Tag: Bookswarm

website

Commissioning an effective publisher website

Simon Appleby is the Managing Director of Bookswarm, the only digital agency in the UK dedicated to delivering projects for publishers, authors and others in the world of books.

I’ve been working on websites for publishers since 2007, and I’ve delivered projects for publishing houses large and small. I’ve learned a lot along the way, and I can safely say that the most important decisions for publishers all need to be made long before any work is done on design or development.

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Story time for digital publishers

This a guest post from Simon Appleby, who runs Bookswarm, a digital agency specialising in delivering projects for authors, agents and publishers. Simon has 15 years’ experience of scoping, pitching, architecting and delivering digital projects. He has worked for a number of digital agencies, and more recently has worked client-side at Octopus Publishing Group (a division of Hachette UK), where he ran the e-book conversion programme and worked on a number of iPhone and iPad apps. His first course at the Publishing Training Centre runs at the start of October with co-tutor Zelda Rhiando.
 

Are you sitting comfortably? Then I’ll begin…

Human beings love stories. Narrative is central to how we make sense of the world around us. It explains religions, superstition, myths and legends, and it’s core to our culture. In fact, in one of my favourite popular science books, The Science of Discworld II: The Globe, the authors, Terry Pratchett, Ian Stewart and Jack Cohen, devote themselves to the importance of narrative (or narrativium, as they would have it) to the world, and suggest that instead of Homo Sapiens, a better name for the human species would be Pans Narrans – the Storytelling Ape.

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The literary critic: an endangered species?

This a guest post from Simon Appleby, who runs Bookswarm, a digital agency specialising in work for authors, agents and publishers – services including e-book design, website and blog design, author videos and more. He’s also a director of AMS Digital Publishing, which runs a number of online marketing channels for publishers, including Bookhugger.co.uk and Bookdiva.co.uk, and operates the Real Readers review generation service. He’s a hands-on computer geek and a prolific reader and reviewer of books via the blog that he founded in 2008, Bookgeeks.co.uk.
 

Everyone’s a critic

The web, and not least Amazon’s customer review functionality, has been blamed for the demise (or at least the endangered species status) of the professional literary critic. There’s not doubt that the amount of space in the national press given over to books is less than ever, and the number of literary editors has diminished too. Needless to say, the whole newspaper market is changing and shrinking, thanks to this Internet thingummy. So, Bookmachiners, I ask you – is this such a bad thing?

I have a weird dual perspective on this issue…

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