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From the Editors

1st September 2016

Slightly Foxed Issue 51: From the Editors

After the events of the past few months, we must admit that, though extremely cheerful and optimistic, we’re also feeling a bit ruminative here in the office. Somehow the timeless and civilizing things we hope Slightly Foxed stands for seem more important than ever at a moment of change like this. We hope, anyway, that with the arrival of this autumn issue you can relax, draw the curtains – actual or metaphorical – and, as one of our American readers recently described it, ‘breathe a sigh of relief and slip into a world of thoughtfulness and good humor’.
- Gail Pirkis & Hazel Wood
From the editors
1st June 2016

Slightly Foxed Issue 50: From the Editors

We had quite a celebration for our tenth anniversary in 2014 and now this summer we’ve reached what feels to us like another significant milestone – our 50th issue. You could say Slightly Foxed has reached middle age, but it still has a spring in its step and we enjoy putting it together as much now as we did when four of us sat round the kitchen table (one of us holding a baby who is now at secondary school) and planned the first issue. One of our somewhat irrational fears at the time was that we might run out of books to write about, and people to write about them, but the reverse has been the case. We know from the steady stream of suggestions arriving from contributors inside and outside the literary world that there are still countless unusual and fascinating books to discover. That’s another enjoyable aspect of editing SF: the proof, if one were needed, that you don’t have to be a ‘writer’ to be able to write.
- Gail Pirkis & Hazel Wood
From the editors
1st March 2016

Slightly Foxed Issue 49: From the Editors

As everyone who lives here knows, spring in London doesn’t just signal daffodils in window boxes and budding trees in squares. It signals building projects. The whole city seems to be in a state of upheaval – ‘streets broken through and stopped; deep pits and trenches dug in the ground; enormous heaps of earth and clay thrown up . . . piles of scaffolding, and wildernesses of bricks’. That sounds like today, but in fact it’s Dickens in Dombey and Son describing the coming of the railway to Camden Town. London is forever changing and it’s certainly doing so now around the Slightly Foxed office in Hoxton Square – still fortunately a small haven of quiet, though only a few minutes’ walk from the gleaming office blocks of the new ‘Tech City’ rising around Old Street tube station.
- Gail Pirkis & Hazel Wood
From the editors
1st December 2015

Slightly Foxed Issue 48: From the Editors

By now most of us have probably begun the often rather agonized run-up to Christmas – the worry about what to buy for whom and where to find it. For Slightly Foxed readers, we suspect books are likely to feature somewhere in that list. Quite recently we read a piece by The Times columnist Jenni Russell bemoaning the fact that so many disappointing books by well-known writers are ludicrously overpromoted these days. Publishing, she wrote, ‘doesn’t prioritize what’s good, it prioritizes what’s new’.
- Gail Pirkis & Hazel Wood
From the editors
1st September 2015

Slightly Foxed Issue 47: From the Editors

It’s hard to believe autumn is here already. But the days are shortening, the air is growing brisker, and gradually the city is coming to life again as people trickle back after the long summer break. London is back in business, and it’s all go here in the Slightly Foxed office, with the latest of the Slightly Foxed Editions and Slightly Foxed Cubs arriving from the printers, and some new projects afoot.
- Gail Pirkis & Hazel Wood
From the editors
1st June 2015

Slightly Foxed Issue 46: From the Editors

Now the long summer days are here we like to get out of the city, to meet subscribers and get to know some of the many independent local bookshops which, in spite of difficult times, are still very much alive and kicking. On 11 June we’ll be in Suffolk at just such a shop, Harris & Harris in the pretty old wool town of Clare, to launch the summer issue and the latest of the Slightly Foxed Editions, Adrian Bell’s Silver Ley (see p.13).
- Gail Pirkis & Hazel Wood
From the editors
1st December 2014

Slightly Foxed Issue 44: From the Editors

Another year almost gone. The lights are going on early now in Hoxton Square, and on misty evenings there’s a sense of a ghostly earlier London hovering just out of reach, while only a few hundred yards away down Old Street huge shiny office blocks are rising to create a new ‘Tech City’. It’s making us feel a bit ruminative. Thanks to Jennie and all the young staff, we’re keeping up with and making good use of all the new technology, but we do also cling to what might be called ‘old-fashioned’ values – giving a really prompt and personal service to readers, keeping up our production standards, not cutting corners on writing and editing, and treating our suppliers and contributors decently. Thanks to you we’ve survived the recession, but things are still very tough for small businesses like Slightly Foxed, and our values do come at a cost.
- Gail Pirkis & Hazel Wood
From the editors
1st June 2014

Slightly Foxed Issue 42: From the Editors

With travel in the air, summer’s a time when we think particularly of all those subscribers who read their copies of Slightly Foxed in farflung places. We have subscribers in 60 countries now, and in this tenth anniversary year we’d like to say thank you once again to all of you, at home and abroad, for supporting us, and particularly to those of you who have stuck with us through – as the late publisher Antony Blond once memorably put it – thin and thin. We had an excellent anniversary party – at the Art Workers’ Guild in Bloomsbury, already familiar to some of you from Readers’ Day. Speeches were made, glasses were raised, and Slightly Famous People’s Foxes, the little book we’re publishing in aid of the Children’s Hospital School at Great Ormond Street, was successfully launched.
- Gail Pirkis & Hazel Wood
From the editors
1st March 2014

Slightly Foxed Issue 41: From the Editors

As we mentioned in the last issue, we’re marking our tenth anniversary this year in various ways, but perhaps most importantly with the publication of a very unusual little book. It’s called Slightly Famous People’s Foxes and proceeds from the sale will go to buy books for the Hospital School at Great Ormond Street, which enables children to continue their education while they are there. These won’t be textbooks but books to read for pleasure – most of us probably know how just the right book can ease a stay in hospital, especially for children who may be in isolation or having long and painful treatments. It’s a cause close to our hearts, and we’d be delighted if you felt able to give it your support. The book costs a very affordable £5, and you’ll find a leaflet and an order form enclosed with this issue.
- Gail Pirkis & Hazel Wood
From the editors
1st December 2013

Slightly Foxed Issue 40: From the Editors

This fortieth issue is a very special one for us. It marks the beginning of our anniversary year – ten years since we came up with the idea for Slightly Foxed and tentatively put together our first issue. They’re years in which we’ve got to know some of the most likeable and entertaining people – both subscribers and contributors – enjoyed some of the best laughs, been introduced to some of the best books, and had some of the most varied (and sometimes eccentric) experiences. During those years children have married and grandchildren have been born, Slightly Foxed has grown, and we’ve been joined by some exceptionally nice, clever and hardworking young members of staff. We can only say thank you to the Fox and to all of you who’ve supported us for giving us some of the happiest years of our working lives.
- Gail Pirkis & Hazel Wood
From the editors
1st September 2013

Slightly Foxed Issue 39: From the Editors

The summer has sped by and we’ve been travelling, giving talks about Slightly Foxed (with the essential tea and cakes) at the kind of small local festivals that often seem to have more meaning than the bigger events. They’re a great opportunity for us to meet local subscribers and see some very beautiful parts of the country. On 20 September we’ll be in another lovely place, Much Wenlock in Shropshire, where we’ll be talking at Wenlock Books.
- Gail Pirkis & Hazel Wood
From the editors
1st March 2013

Slightly Foxed Issue 37: From the Editors

We’re now comfortably settled at our new home in Hoxton Square which, being a proper office rather than part of a flat, is far more spacious and functional than Brewhouse Yard. We do miss the spectacular view we had there of London’s domes and towers rising against the sky behind St Paul’s, but we’re enjoying the edgy inner city feel of Hoxton with its little specialist bookshops, vegetarian restaurants and bicycles chained to the railings among the plane trees and scruffy city pigeons. Thank you so much, all of you who sent us good wishes for the move and appreciative Christmas cards. We were extremely touched to receive them.
- Gail Pirkis & Hazel Wood
From the editors
1st December 2012

Slightly Foxed Issue 36: From the Editors

It seems, as they say, only yesterday that we were telling you Slightly Foxed would be moving – in fact it was in 2004 that we moved from our original ‘office’ round the kitchen table of Gail’s home in Canonbury to the family’s new home in Clerkenwell. For eight years we roosted gratefully at Dickinson Court, gradually expanding, like the proverbial cuckoo, until we’d virtually taken over; turning the spare room into a post room, filling every available alcove with back issues and filing trays, and the hall with bicycles and parcels of books.
- Gail Pirkis & Hazel Wood
From the editors

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