In a world of dizzying information, the need for reliable, edifying, and empowering nonfiction has never been greater. Stepping up to publish nonfiction books that meet the needs of today’s readers is Alcove Press.
Alcove, an imprint of publisher Crooked Lane, was established in 2020. The imprint has primarily published book club and commercial fiction. Now, Alcove is expanding to include a blend of narrative and practical nonfiction, with a focus on self-help, psychology, family and relationships, sociology, and memoir. It is also acquiring in the areas of health and wellness–both physical health and mental health; careers and lifestyle; general inspiration; pop culture and humor; history; and mind/body/spirit, though less broadly.
When shaping and defining Alcove’s nonfiction line, editor Laura Apperson and publisher Matthew Martz took stock of the interests and needs of already established Alcove readers. That meant looking at sales and rankings as well as book reviews from general readers and industry pros alike. “We dug in really, really deep. We got to see not only that our books were connecting, but, more importantly, why and how they were connecting,” Martz says. Drawing from the same topics, themes, and areas of exploration featured in their existing library, Martz and the Alcove team saw a path forward into the nonfiction space.
A few areas of interest stood out. “We saw success with core themes like family relationships, new motherhood, lifelong friendships, grief and trauma, finding true love, and navigating careers,” Apperson says. “We were quickly learning that our readers’ taste in fiction reflected what they were facing every day. There was a clear opportunity to connect with our readers by publishing exceptional nonfiction that meets them where they are and shines a light on all the different paths they could pursue.”
When it comes to nonfiction, the goal for Alcove is to publish books with organic appeal to readers that also fill gaps in the marketplace. “A given book might solve a specific problem, help explain a fascinating part of our culture, or tell an inspiring story that makes readers want to follow their dreams,” Apperson says. “Whatever its aim, we keep the book’s core audience in mind at every step.” With an eye toward these guiding principles, Apperson and Martz set out to establish their list. The result is a mix of illuminating, topic-based nonfiction and narrative nonfiction books that speaks to our shared human experiences.
“Our tagline for Alcove nonfiction is ‘stories to live by,’ ” Apperson says. “Our nonfiction informs, inspires, and engages readers to be their best selves in every aspect of their lives.”
To that end, Alcove is seeking both established and debut authors to tell their stories and share their expertise. “Authors will find that our team is enthusiastic and passionate about the work we do,” Apperson says. “We are a creative team that champions collaboration and innovation.”
Three upcoming titles to be published in 2024 embody Alcove’s mission. Author Kara Alaimo’s Over the Influence: Why Social Media Is Toxic for Women and Girls—And How We Can Take It Back is an empowering indictment of social media and its damaging impact on girls, teens, and women. In The Laughter Effect: How to Build Joy, Resilience, and Positivity in Your Life by Ros Ben-Moshe, the author urges readers to embrace the healing and transforming power of laughter.
How Children Grieve: What Adults Miss, and What They Can Do to Help by Corinne Masur is a guidebook for parents and other caregivers that will help them recognize and understand how grief manifests in children, at every stage of their development. “It’s the first book to be published in many years that gives caregivers the crucial information they need to help children mourning after loss,” Apperson says. “It’s important work that will make a real difference in the lives of children and the adults who care for them.”
These inaugural titles mark a bright beginning for Alcove’s nonfiction line. Going forward, Alcove will continue to meet the diverse needs of readers. “We are actively acquiring, and we’re especially looking for titles to add to our fall 2024 and spring 2025 lists,” Apperson says. “The authors who join us will be key to an exciting period of growth, and will help set the course for years to come.”