Betimes Books is the first not-for-profit literary press founded in Dublin, a UNESCO City of Literature. We endeavour to support visionary literary writing and the struggle that is the making of great literature.

In today’s mercantile world, books and writers are increasingly reduced to their marketplace value, and profitability trumps artistic worth. By choosing a not-for-profit publishing model, we strive to act as custodians of great works of literature, in the same way as museums curate, preserve and make available artifacts for their intrinsic and cultural value, regardless of their commercial value.

Literary philanthropy has always sought to make modernity hospitable for writers and nurture original literary talent without overbearing financial pressure, thus challenging free-market fundamentalism. While not seeking profits for the press, we are dedicated to helping our authors succeed and creating conditions in which they can continue to create, protected from the vagaries of the marketplace.

One of the aims in the Strategic Plan for Dublin UNESCO City of Literature is to “advocate strongly on the power of words and the role of reading, writing and storytelling”. By publishing diverse and innovative literary fiction, offering quality over quantity, and championing writers regardless of sales, we carry the torch that has produced great works of arts in the past under “patronage” or similar models: from William Shakespeare to James Joyce and many other major literary voices.

Our values

  • Excellence in publication programme and editorial standards
  • Discovery and promotion of literary talent
  • Generosity with emerging literary talent, through free mentoring and editorial support from early manuscript draft to publication
  • Dedication to literary values and free thinking
  • Conservation of culturally and socially important works of literature by keeping them in print and alive

Betimes Books is a Company Limited by Guarantee. Incorporation N° 651805

Board of Directors: Caoimhe Fox, Tanja Slijepčević, Maria Tirelli. Secretary: Svetlana Pironko

Publisher: Svetlana Pironko


What is the meaning of “betimes” and why Betimes Books? “Betimes” means “before its time” and, besides the meaning and the obvious attraction of the word, we love this line from Shakespeare’s Hamlet, (Act 5, scene 2): “We defy augury. There’s a special providence in the fall of a sparrow. If it be now, ’tis not to come. If it be not to come, it will be now. If it be not now, yet it will come—the readiness is all. Since no man of aught he leaves knows, what is ’t to leave betimes? Let be.”