Wednesday, August 09, 2017
Fledgling imprint for Kiwi kids takes flight
The creative powerhouse behind Little Love is Sophia and Anna Egan-Reid. Life-long readers, the sisters have been involved in family publishing business Egan-Reid Limited all their adult lives. Established by their parents Mary Egan and her husband Gerard Reid in the early 1990s, the company has now published more than a thousand books in New Zealand and internationally; latterly, as Mary Egan Publishing (MEP).
When Egan-Reid Ltd was sold to Pindar NZ in 2007, Sophia single-handedly ran the self-publishing department, before leaving to start up MEP at the end of 2010. Sophia got the company off the ground and assumed the role of publisher and project manager. Thereafter, she involved her mother and graphic designer sister in the business.
Now that MEP has grown and flourished, Sophia and Anna felt that the time was right to launch their own imprint from within the Mary Egan stable. Little Love is that imprint and marks a new chapter in their publishing story. It also creates an opportunity for Sophia and Anna to explore new challenges.
Passionate about their work and keen to pay it forward by working with New Zealand writers and artists, Sophia and Anna are committed to producing sophisticated, quality children’s books. They have now published two books under their Little Love imprint: Tu Meke Tui! by Malcolm Clarke and illustrated by acclaimed aerosol and stencil artist Flox (aka Hayley King), and poetry collection Feel A Little by Jenny Palmer and artist Evie Kemp.
Sophia and Anna are currently working on another three titles for publication in the next 6-12 months, as they collaborate with artists Beck Wheeler, Ema Frost and another, yet to be named. They are also working on the Te Reo version of Tu Meke Tui! which comes out in September 2017.
Sophia says, “Before my father died he wrote a business plan for MEP; a company that he envisioned would be focused on doing the absolute best for a small group of authors.”
“The creation of MEP has fulfilled my late father’s wish and, hopefully, exceeded his expectations. I like to think that with the launch of new imprint Little Love, we’ve made him proud,” said Sophia.
Sophia Egan-Reid grew up in the publishing business and is a born entrepreneur. Highly creative and driven, she started out as an administrator in family company Egan-Reid Ltd and quickly became Office Manager. For the past seven years, Sophia has been the Publishing and Project Manager at Mary Egan Publishing. Here, she works closely with clients, overseeing their books from start to finish. The creation of Little Love marks the next step in her publishing career. She lives in Pukekohe with her fiancé James, dog Gus and cat Blue. For more, go to: http://www.maryegan.co.nz/about/.
Anna Egan-Reid is a graphic designer who has been in the book industry for more than 14 years. She paid her way through university by illustrating for Australian publisher Elsevier and the Samoan Government. After completing her Bachelor of Arts in Art History and English at Otago University, she went travelling before coming back to start her career as a book designer. Although she had been typesetting since her late teens, she learnt the finer points of book design from her mother Mary Egan from 2005 onwards. From 2010–2012 she was an in-house designer at Penguin Books (NZ), before joining Mary Egan Publishing. Anna has been shortlisted for a number of PANZ book design awards and in 2016 won the Allen & Unwin Young Designer of the Year Award. In 2012 she won the Hachette New Zealand Award for Best Non-Illustrated Book. Anna’s son Louie is her original “little love.”