focus on: 3 of cups

I am most pleased to be joined by 3 of Cups, a micropublisher from the UK!
1. Tell me a little bit about 3 of Cups Press! What are your guiding ideas/principles?
3 of Cups came about because of my own personal frustrations with the publishing and art world. Publishing is, as most are probably aware, hyper-exclusive and only accessible to people who are lucky to be born upper/middle class, white and with easy access to education and internships. I’ve worked in publishing for a few years and the unfairness of the industry is incredibly stark. I wanted to a) help people normally excluded gain access to being published and b) have a bit more creative control. Our most important guiding idea is probably that we want to help writers and artists. This means paying them, promoting all of their work, and hopefully giving them a leg up so they can be part of the industry in a wider way.
2. What’s the story behind the title/brand 3 of Cups?
The 3 of Cups tarot card has long been my favourite tarot card. It depicts three female figures in a circle, holding up cups. It symbolises family and friends celebrating, together as well as creativity and success. I am also one of three daughters so I’ve always felt drawn to groups of three women.
3. What do you look for in your authors? What advice would you have for anyone wishing to submit to 3 of Cups?
The main tenant of 3 of Cups is to help out people often excluded. There are a lot of people involved in the editorial process and our tastes are wide-ranging, so there isn’t a specific style or genre that we look for. We want to give a platform to people of colour, working class people, neurodiverse people, disabled people et cetera and so ideally an author is someone, who has previously been denied access, seeking a wider platform. One of my goals for the future is to be more active in commissioning diverse voices. Until now, we’ve very much relied on twitter and other social media platforms, but those platforms are populated by a very narrow group of people. In order to be actively diverse, we need to go out into the world and find other projects and get involved. I’m really excited about the possibilities.
4. I love your focus on inclusivity. What do you think of the current push towards inclusivity within the publishing industry?
I think the current push towards inclusivity is very cool, but until the industry starts paying interns and offering competitive wages, an imprint here and there isn’t going to solve anything long term.
5. If you had to recommend one book from 3 of Cups, which book would it be and why?
We only have one book! But On Bodies is forthcoming. We plan to launch a kickstarter for On Bodies very soon and I am so excited about the people we have in it including Rachel Heng and Kiran Millwood Hargrave.
6. What’s going on in the future? Any big plans?
We have two collaborations in the works that focus on stories rather than essays which I’m very excited about. Details to come (can’t announce anything yet, unfortunately!) Ideally, in a year or two we’ll be financially able to support individual projects, which is my longterm goal.
On Anxiety is the first release by 3 of Cups, which I was lucky enough to receive about a month ago! It is a brilliant look at anxiety through a multitude of eyes, and it is a collection that I would highly recommend that anyone pick up.

6 thoughts on “focus on: 3 of cups

  1. Lydia Tewkesbury says:

    3 of Cups sounds like an amazing project! I hope you have them back for an update so we can find out how they’re doing. They so right, when I was at uni I used to go to careers events for publishing and it always seemed like it was only made for the rich kids. These girls would come out and talk about how they worked unpaid in London for 2 years before finally getting a job and I would just be like… how?!


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