Article by Domingo Ródenas de Moya, in El Periódico
Hercules could not face his twelve works without enthusiasm, nor Herralde the creation and command of a publishing house, our Anagram, which now celebrates half a century! Enthusiasm is the engine of great companies and the airbag that prevents a breakdown when a bump comes. It can also be the crime of the unwary and the undocumented, I will not deny it. Today, a business that requires it is that of book publishing, those sumptuous objects that the more their sale and consumption decreases, the more they reveal the rise of indoctrination and vulnerability of citizens. Enthusiasm together with the three theological virtues of the publisher: faith, hope and quality.
A new or young or independent publisher must be courageous, embrace those virtues, throw all his enthusiasm into the grill and still not ensure success. If Hercules were among us, I have no doubt that his thirteenth task would be to found a publishing house. Neither do I doubt that he would do it with the purpose of emulating Jorge Herralde.
She is not Jupiter’s daughter, but Pepa Novell would deserve it. She has created from California the publishing house Magma, whose motto, “Letters in transit”, refers to the flow of lava that ends up solidifying (like literary values over time) but also to the transnational character of the project. It has come out with three novels by the Catalan Miquel Bota, the Argentinean Carlos A. Colla and the French-English Seb Doubinsky, and with two collective books of short stories: Trans stories and Xmas stories, where each author understands the “trans” (transsexual, transnational…) and the “Xmas” (Christmas, X for porn…) in his own way. He announces five more volumes of this series whose titles trigger the imagination: Cuentos Bi, Cuentos @, Cuentos Ex, Cuentos Meta and, the last one, Cuentos XXL.
Pepa Novell presented the publishing house in Barcelona, which is her home, shortly before Christmas and she did so with such an outpouring of enthusiasm, faith, hope and quality that it made her want to buy the whole catalog, now that it is still small. Pepa was a university teacher in the United States and Canada, but she decided to go out of her way to the classrooms and embark on this Herculean enterprise. The young talent, which there is, will thank her for it. And hopefully someone is celebrating in fifty years the half century of life of Magma. I drink to it.