Collaboration is one of the most important parts of remaining viable in business, regardless of what your industry is. Creativity and people power is what leads to innovation, and working together is part of running a company that continues to achieve its goals. Today’s tools for collaboration are advancing steadily and more accessible than ever before. Video conferencing is a great way to ensure that your team, whether scattered around the world or joining a meeting from their home office, maximizes their collaborative brainpower.
The problem today is that people have no time to read. We also spend more and more time on our phones for entertainment, news, emails, banking – many things that we used to do on a personal computer or offline. It’s easier to read on our phones because everything is in one place; often we’re catching ten minutes on the tube or reading just before we go to bed. Subscription is also becoming a new norm for content streaming, with Spotify and Netflix bringing music and films to people in new ways. Books are no exception, and Bookmate is part of the new wave of services providing ebook streaming via a fantastically designed mobile application. For no more than the price of a single paperback, users can access a library of 500,000 ebooks via a library on mobile, tablet and web that allows them to read online and offline.
On Bookmate people come for the ebooks but stay for the social experience – you can create a profile and share your favourite books with your friends. We’re really excited to be partnering with BookMachine, and to mark our collaboration BookMachine has created an incredibly useful bookshelf of publishing-related books: https://bookmate.com/
As Publisher Relations Executive (Trade / International) at The Publishers Association, Seonaid MacLeod is an expert at advising on a wide range of publishing industry issues. Ahead of ‘Transferable skills in creative industries‘ on 19th August, we asked Seonaid a few questions.
1. You work with publishers across the industry. In which areas do you think publishers are looking for skills?
Publishers are incredibly aware of the need for a diverse workforce in all aspects of the business. This diversity can be based on demographic, and it can be based on skills. Particularly in the educational sector, the skills needed to create enhanced learning materials are imperative. Beyond that, all publishers expect applicants to be at least conversant in digital skills, aware of what’s going on in the industry and beyond, and to have a real interest in the future of publishing. An English degree should no longer be seen as the only relevant qualification for the job.
Mike Shatzkin has been in publishing since 1962. Since 1979, Mike has been an independent consultant (The Idea Logical Company) with clients that have included most major publishers in the US and UK, retailers including Barnes & Noble and Borders, wholesalers including Ingram, and a host of tech startups. He has partnerships with Michael Cader in a conference business (Publishers Launch Conferences) and with Peter McCarthy in a digital marketing business (Logical Marketing Agency). You can follow him on Twitter @MikeShatzkin.
A range of useful options is available to any author as they consider their online presences. All can be useful to any author but their own website is an essential component of that. It’s an anchor and it is the only web presence the author knows s/he will always control.
An author’s objectives for a website should be to:
- Make it crystal clear to search engines who the author is and for what they are an authority.
- Give the author a platform that can be used for many things: blogging, posting parts of books or works-in-progress, and gathering email addresses.
- Give fans of the author a sensible place to link to an author’s content and biography that is not called Amazon.com.
- Collect data that is independent of any specific book’s sales that can help an author know how s/he is doing in the digital world.
In addition to a web site, which is real estate an author totally controls and is the most important tool in an author’s kit to get new followers through search, an author can do him or herself some good by going where fans could be.
This is a guest post from Jasmin Kirkbride. Jasmin is a regular blogger for BookMachine and Editorial Assistant at Periscope Books (part of Garnet Publishing). She is also a published author and you can find her on Twitter @jasminkirkbride
Collaboration is the rage at the moment, yet the misleadingly straightforward word can hide a minefield of possible pitfalls: how do you reach out to others to start collaborating? And once you’ve formed a partnership, how do you maintain your needs and vision whilst still allowing for those of others? Collaboration can be pretty scary if you haven’t tried it before and if you’ve had a bad experience, it can be even more intimidating.
So what’s the answer? According to workshop leader Jamie Catto, the key is to think bananas!
Lisa Edwards runs her own independent publishing consultancy, Redwood Tree Publishing. She has twenty years’ experience in the publishing industry, primarily in children’s books, where she has managed brands such as Horrible Histories, The Golden Compass, The Hunger Games, Tom Gates and Stick Man. She is currently developing and leading a training course for trade commissioning editors at The Publishing Training Centre.
As the one-year anniversary of my blog hoves into view, I’ve realised that what I’ve been doing all this time is publishing myself.
I haven’t been self-publishing, as to me that means something different – the act of distributing a single novel, short story or work of non fiction online is very different to publishing a series of micro-works via a website.
Matthew Selwyn is an author, blogger, student, and librarian. Here Stephanie Cox interviews him about his career and his popular blog, Bibliofreak. You can follow Matthew on Twitter @thebibliofreak
1. Please introduce yourself and give me an overview of your career so far.
Hi, I’m Matthew Selwyn – I’ve been writing a book blog – www.bibliofreak.net – for around four years now, which I set up with the intention of forcing me to think more critically about books I had read and also to get me into the habit of writing regularly. I suppose it has succeeded on that score, as after writing the blog for a couple of years I started work on my first novel (****, or, The Anatomy of Melancholy). This was released late-2014, and I’m currently finishing the first draft of my second novel, so I’ve certainly begun to get the hang of writing regularly! I’m also lucky enough to work in a great academic library, which is somewhere I feel completely at home.
This is a guest blog post from Stephanie Cox, BookMachine contributor, events organiser for SYP North, Publishing Editor at Emerald Group Publishing and blogger at Words are my craft.
Last month I attended a fully-booked author event at Hull Central Library, featuring Matt Haig, author of numerous bestsellers, including The Humans and Reasons To Stay Alive (and who, by the way, is a fellow Hull University alumn and I had no idea!).
This is a guest post from Alison Jones. Alison is a business and executive coach, content consultant and publisher. After a 23-year career in trade and scholarly publishing working with major publishers such as Oxford University Press and Macmillan, during which she pioneered digital publishing, she set up Alison Jones Business Services and the Practical Inspiration Publishing imprint in 2014.
Earlier this year I gave a talk on agile for publishers and was astonished by how few people in the room had experience of agile development or even knew what it was.
The OED defines agile as ‘a method of project management, used especially for software development, that is characterized by the division of tasks into short phases of work and frequent reassessment and adaptation of plans.’
Childish, too niche, corrupting our youth – the criticism against comic books has taken on many forms. But despite this, comic books are one of the few literary genres which have seen a rise in sales figures following the recession. At BookMachine’s latest event, Tim Pilcher walked us through the vindication of comic books, and why publishers need to join in on the fun.
On Tuesday evening, Phoenix Artist Club was packed to the brim with publishing professionals eager to hear what Humanoid’s comic book guru Tim Pilcher had to say about the rise and redemption of comic books.