Mobile Reading

Mobile Reading: Why it Matters

This is a guest blog post by Nancy Brown. Nancy is currently managing Worldreader’s content acquisition in Southeast Asia by working with publishers and authors who are interested in extending their reach to global audiences. 

Last April, UNESCO released its study Reading in the Mobile Era. The study looked at the reading habits and preferences of 4,000 Worldreader Mobile users in emerging markets (Ethiopia, Ghana, India, Kenya, Nigeria, Pakistan and Zimbabwe). The unequivocal conclusion: people are in fact reading on their mobile phones.

Why does this matter?

The increasing ubiquity of mobile technology translates as access for readers and new markets for publishers.

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Publishing Masters

Four of the many things I learned while doing a Publishing Masters

This is a guest post from Sarah Blake. Sarah is a part-time librarian and current student on the Publishing Masters at City University.

Relating all the things I’ve learned on this course would take a long time, so for now I’ll elaborate on some of the most pertinent points that have cropped up over the year:

1. We don’t need no editorial! (Hear me out.)

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Copywrite

All authors need the right representation

This is a guest post from Tom Chalmers, Managing Director at IPR License.

Authors are more committed to their agent than to their publisher. That is according to early results from the “Do You Love Your Publisher?” survey for traditionally published authors co-produced by Jane Friedman in the States and Harry Bingham in the UK. However, when asked about the possibility of self-publishing, only a minority of authors were reported to be excited at the prospect, with the majority (75 per cent), either neutral or horrified at the thought of taking control.

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WYSIWYG

Corporate Social Responsibility: Not just for hippies

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

(for further discussion on how CSR adds value to your business, you might like to attend the OPG Summer Conference in Oxford)

Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) has become an increasingly important part of corporate identities during the last decade. Environmental and social concerns have become core, not just to forerunners such as The Body Shop and Timberland, but even huge corporations such as Starbucks, Unilever, and Walt Disney. The question remains, however: will a commitment to CSR add value to your business as a Publisher?

Defining CSR

In its simplest form, CSR focuses on a triple bottom line of social, environmental and financial responsibility. In an increasing number of countries there are laws stating that, to a greater or lesser degree, each business should be responsible for its actions. Many businesses are choosing to go beyond simple compliance, though, and are creating CSR guidelines and commitments of their own.

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Copywrite

Technology still needs an audience

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.

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Chris

3 lessons writers can learn from the music industry

This is a guest blog from Christopher Russell, author of Mockstars, a music novel inspired by his international tour diaries for rock/pop band The Lightyears.

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:

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Off the shelf and behind the cupboard…

If it wasn’t enough trying to write a book and/or getting it onto peoples bookshelves, now we’re being told how we might need to cull certain titles from such shelves, especially if we’re looking to sell our home.

According to TV homes expert Sarah Beeny, homeowners trying to sell their property should hide self-help manuals and novels like 50 Shades of Grey and display cookery books and Dickens instead.

In an article in the Telegraphy she comments that booklovers with teeming shelves should consider packing the majority away and only leave out the best titles. Hardback classics such as Dickens, Austen and Bronte were said to look particularly good on shelves and add character to a home.

The article also concluded that children’s books also create a good impression of a family home but only if they stacked neatly on shelves rather than left lying around on the floor or surfaces. But titles detailing unusual hobbies like taxidermy or witchcraft may deter visitors, as would self-help books and risqué titles that might hint at the owners’ private interests.

Conversely local history and large nature books or even picture led tomes about fashion or music were said to look good on a coffee table and be useful talking points for visitors. Beeny went on to add that books are an unsung hero of home décor and also say a massive amount about you and the home they sit in.

So the question is what do the books you own, write or publish really say about you? If you’re a writer would you rather have a critically acclaimed piece of work that only appealed to a niche audience or a more commercially focused book largely panned by the critics but then went on to sell by the bucket-load all over the world? The same question could be asked of publishers; although I’m pretty sure I know what the answer might be. And for book buyers, what are the guilty secrets from your bookshelves? What might you want to hide, or even flaunt if your house was on the market, if anything?

The fact is that the book market, quite rightly in my opinion, remains hugely subjective and personal. Who’s to say what you should and shouldn’t be ashamed of? Then again I’m not trying to sell a house.  There’s always room to explore new genres, new territories and new authors whether writing, reading or publishing so let’s all champion the books we love and don’t forget to tell your friends, neighbors, potential buyers about them. The book industry needs all the help it can get.

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