A native of Castlecomer started an eBook publishing house dedicated to finding and supporting unique and diverse Irish authors.
Clare Appezzato, of Castlecomer, founded Castles in the Air Press, with Órla Carr of Donegal.
The woman from Kilkenny explained how the business came about.
“We created Castles in the Air Press in August 2020. We had both recently moved from Ireland to Vancouver, Canada when the pandemic hit. We initially moved here because we both wanted to work in the home publishing industry but found few opportunities In hopes of finding more in Canada we moved here, however the wave of CoronaVirus meant employment opportunities were few. After an online internship failed due to the pandemic, we both decided that we were fed up with waiting for an opportunity to show up and that we would create one ourselves.
“We announced that we are launching our own independent press. After incredible support from kind people in the publishing industry, we have started to receive very many submissions. We are very grateful to everyone who has submitted writings to Castles . We are constantly impressed with talent in Ireland, and one of our main goals with this company is to showcase it. From these submissions we found Radhika Iyer, who immediately struck a chord with us. , she said.
On August 1, the publishers launched their first book, Why are you here ?, written by Radhika Iyer, who currently lives in Dundalk. This is a powerful collection of short stories that focus on themes of femininity, identity, and domestic violence.
Iyer’s unique style is both quirky and powerful, as she exemplifies a sense of otherness, both as an immigrant and as a woman of color.
Iyer explores the struggle of being a woman across different cultures, as the stories take us from the heartbreaking results of a family scandal in Malaysia, to an internal cultural identity struggle in Dubai, to an abusive marriage amplified by the lockdown in Ireland.
This collection is ultimately about the female experience, and about being culturally different, in terms of shape and size.
The women in these stories face their internal and external battles, and as we follow their journeys, we come face to face with the struggle and strength of women. Radhika Iyer was born in Malaysia to migrant Indian parents and now lives in Dundalk.
Why are you here? is currently available at all e-book retailers, such as Apple Books, Kindle and Kobo and 10% of the purchase price will be donated to the Immigrant Council of Ireland.