Category: Articles

MasterPlan screen shot showing the manifesto covers

88 mentions of Brexit. The election manifestos are published.

We are now halfway though the six-week build-up before the 2019 UK General Election and this is the week that all the major political parties have published their manifestos.

In the spirit of free speech I have rounded them all up and placed them all online here using MasterPlan, so they can be simultaneously searched and direct links to any of the good, bad or contentious promises can be easily shared in online rants or pledges of allegiance.

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FutureBook Innovation panel

Using smart thinking to build a better tomorrow: FutureBook Live 2019

Monday’s FutureBook Live conference, hosted by The Bookseller, felt deeply grounded in realistic, achievable innovations; actions we can embed in our daily lives to bring about real change.

The focus of the day was less about VR headsets and more about changing the ways we think: questions such as how we interpret our marketing data, who we welcome into our industry and where we go to meet our readers. Maybe the most important innovations we make today are grounded in the way we approach our vocation as publishers. If we want to build a better world, we need to do more than simply introduce a new types of technology: we need to develop an innovative mindset that looks at all aspects of our work. As FutureBook’s Molly Flatt said in her introduction, what we do as publishers matters.

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Nick Coveney

Self-publishing audiobooks with Kobo Writing Life: Interview with Nick Coveney

Before we start talking about audiobooks, can you give us a quick intro to Kobo Writing Life?

Launched in 2012, Kobo Writing Life is a global DIY publishing platform that empowers authors to take their publishing career into their own hands. With Kobo Writing Life, you own your rights, set your prices and can distribute your books in any country you choose. We don’t ask for any exclusivity, so you are free to publish wherever else you please. We are a small team of industry experts with a big vision and an enormous passion for books, we are proud of our reputation as the most author-friendly platform out there.

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Damian Gibbs

The Publishing Machine: How automation makes space for creativity

It is a curious thing, publishing books. I’ve never been sure if it is more art or science; either way, there is no doubt that both are involved, and one without the other amounts to naught.

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Bec Evans - by Sarah Mason Photography

Get inspired to be more innovative, with the FutureBook BookTech awards

We’re told that publishing should be more innovative. We get it – innovation will help build a robust industry for the future. But where do we start as individuals who already have more than enough to do? We’re too busy commissioning, editing, designing, promoting and selling books to make time for breakthrough thinking.

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Virtual Yoga Summit - video recording in progress

Online marketing case study: Singing Dragon’s Virtual Yoga Summit

Vera Sugar is a marketing executive at Singing Dragon (an imprint of Jessica Kingsley Publishers), publishers of authoritative books on complementary health, yoga and yoga therapy, Chinese medicine and more. She is also co-chair of the PAW (Planet + People + Animal Welfare) working group at Hachette.

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Aki Schilz

Building Skills and Confidence in Editing: How skills training programmes can support a more diverse editorial workforce

In 2018, The Literary Consultancy offered a pilot initiative for aspiring editors, with three short seminars giving an introduction to the basics of copy-editing, proofreading and substantive editing. Within the first two days, we had over 100 expressions of interest: clearly, the demand for this kind of training is there.

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Design Unplugged panel

Can design thinking transform your publishing strategy?

Wednesday 13 November saw another packed house at the Century Club in London, for the last BookMachine Unplugged event of 2019. Hosted by BookMachine Editorial Board member Sophie O’Rourke (Managing Director, EMC Design), the evening gave us a chance to focus on design in its broadest form: not just about the visual aspects of book design, but about design thinking as a concept. Sophie’s panellists were Belinda Abbott (Head of Faculty, Design Thinkers Academy), Dean Johnson (Design, Technology and Innovation Consultant at activrightbrain), and Donna Payne (Creative Director at Faber & Faber).

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Book, mug and reading glasses on a bed

What’s the point of a blog tour?

Claire Maxwell is a freelance publicist, former journalist and a member of BookMachine Works. She’s worked in the communications department of various publishing companies in the UK including Canongate Books and Icon Books, managing huge campaigns and securing national and regional publicity for a number of authors.

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Helen Harradine

What I have learnt from working in recruitment for half a decade

Helen Harradine is well known to many of our readers as a regular attendee of BookMachine events. Helen is celebrating her fifth workiversary with Inspired Selection this week! Here are five key lessons she has learnt from working in hashtag#recruitment for half a decade.

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Katie Cotton

The making of Greta and the Giants: going green in the children’s book industry

When the incredible text of Greta and the Giants landed on our desks, we knew that it wasn’t just an opportunity to publish a great book. It was an opportunity to look at how we publish books in general. Was there a way that we could do business (and still, let’s be honest, make money) but also be kinder to the environment?

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Anna Cunnane

Why publishing people make great coders

“Programming is like writing a book… except when you miss a single comma on page 126, the whole thing makes no sense” – Programmer humour

Many talented publishers think that they could never learn to code. They might think that it is too technical or too dry. They might assume that their proficiency with language has no application to computers. But programmers and publishing people have more in common than you might think. Programmers and writers both need to distill complex problems into clear, readable and actionable messages. Coding can be as aesthetically driven as any other art form and like writers the best programmers have technical ability and creative flair. So, what are some of the most common ways that coding overlaps with publishing?

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Melody Dawes

Keeping publishing flexible through outsourcing: interview with Just Content

Melody Dawes is the Managing Director of Just Content. With 20 years’ experience in educational and academic publishing, she set up Just Content in 2013, offering publishers and content providers an on-demand solution for outsourcing at scale. Here we interview Melody about her business.

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