9 fun facts about us

1. Established in Te Whanganui-a-Tara Wellington in 2005, Lawrence & Gibson is a collective of writers that publishes literary fiction skewered towards the morose, satirical, verbose and thoughtful.

2. We print, bind and guillotine our books ourselves... as Brannavan recently mused, they won't sit neatly on your shelf. Except, when the books are really long, then we get a local printer to do it and hope to hell that Creative NZ will subsidise it (which they have for quite a few of our recent books).
3. Until a while ago we used the slogan, "made from local and imported ingredients". We're not sure why that got dropped. [2022 update: I think I just got bored of being cutesy].
4. For six glorious months in 2008 Richard Meros lived off the proceeds of the award-winning theatrical adaptation of On the conditions and possibilities of Helen Clark taking me as her Young Lover. 
5. OTCAPOHCTMAHYL remains our best-selling book. Sprigs is our new best-selling book of all time. $30 Meat Pack or Dating Westerners: Tips for the New Rich of the Developing World might be our least selling, but they are still very good.
6. All of our books are printed on 100% recycled post-consumer paper. Usually it's on 100gsm, but sometimes 80gsm for a bigger book, or 115gsm for a smaller one.
7. We probably don't publish international authors anymore, but it was a damn pleasure to release AD Jameson and Ulrich Haarburste's novels in our first years.

8. SEX SHOCK SCANDAL!!! None of the collective authors have dated one another (at least that I'm aware). What sort of collective is this, even? (Answer: a producer co-operative based on a project-by-project funding model and minimal overheads).
9. Oh, a question from the audience. Weird, but OK: "Hey, if/when you have a moment, can you expand for me what it's meant by "Lawrence and Gibson is a collective? I'm just curious."

Murdoch: "Sure thing. Though perhaps the most important, easy part is that we're not-for-profit, which means a lot of the questions around distribution of money are moot — the members have never taken money out of the organisation, though authors get paid a royalty of half the profits from each book. That given, we're a workers collective that has strong voluntary-solidarity basis. What all that means is that we only put out a couple of books a year and there is no profit in it, nor wages.

So that being given the simplest way to understand it as a project-by-project co-operative with the author contributing the labour of writing and participating in the binding, marketing and distribution of the books and their share of the profit is half, once profit is reached. Which it mostly is.
The other 50% goes to the maintenance of the collective, including promotion of authors, covering costs of things that enhance the collective's profile, and ensuring there is enough money around the print a next couple of batches of books if one really flops. It's also worth looking at the bank account: we share the balance with other authors who contribute above and beyond their own book to another project.
Which books we publish is also based on the collective will — though this doesn't mean that we all have to agree, it's mostly that if a person wants a book to come out, and the others agree it fit the kaupapa, then that person has a responsibility to lead the production of the book.
It all makes sense because it is not a source of income for anyone but the author, though all members are authors. Everyone has some other form of income because writing novels is not a profitable way to survive in this country except for the independently wealthy, those with a partner who supports them, or the odd acclaimed person."