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The last time I talked with Dalkey Archive Press founder John O’Brien, he had shut down the press’s Chicago office and given up on our fair city as a hub for anything literary.
That was a decade ago. Since then Dalkey—which started in Elmwood Park and is now based at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign—has opened outposts in the ostensibly more literature-friendly confines of London and Dublin. A quirky, donor-supported nonprofit, it publishes about 50 books a year, mostly what O’Brien has described as “subversive” (read “experimental”) fiction, about half of them translations.
It’s been famous in a fairly narrow niche.
Until last week, when O’Brien posted an ad on the Dalkey website for a couple London-based interns. O’Brien made it clear that he’s looking only for candidates who “do not have any other commitments (personal or professional)” and “will do whatever is required of them to make the press succeed.”