This is a guest post from Tahira Rahemtulla, a senior editor at Unambiguous Edit. Tahira graduated from City University London in 2012, with a Masters in International Publishing. She is now hosting a writing contest, That’s Write!, as a lead of Unambiguous Edit, in collaboration with TLAC Printing and Publishing, BookMachine, and Wildfire Studio.
Writers: you have 102 days!
What’s at the end of 102 days?
The close of the first That’s Write! contest submission!
What is That’s Write!?
That’s Write! is a fiction writing contest organized by four different collaborating groups from the publishing industry.
Grab your tickets for BookMachine NYC here.
1. What’s your background and how did you get involved in the publishing industry?
I’m an engineer by background, love to write and publish, and also love help other people publish. So, obviously, a natural fit for me would be to combine all three into my own company.
In a technological age we all have to think that little bit more about what we say, how we say it and where we say it. After all, what’s said on Google, stays on Google. Well mostly. That’s not to say technology is a hindrance, far from it. It has helped create a platform for voices to be heard and opened up more routes to market than ever before, across many sectors, especially within publishing.
The international publishing arena is a particularly broad, interesting yet intricate marketplace which has evolved greatly in recent times. There have long been many historic complexities to overcome and whilst some linger, technological advances have led to far more doors being opened than closed for publishers.
As someone who has spent over a decade in the trenches of the music industry, when I migrated into the book world last year I was delighted to find that everyone in publishing is spectacularly nice to one another. By contrast, rock ’n’ roll is rather less cuddly – and in fact it’s largely for this reason that I think it has prepared me well for life as an aspiring writer.
With this in mind, here are a few of the transferable lessons:
This is a guest post from Evie Prysor-Jones, Digital Publishing Executive, Blackwell’s Learning platform. (host of next month’s BookMachine London)
On New Year’s Day in 1879 Benjamin Henry Blackwell opened the doors to B.H. Blackwell’s, a 12-foot square bookshop on Broad Street in Oxford. On Tuesday 8th April 2014 Blackwell’s announced to the publishing industry that it was building a digital learning platform for students and academics, and on Monday 15th September 2014, we turned it on.
Credit where it’s due to Waterstones’ PR staff: following a potentially embarrassing incident last week, in which an American tourist had to tweet and post on Instagram for help (#nofilter) after being locked inside the chain’s Trafalgar Square branch for two hours when staff closed up without realising he was still there, they’ve spun what could be a clammy nightmare into a dream come true for a certain kind of book lover. Realising that being locked inside a bookshop for several hours isn’t necessarily so unappealing a prospect, the shop is this Friday hosting a ‘sleepover’ for ten guests and their plus ones.
If you haven’t already started affecting a veneer of cool disdain as a reaction to everyone else losing their minds, you may be mildly excited by the recent news that David Lynch and Mark Frost’s seminal TV show Twin Peaks will be returning to TV screens in 2016 for a third season, 25 years after the end of its second.
Though, predictably, Lynch has been the focal point of most coverage of the show’s return (given his far higher profile during its hiatus than that of his co-creator), Frost also played a key role in developing Twin Peaks‘ unique tone and – as if to reinforce that this isn’t just The David Lynch Show – has revealed that he is writing a novel detailing the lives of the town’s residents over the 25 years between episodes.
Host of November’s BookMachine NYC, Bree Weber, talks to speaker on the night Joe Regal, co-founder of Zola Books.
Grab your tickets for BookMachine NYC here.
1. How did your background as a literary agent lead to Zola Books?
What I saw as an agent was that with the rise of digital books, authors were stuck with a royalty rate I didn’t feel was fair – 25% of net – but the problem came not from publishers as much as a retail environment where publishers were being squeezed by an increasingly small group of increasingly powerful retailers, and the publishers were passing on that pain to the writers out of self-preservation. It seemed really clear that in order to continue to serve writers, I needed to become involved in an effort to bring more diversity to retail, so that publishers would have more outlets for their books, enabling them to continue to nurture writers struggling to start careers…or struggling to maintain careers.
November 6. London, New York, Oxford and Brighton – Meet and collaborate with the most inspiring people in the publishing industry today.
A few people have asked, what’s with 4 events? Why on the same day?
We used to stagger events throughout the year, but have now realised that there’s a certain magic around the buzz of hosting them on the same day. From hosts being able to share tips to speakers in different cities realizing that they are part of the same event – it’s definitely a better way to do it.
This time we have some truly inspirational speakers involved, and are basing the event series around just that. Inspiration.
This year’s Man Booker Prize has been awarded to Richard Flanagan for his novel The Narrow Road to the Deep North. The Australian author’s sixth book took the £50,000 award over work from three time nominee Ali Smith, past winner Howard Jacobson, Neel Mukherjee, and the prize’s first ever American nominees, Joshua Ferris and Karen Joy Fowler.