.Writing by Olivia Dawson, whose poetry has been published in Magma and Matt Bryden, whose first collection Boxing the Compass was published by Templar in 2013, demonstrates again how elastic the imagination is, how powerful the art of expression, how infinitely surprising the meeting of art and words can be.

We’re pleased to announce new features on the site – you can now see your own contributions from each month by title or by your name all in one place. We are also doing our best to bend WordPress to our postmodern wills – it takes time, so the more simple you keep your formatting, the easier it still is for us – nevertheless, we are doing our best to publish all kinds of writing – poetry, fiction, life writing, witnesses, all of it in response to some astonishing contemporary art.

So here is March, dear writers, to be filled with your responses. 50-500 words and written within an hour. The image is the starting point, the rest is up to you. Thank you for your support!

Kristen Harrison and Preti Taneja
Visual Verse: Anthology of Art and Words

A new and improved Visual Verse


Today we launch our February edition of Visual Verse with a captivating image by Irish photographer, Erin Quinn. Writer Eliza Granville, whose new novel ‘Gretel and the Dark’ will be published by Hamish Hamilton on 6th February leads this month’s edition with her powerful piece, COME CLOSER, IF YOU DARE. We also have some extraordinary new writing by Sarah Howe, William Searle and Liz Bahs. So, what are you waiting for? 50 -500 words. One hour. The picture is the starting point, the text is up to you.

This month we’ve also taken the opportunity to make some improvements to the site that mean writers can more readily share their work, and we can interact better with you. Here’s what we’ve done:

  • Added a field on the submission form so you can add your Twitter name. When your piece goes live this will make it easier for us to tweet it!
  • Improved the archive so that writers’ names and the titles of their work now link directly to submissions by that writer. You can see all your own submissions on one page.
  • New and improved formatting to allow us to offer more flexibility with how your work is presented.

Hope you like the new site. Visual Verse is now three months old: we are so thrilled with the response so far and can’t wait to see the inspired writing this February image brings.

Preti Taneja (Editor) and Kristen Harrison (Curator)

Visit Visual Verse
curved house kids make your own book

The Curved House launch “make-your-own” book series


The Curved House launches new children’s picture book series aimed at breaking down the barriers to reading for digital native kids

Press Release – 16 December, 2014

The Curved House brings its flair for innovation to children’s publishing with the launch of The Curved House Kids, a new children’s publishing company that aims to empower and inspire kids by allowing them to produce their very own books.

With more than 23% of children and young people in the United Kingdom saying they “rarely” or “never” read, The Curved House Kids books aim to counter the reasons kids may not be reading, whether it be learning difficulties, additional needs, lack of confidence, or the ubiquitous distractions of digital technologies.

Publisher Kristen Harrison says: “We are living in an increasingly visual world with more and more demands on our attention, even at primary school age, and books must evolve to compete with this. Visual literacy is a critical part of this evolution as it ensures that the way children interact with our books mirrors the way they interact with the wider world.”

There are two types of books in this series: Illustrate-Your-Own have a story but not pictures, so that children can illustrate their own books and Write-Your-Own have illustrations but not words, so kids can write their own books. The tactile, interactive approach is a deliberate tactic to make sure the books are fun, empowering and accessible.

curved house kids visual literacy books


Harrison says “This is about nurturing creativity and imagination but it’s also about helping kids understand the entire creative process – from start to finish. Our kids are digital natives with access to a lot of free entertainment, so it’s up to us to educate them about the value of creating something.”

Curved House Kids provides an online gallery where children can upload images of their completed books for others to see and enjoy. Partnerships with schools, festivals and libraries in 2014 will encourage kids to develop their own ‘list’ of books and create their own libraries and bookshops. And with The Curved House’s background in print and digital production, they have already begun to develop the prototype of a Make-Your-Own books app for smartphones and tablets.

The Curved House Kids is proud to donate 20p from every copy sold to Booktrust’s new Children’s Reading Fund, specifically the work they do for children with additional needs. And they are keen to engage with parents, teachers and organisations to ensure the list continues to deliver inclusive books.

For more information please contact the Publisher:

Kristen Harrison, kristen@thecurvedhouse.com
Mob. (+49) 176 876 02770 Landline (+49) 30 755 66402

Visit the Curved House Kids website


For more information about the Curved House Kids visit www.curvedhousekids.com and for examples of books illustrated by kids visit www.curvedhousekids.com/your-books

Described by The Bookseller as “the ultimate hybrid company”, The Curved House is a publishing and production company that works across print and digital. Clients include Guardian Books, Penguin Random House, Waterstones, Booktrust and many more. They are responsible for non-profit initiatives including the Sober October campaign to support indie bookshops, as well as the new digital art/words anthology, Visual Verse, launched in November with the support of patrons Andrew Motion, Ali Smith and Bernadine Evaristo.

Visit https://www.thecurvedhouse.com/ for more information.

Title information:

My Summer Snowman written by Chester Travis
ISBN 978-0-9927302-1-5 RRP £4.99 / €5.99
Publication: 15 November 2013

Monster Small, Monster Big written by Keith Tilbury
ISBN 978-0-9927302-0-8 £4.99 / €5.99
Publication: 15 November 2013

Grandma’s Jungle Party illustrated by Ben Hawkes
ISBN 978-0-9927302-2-2 £5.99 / €6.99
Publication: 12 December 2013

Up, Up, in to Space! Illustrated by Megan Archer
ISBN 978-0-9927302-3-9 £5.99 / €6.99
Publication: 12 December 2013

Curved House Kids Books

Sales and Marketing Assistant (freelance)

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5 weeks full time: 17 November – 20 December

The Curved House is seeking a sales and marketing assistant to support the launch of our new children’s picture book series. The role is full time from 17 November until 20 December and based in Berlin, however UK-based applicants may be considered in special circumstances.

You will work closely with the publisher to assist with the launch, marketing and sales of a series of four picture books. You will also be responsible for sales and marketing related to our online editions shop: www.curvedhouseeditions.com.

This is an exciting opportunity for a hardworking, creative and ambitious person who is looking to develop a career in publishing or the arts. This six week period will focus on the launch of this series, however, beyond that there is scope to work on other Curved House projects including our book design and production, websites and the Visual Verse anthology.

Your duties will include:
• Establishing and running a social media presence for the children’s books.
• Making contact with shops, galleries and retail outlets in the UK, Ireland and Germany to promote our books.
• Organising and project managing two in-store events in the lead-up to Christmas.
• Occasionally bringing us a flat white from around the corner. (Just kidding!)

You must have
• A minimum of 2 years experience working in publishing, the arts or in any field relating to children’s literacy.
• Sales and/or marketing experience in any field.
• Excellent computer skills and a strong knowledge of MS Office.
• Excellent attention to detail.
• A love of books and art and a respect for good design.

This role is 6 weeks full time from the Berlin office with scope of extending the position into the new year. You will be joining a growing team with an exciting portfolio of work spanning books, websites and multimedia.

About Us

The Curved House is a publishing and production house working from both Berlin and London. We produce books and websites for authors and publishers, run trainings around the web and social media, and publish our own limited edition books and prints. We also run the side project Visual Verse: www.visualverse.org – an online anthology that encourages collaborations between artists and writers. We love book design, are passionate about literacy and hope to change the world a little bit with our new series of inclusive, empowering kids books.

To apply please email a short CV or link to Linked-in along with a brief covering letter (not more than one page) answering these two questions:

1. Why do you want to work for us?

2. If you had all the resources in the world, what would you do to improve children’s literacy?

How hard can that be now, eh?  Applicants to: kristen@thecurvedhouse.com

Applications close: Wednesday 13th November
Interviews to take place: Friday 15th
Start date: Monday 18th November