Former leading New Zealand publisher and bookseller, and widely experienced judge of both the Commonwealth Writers Prize and the Montana New Zealand Book Awards, talks about what he is currently reading, what impresses him and what doesn't, along with chat about the international English language book scene, and links to sites of interest to booklovers.
Amazon's position in the market is damaging progress in the
book trade, according to the president of the Booksellers Association, Tim
Walker. Speaking on a panel about publishing and technology at the
Nielsen BookInsights conference yesterday (25th March), Walker said that
Amazon's dominance of the e-book market was having a negative impact on
Waterstones is to appoint Hobbycraft's Ed Armitage to head up
its e-commerce operation. Armitage, currently head of multichannel at craft and gift
retailer Hobbycraft, will take up his position as Waterstones E-Commerce
Director from May. Armitage replaces Colm McCrory, former head of e-commerce and
digital at Waterstones, who left the retailer last month after working on
the relaunch of the Waterstones website, which went live in February.
Martyn Goff, who served as administrator of the Booker Prize
Foundation for more than three decades and “helped shape the prize into the
literary force it is today”, has died. Goff died yesterday (25th March) aged 91 after a long period
of ill health, said the Booker Prize Foundation. He served as administrator of the prize from 1970 to 2006,
gaining the nickname Mr Booker, and was succeeded by Ion Trewin. Jonathan Taylor, chair of the Booker Prize Foundation, said:
“Martyn was a wonderful advocate and administrator of the prize for so many
Penguin Random House UK has created and expanded a number of
roles in its strategy, commercial and consumer and digital teams, ahead of
the departure of commercial director Nigel Waters. Waters, who has been at PRH UK for 21 years, is to leave the
business at Easter.
Olympic cyclist Sir Chris Hoy is writing a children’s series
about a boy and his bike with author Joanna Nadin.
The Flying Fergus series is about eight-year-old Fergus, who desperately
wants a bike for his ninth birthday. The bike he wants is too expensive so
he inherits his Dad’s old rusty bike instead. However, when he takes it to
the park he discovers there may be more to that bike than meets the eye.
The series will be illustrated and is aimed at readers aged 5-8.
The median advance for traditionally published authors is
“well under £6,600”, according to early findings of a survey into authors’
attitudes towards their publisher. The survey also found that bigger
publishers pay more.
The Publishers Association has launched a new bespoke
Copyright Infringement Portal which will ensure publishers “are better able
to protect their works in the face of a huge amount of content being made
available illegally on websites”. The new service, which replaces the previous portal that ran
for five years, has been developed specifically for The PA and is faster,
searches more websites than previously and is more user-friendly.
Marketing campaigns for books by James Patterson, David
O’Doherty and Chris Judge, and Helen Walsh were named as the winners of the
Best Marketing Campaign of the Year Awards today (25th March). The Book Marketing Society (BMS), which is now part of Nielsen
Book, gave its annual awards at the end of Nielsen’s BookInsights
Conference. Best Adult Marketing Campaign was awarded to Cornerstone’s
James Patterson is Missing, by Gina Luck, Rebecca Ikin, Alex Young and
Print book sales showed "continuing resilience" in
2014, with overall spending on print and digital titles increasing across
the year. Meanwhile, online book buying overtook in-store book buying for
the first time last year. In 2014, sales of print and e-books stood at £2.2bn, up 4%
from the previous year. The data was revealed today (25th March) at Nielsen
Book's annual conference, BookInsights.
Helen Macdonald’s award-winning H if for Hawk (Vintage) is one of six
books on the shortlist for this year’s Thwaites Wainwright Prize. The prize, which showcases the best books in UK nature and
travel writing, includes two books from Penguin Random House’s Vintage
division on this year’s shortlist, one from PRH’s Transworld, and one each
from independent publishers Granta and Faber & Faber.