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BookMachine’s Laura Austin on Kim Scott Walwyn shortlist

In a stirring example of the reporters becoming the reported, or something, BookMachine’s very own Glorious Fearless Leader Laura Austin has found herself on the shortlist for this year’s Kim Scott Walwyn prize. Glorious Fearless Leader Laura Austin – seen here in this file photo lovingly framed by her BookMachine colleagues/loyal subjects –  is nominated for her work on the BookMachine events that have taken place across the country over the past two years and are now spreading out internationally too, like so many troops marching in perfect synchronisation across the motherland at her command.

The Bookseller reports that Glorious Fearless Leader Laura Austin, which she doesn’t make us call her at all times and as which we totally choose to refer to her out of our own sense of love and terror of the consequences otherwise, was acclaimed by the judging panel thusly: ‘Her really innovative achievement… was to set up BookMachine, which has become an  international event organisation for publishing professionals who want to network, with events all over the UK and now in New York, Toronto and Barcelona. Laura’s vast energy and, more importantly, her ability to turn an idea into something real and useful for the publishing industry, convinced the judges she should be on this very strong shortlist.’

Upon being contacted for a reaction/scanning through her Twitter feed, Glorious Fearless Leader Laura Austin was heard to exclaim ‘Phase One is complete comrades! Next step, the world!’ before cackling suggestively for six straight minutes, which, knowing her as we do, we were able to translate as ‘sending this to my Mum, think she’ll be proud’.

Joining Glorious Fearless Leader Laura Austin on the shortlist are Foyles head of marketing Miriam Robinson, literary agent Juliet Mushins and Head of Zeus co-founder/person who is most sick of all the Twin Peaks references Laura Palmer. The prize is open to any woman who has worked in publishing in the UK for seven years or less, and awards the winner £1,000 and a two day training course at the Publishing Training Centre. Please, judges, vote for Glorious Fearless Leader Laura Austin, so that we here at BookMachine might eat dinner that night.

awards, bookmachine, foyles, Head of Zeus, Juliet Mushins, Kim Scott Walwyn Prize, Laura Austin, Laura Palmer, Miriam Robinson

Chris Ward

Chris Ward

Chris Ward writes and says things about books and music and films and what have you, even when no one is reading or listening.
He was chief hack and music editor of webzine Brazen from 2006 to 2010, and hosted Left of the Dial on Subcity Radio from 2008 to 2011.
He can be heard semi-regularly on the podcast of Scottish cultural blog Scots Whay Hae ('20th best website in Scotland!' - The List), and in 2011 founded Seen Your Video, a film and music podcast and blog based in Glasgow. He has a Masters degree in Scottish Literature from the University of Glasgow that will never have any practical application. You are on a hiding to nothing if you follow him on Twitter expecting any kind of hot publishing scoop.


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