The operations of Quaker publishing house Inner Light Books will be carried on by Barclay Press following the retirement of publisher Charles Martin in July.
Martin published the first Inner Light Books title in San Francisco, Calif., in 2009 and has published 23 books since “by and about Quakers . . . that examine Quaker values.”
Martin believes Barclay Press will make a good home for Inner Light Books, where it will continue as a separate imprint. “I think the transition will be smooth. I hope that people will continue buying Inner Light titles and supporting Barclay Press because it is important to have . . . an independent Quaker publisher in the world and that’s what they are.”
Barclay Press is also pleased to take on Inner Light Books. “They have this amazing catalog of really useful Quaker resources,” says Eric Muhr, publisher for Barclay Press, “especially Marcel Martin’s recent study guide and her book [Our Life Is Love] that preceded it. But there are a number of other titles as well that will probably continue to hold their value—and not just for Quaker readers—for decades to come.
“Barclay Press’s mission as a nonprofit is to make sure that Friends’ . . . printed materials are made available as resources to whoever needs them,” Muhr continues. “Our mission is to serve as a kind of Quaker seed vault, that if there is a valuable resource out there and if that is in danger of disappearing, part of our mission involves figuring out a way to keep it available for people as long as it has value, for as long as it’s useful. Taking on Inner Light Books is not about expanding Barclay Press. It’s about making sure that these books remain in distribution and available to small groups, to individuals, to monthly meetings, to yearly meetings.”
Barclay Press serves Friends through the publication of books, pamphlets, curriculum, and periodicals. Although it began in 1959 as the press for Oregon Yearly Meeting (now Northwest Yearly Meeting), Barclay Press is currently an independent nonprofit organization, based in Newberg, Ore., and governed by a board of directors.