Arrhythmia – a new Book Works open submission series guest-edited by Katrina Palmer


Guest-edited by artist Katrina Palmer, Arrhythmia is a new series that offers an opportunity for artists and writers whose work explores ideas of being out of joint with the predominant social order, whether through disrupted trajectories, physical displacement, or political dissonance. We are particularly interested in experimental work that articulates a discontinuous sense of identity, and writing, or the combination of writing and images in which the rhythm of the text is self-consciously questioned.

Open Submission

Three proposals will be selected for publication from this open submission. Arrhythmia follows previous series commissioned from open call, including: Semina, G.S.O.H The Rest is Dark, The Rest is Dark, Common Objectives, Contact and our most recent open submissions series, Interstices, guest edited by Bridget Penney.

We want to develop a project with you and are not looking for completed works in search of distribution. We are interested in ideas that can be shared and realised through our editorial process, or works already in progress that would benefit from development through our editorial and publishing process. We would encourage projects that also have the potential to disseminate beyond the printed page – as performance, spoken word, sound or digital images, especially where such possibilities are integral to the process of developing the text.

Work can be submitted from UK and internationally based individuals, groups or collectives, in English language only. We are interested in submissions from artists and writers often unrecognised by mainstream institutions, and in particular those from the African Diaspora, liberation groups or whose minority identity has historically marginalised them.


Book Works will offer a fee to the three commissioned artists or writers of £1,250. There will also be a small budget allocated for expenses and travel.


Submissions must be sent via email to Lizzie Homersham by midnight (GMT) on 1 November 2021, and include:  

  • Outline of your proposal (500 words)
  • Sample of proposed work (1,500-2,500 words)
  • CV (max 2 pages).  Please include the following contact details at the top of the first page: postal address, email address, contact telephone number/skype contact.
  • A completed Equal Opportunities form (download PDF here).


Katrina Palmer and Book Works will draw up a shortlist from this open call, and selected artists and writers will be contacted. We may need to talk to those selected about their proposed project or request additional information, and all shortlisted artists/writers will receive feedback. The successful commissions will be announced in January 2022.


Katrina Palmer is an artist based in London. She is Associate Professor of Fine Art at the Ruskin, University of Oxford. In 2007 The Dark Object was selected from open submission as part of the Semina series, guest edited by Stewart Home and published by Book Works. Other projects with Book Works include: ‘Dr Sinclair’s Drawer’, an exhibition produced by Book Works and Flat Time House (2013), The Fabricators Tale (2014), and End Matter, co-published with Artangel (2015). Her solo exhibitions include: Yorkshire Sculpture Park (2018), Brotherton Library, University of Leeds (2017), Henry Moore Institute, Leeds (2015) and Artangel (2015). From 22 May to 14 November 2021, two new outdoor artworks, HELLO and RETREAT can be seen in Southend-on-Sea.

Editorial and Design

Book Works will coordinate all aspects of editing and production, and fully involved in decisions involving, design, budget, promotion and distribution of the book. Commissions will be edited by Katrina Palmer and Book Works, as a co-operative process with the aim of producing projects sympathetic to the ambitions of the series. The editors would expect to work closely with the commissioned artist/author/collective on shaping the project and on any redrafts and revisions. You will be consulted at each stage of the process and expected to help take decisions about the way in which the work is presented. You will also be asked to work to deadlines and attend meetings as agreed, and must be willing to take some active part in the launch/promotion of the book.

Design will be co-ordinated by Book Works, and we expect to work with a newly commissioned designer on the series. The print-run will be dependent on the project, and up to 1,000 copies in any format. 

Equal Opportunities

Book Works is committed to making a positive impact to address inequality, discrimination and through our work, employment and audience engagement, pursue a programme that foregrounds social justice in the arts. We celebrate and value equality and diversity in all aspects of our work, and are committed to providing an inclusive and supportive environment for all our artists, staff, trustees, and various user groups, through a shared, reflective and open process. Our programme reflects our desire to work with artists and writers that are often unrecognised by mainstream institutions, or those from liberation groups or whose minority identity has historically marginalised them.

As part of its core commitment to celebrating and valuing equality and diversity and to providing an inclusive and supportive environment, and to address injustice Book Works commits itself to:

– Embrace equality and diversity and promoting opportunities for good relations in all areas of its activities.

– Prevent any kind of discrimination, including any form of harassment in relation to age, disability, gender, marriage and civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity, race (including colour, nationality, ethnic or national origins), religion or beliefs, sex and sexual orientation or socio-economic background.

– Prevent bullying, harassment, unlawful discrimination and victimisation, and to ensure that all trustees, staff, artists and user groups, and public are treated fairly and with respect.

We are committed to deliver these aims through an equitable process of reasonable adjustment, transparency, access, training and fair representation.

Arrhythmia – a new Book Works open submission series guest-edited by Katrina Palmer; ; 2021; | Commission: Arrhythmia Editor: Palmer, Katrina; | Publisher: Book Works: | Downloads: Shop ()