Tag: books


Freedom, books, flowers… and a podcast

Thea Lenarduzzi is a commissioning editor at the TLS and the co-host of Freedom, Books, Flowers and the Moon, the TLS’s weekly podcast. She is also a freelance writer and, slightly sporadically, the literary editor at Five Books.

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Production Controller

Production Controller [JOB POSTING]

Quarto Publishing are looking for an enthusiastic Production person looking to take the next step in their career to join their busy Adult books team based in their Islington office. This Production Controller role is currently a fixed term contract for 9 months, working on a wide range of 4-colour non-fiction titles.

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The Quarto Group on publishing partnerships: David Inman interview

An interesting publishing industry development was announced last week, as The Quarto Group signed an agreement with Dennis Publishing Ltd to distribute the Viz Annual through their Quarto Distribution Services business. Norah Myers caught up with David Inman, Managing Director, Quarto Partners to find out more.

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events and marketing agency

Winner of #BookMachineWorks competition

Last week, amidst the buzz of face-to-face connections at The London Book Fair, a bunch of publishing people were snapping away on their phones, trying to win the #BookMachineWorks competition.

The winning photographer wins a free 12 Month BookMachine Promoted Membership, worth £90. They will also be sent a bottle of bubbly.

This year’s judge was Toby Hopkins, Business Development Manager at Getty Images. “Many great entries catching the bustle, the great creative work and the enthusiastic people at the Fair”.

First place – Victoria Brown

Second place – Holly Miller

Unsung Heroes of Publishing 2017: Sam Perkins announced as a winner

Everyone likes to win an award – it spruces up your CV by showing that you are at the top of your profession, achieving more than the list of tasks on your job spec. It illustrates that others recognize your talents and think highly enough of you to nominate you. It’s like a great big pat on the back.

This is the second annual Unsung Heroes of Publishing list, celebrating talented publishing specialists working in-house or freelance. It was launched last year by Whitefox – the largest curated network of publishing skills and specialisms in the world.

BookMachine’s very own Sam Perkins, has been listed as a 2017 winner. Sam has been managing the BookMachine site since September 2015. She also oversees the annual publication of Snapshots, a collaborative publishing project with Kingston University Publishing MA students. Sam commissions new content on a weekly basis, and also makes sure that it is distributed throughout the industry. She does this week after week, tirelessly, on top of a full-time job at Sage Publications. She is most definitely our hero!

Other winners include Pete Adlington (Canongate), Helen Coyle (Freelance), Jo Forshaw (Harper Collins), Louise Harnby (Freelance), Laura Marchant (Freelance), Emma Paterson (Coleridge &White), Rebecca Ritchie (Curtis Brown), Jill Sawyer (Freelance), Rebecca Servadio (London Literary Scouting), Martin Toseland (Freelance), Mathieu Triay (Penguin), Gemma Wain (Freelance) and Annabel Wilson (Michael Joseph).

Congratulations to everyone on this year’s selection, and particularly to our Sam.

Senior Marketing Executive [JOB POSTING]

An exciting opportunity has arisen for a marketer to join one of the UKs leading educational publishers as a Senior Marketing Executive. This fast paced, energetic environment is the ideal place for a junior marketing candidate with a minimum of 3 years’ experience to take their next step in a successful marketing career.

Based in West London, the successful candidate will report to the Marketing & Brand Manager, whilst working closely with an existing team of Marketing Executives. This role is diverse,providing the perfect opportunity to be involved in all aspects of the marketing function. You will focus on the creation and management of multiple channel marketing campaigns across the UK, using both online and direct marketing tactics, whilst analysing their effectiveness, with a view to boosting brand awareness and driving lead generation.

The ideal candidate for the Senior Marketing Executive role will be educated to degree level or CIM/CAM equivalent, with a minimum of 3 years’ experience. They will have the ability to write creative, engaging and effective content, demonstrate commercial awareness and balance a busy workload in a fast paced environment.

Click here for more details and please mention you found this on BookMachine when applying.

5 Tips for starting out as an agent

Hattie Grunewald is an agent at Blake Friedmann agency. She assists Carole Blake, handles short fiction and permissions on behalf of Blake Friedmann clients, and has been building her list since the start of 2016. Hattie is looking for women’s fiction, crime and thrillers, and realistic YA and middle-grade fiction. In non-fiction, she is looking for personal development, accessible books about politics, economics and science, and funny and clever narrative non-fiction.

1. Get out and meet writers

Agents are nothing without writers so when you’re first starting to build your list it’s important to meet as many as possible. I’ve been going to writers’ groups, holding pitching sessions and Q&As and taking every opportunity that comes my way to introduce myself to the writing community. It builds my profile, prompts hundreds of polished, high-quality submissions and broadens my sphere of contacts – and you never know when you’re meeting the next bestseller.

2. Say yes to every invitation

It’s not just important to meet writers – agenting is a relationships business and it’s vital to build contacts in publishing houses, scouting agencies and with your colleagues in agenting. Networking when you’re new to the industry and don’t know anyone can be very daunting, but whether it’s coffee with an editor or a huge summer party, it’s important not to pass up any opportunity that will broaden your network.

3. Always follow up and say thanks

It’s vital to follow up with any new contacts via email. Not only is it basic manners to thank people for a party invitation, lunch or half an hour of their time, it also confirms that they have your details and can contact you if they wish, and can reinforce a good impression of you. And it’s not just for the hosts – if you have a great discussion with someone at a party, a follow-up email can take that contact to the next level… and the next time you go to a party, you know you’ll have a friend.

4. Find your own USP

As agents we’re very used to coming up with ‘Elevator Pitches’ for our clients, but often we spend less time thinking about how to pitch ourselves. But agenting is becoming increasingly competitive, with new agents and agencies springing up every week, and it’s important to think about how to make yourself stand out, both to clients and to editors. This is about both the kind of agency you work for – and talking to your colleagues might help clarify this – and your own identity as an agent. Getting a clear idea of your tastes and preferences will not only help you locate new talent, but will also let authors know why they should come to you.

5. Look for the silver lining

When you’re first starting out as an agent, there can be a lot of disappointment – whether it’s a book that doesn’t get sold or a dream author who chooses another agent. It’s important to stay positive, confident and optimistic. You can often learn more about an editor’s tastes from a rejection than an offer, and either way you have made a new contact. Every setback teaches you lessons you can learn from next time round – and when it comes, your success will be even sweeter for it.

Startup snapshot: Read Dog

Kate Cygan and Michael Wray are an entrepreneurial minded couple with insatiable reading habits. They recently moved to Denver, CO and are working on visiting every single coffee shop the city has to offer. Lifelong creatives, they both write and paint in their free time. You can check out Read Dog online at www.readdog.com, on Instagram and on Facebook.

1) What exactly is Read Dog?

Read Dog is a monthly book curation service. We send monthly book boxes with books chosen specifically for individual readers. Every box is unique, hand-packed, and personalized.

Each of our boxes include a book (or sometimes books), notes on what’s new with Read Dog, and bookish items. Last month we included markers, crayons, a hand-bound notebook, a Read Dog coloring page, a ruler, and a ton of starburst candies. Check out our past boxes here: http://read.dog/past-boxes

In addition, we’re building a book-centered community to discuss novels, non-fiction, and short stories as well as book-relevant news. For now, we are creating a Facebook community for our Read Dog readers where we connect our readers with other bookish people, authors, and new books!

2) What problem does it solve?

We hope to build a the largest online book community in the world.

To start, we are learning what books people love, want, and re-gift to loved ones once they’re done. But the ultimate goal of Read Dog is to make sure that readers everywhere feel less lonely by connecting them with their book soulmates. Part of this goal includes making sure readers always have a book in their hand that challenges them and gives them a new perspective.

For now, we are guaranteeing an end to the re-reading conundrum where, as one of our subscribers described, you’re stuck “in a re-reading loop and unable to choose a new book.” We guarantee a new book, every month, that you’ve never read before.

3) Who is your target market?

We cater to readers everywhere. Though most of our readers have been reading since childhood and want something new, we have a couple of very young readers (one newborn even!). We have a fair number of parents buying boxes for their children and also children buying boxes for their parents which we love!

4) What results do you hope to see over the next few years?

We just quit our full-time jobs to focus on growing our business and brand, which makes this one of the most exciting and nerve-racking periods of our lives. Luckily, we are seeing results!

Over the past couple of months we’ve doubled our subscribers. Now we need to find a way to maintain our current growth while keeping in touch with the personalized aspect that makes Read Dog such an incredible service.

Our goal is to build a community of 1,000 readers by the end of 2017. Wish us luck!

5) What will be next for Read Dog?

We’re definitely going to have to be innovative in our solutions as we grow. We’re currently working on some custom “book playlists” for our readers that we know will be huge hits and will help us scale.

In the meantime, we also need to find a way to feed ourselves so may be doing some cross-promotions with local authors and bookshops. But for now, we are hyper-focused on delighting our customers.

Publishing know-how: 10 tips for interview success

Helen Youngs is a Consultant at Inspired Selection, focusing on roles in Trade publishing across digital and print. She is a vivacious bibliophile with a love of the arts and sunny people.  She is also a Publishing Ambassador for a wonderful charity called Book Aid International.

Interviews are very important, not only in making a good impression on the hiring managers, but also enabling you to have the opportunity to learn more about the company, the role and clear up any questions you may have.

Having successfully secured an interview, you want to make sure that your hard work translates into a successful interview.

Here is a 10 point action plan that we recommend you follow:

  1. Before the interview: Do your research! Research the organisation, its products and relevant news.
  2. Swat up on the interviewers. Research the people who will be interviewing you and practice saying their name
  3. Know your key strengths and weaknesses in relation to the job description.
    Practice answering competency based questions with relevant examples to use.
  4. Refer back to your cover letter, what examples did you use? Employers are most interested in your relevant and recent experience.
  5. Prepare at least three questions that you can ask at the end of the interview, use these questions to demonstrate your interest in the role, the company and its products.
  6. Plan your journey carefully to make sure you’re not late. Also, plan your outfit so that you are smartly presented. You want you appearance to display you are professional and organised.
  7. Greeting: a firm handshake and make good eye contact can instill confidence in the interview, as well as a strong good bye, even if the interview hasn’t gone as you’d planned, leave them with a positive impression
  8. During the interview: Be positive and take your time. Speak slowly, clearly and don’t ramble. Be relevant and focussed. Listen to the question and ensure your answers are upbeat and focussed on how you can add value to their organisation.
  9. After the interview: Thank them for their time and make sure to follow up to find out when you will hear feedback.
  10. Remain positive: even if you’re not sure about that particular vacancy or you haven’t been successful, a good first impression can last a lifetime and you never know when you might meet these people again…



Seeking creative candidates: Win a stand at the Frankfurt Book Fair

For the second time, the Frankfurt Book Fair is awarding its Wildcard. The candidate whose exhibition concept manages to win over the judges will be awarded the grand prize: an 8-sqm-stand at the world’s largest fair for content.

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Food writers award grants £2,000

The inaugural Jane Grigson Trust Award, designed to support new food writers is currently open for submissions, with the deadline for entries being the end of this month, 31 October 2015.

This award was created in honour of the twenty-fifth anniversary of Jane Grigson’s death, and will be made to a writer new to food writing who has already received a commission from a publishing house. In the spirit of Grigson’s writing, the award will be for a non-fiction book on food in the widest sense, from any genre – cook book, memoir, travel, history – so long as the primary subject is food.

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Self-employed in publishing

Refugee libraries in Calais and beyond

There is a common misconception that refugee camps are temporary structures, built to house a population consistently on the move. The truth of the matter is, however, that these structures can remain in place for a long time and develop a life of their own.

Just like any other town, long-term refugee camps require supplies and structures to help their inhabitants learn and develop. The ability to access books and learning materials are crucial to this, and it’s often done through libraries.

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10 things we learnt from the first Nosy Crow Illustrator Salon

BookMachine were at The Book Club last night for the first installment of the new Nosy Crow Illustrator Salons. Steven Lenton, author-illustrator of Princess Daisy and the Dragon (and the Nincompoop Knights) and illustrator of the Shifty McGifty and Slippery Sam picture books, was interviewed by Kate Wilson, Managing Director of Nosy Crow.  Their friendly repartee set the tone for the evening and was demonstrative of Nosy Crow’s ability to develop and nurture great relationships with those they work with. To round up the night, we’ve put together a list of 10 things we learnt.

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Self-employed in publishing

Balancing Act: Keeping publishing’s polarities in check

Publishing is an industry that operates between polarities, constantly engaging a series of balancing acts that define the kinds of books we sell and the profit margins we make. But are there canaries in the cage that tell us when we’re veering too far one way or the other? Is it possible to tell when the balance is out of sync before we reach the tipping point? And has the digital revolution of the past few years changed that?

Walking the tightrope

“We need writers who know the difference between production of a market commodity and the practice of an art,” said Ursula K. le Guin in July’s Portland Monthly. “Developing written material to suit sales strategies in order to maximize corporate profit… is not quite the same thing as responsible book publishing or authorship.”

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Books On The Underground

On launching Books On The Underground: Hollie Belton interview

You just finished that amazing book you’ve been reading, and you want to share it with the world? Well that’s what Hollie Belton wanted to do, so she created Books On The Underground. Here Stephanie Cox interviews Hollie about how it all works and what we should look out for next from the creative due behind this successful venture.

1. Please introduce yourself, and the others behind Books on the Underground, and give us a brief overview of your careers?

I’m Hollie, I started Books on the Underground in November 2012. I’m originally from Lincolnshire, but I moved to London 7 years ago after graduating from university. I’m a Creative at an Advertising agency, where I’ve been for the last 4 years. I met my BOTU partner, Cordelia, on Twitter. She reached out to me to to help out and now has become an integral part of the project and we’ve been doing it together ever since.

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