Well, tomorrow is the last day of 2015 so we thought we’d take a moment to look back on what has felt like a momentous year for SYP Scotland. We had some fabulous events, expanded online, and started planning our first ever conference, so here’s a handy guide to relive our last twelve months.
We kicked off the year with our Intern Event, an invaluable guide to getting your foot in the door and preparing yourself for a career in publishing, with a mix of trade, education and children’s publishers, as well as a magazine expert.
At the Publishing Scotland conference in February, our Breakout Session saw an industry panel offer advice to students in attendance who were on publishing courses. To condense the event into one piece of advice from HarperCollins’ Sam Missingham: “Hustle Hard.”
After our AGM, we headed down to London Book Fair and crammed into SYP’s event How To Get Into Publishing with a mix of speakers from the likes of Penguin Random House and Inspired Selection. We also covered a few other sessions to sink your teeth into – a great insight from down south!
To relax around deadline time, we had a movie night. In honour of the then upcoming Go Set A Watchman, we watched the documentary Hey, Boo: Harper Lee and To Kill a Mockingbird. No spoilers in our post, promise! But a must-watch for fans.
Come May, we got crafty. The Travelling Bookbinder Rachel Hazell held an evening of making your own book art and exploring the physical forms in which narratives can be held. Onto June, we held How To Start Your Own Publishing Company, an invaluable event for the self-starters among you! With a panel of those who, unsurprisingly, started their own publishing companies, it was a great insight into the running of a publisher, and skills required.
In the summer we went to the Children’s Media Conference and popped into their Commissioner Conversations with Publishers with guests from Penguin Random House, Little Brown UK and Rogers, Coleridge & White. A neat snapshot of the children’s market.
In August, we hosted our first ever magazine event, Revolutions and Evolutions in Magazine Publishing, in association with PPA Scotland (you can also read about Magfest here). With guests from DC Thomson, White Light Media, The Big Issue and The Drum, it was an all-encompassing look at the magazine industry, both print and digital.
With book festivals in the air, we launched #SYPfest, our Twitter chats on book festivals. The look into events like Dundee Literary Festival, Bloody Scotland and HarperCollins’ digital festivals was really interesting, given that we never usually see the work that goes into them.
Next, we welcomed new students from the University of Stirling and Napier University with our Mad Hatter social event, complete with people from industry to mingle with, tea and – of course – cakes. Then we switched our gaze to the process of book design, from concept to the customer. With designers and booksellers on hand, attendees were guided through the whole process of a cover, its importance and impact of the finest details.
November focussed on Children’s Publishing: Through the Age Ranges, with picture books, middle-grade and YA covered from the perspective of agents, authors and designers. A must read for anyone interested in any level of children’s publishing, we promise!
We had the absolute pleasure in the latter part of this year to partner with the Saltire Society to host shadow judging panels for students and young professionals. This was topped off by the awards themselves. You can read about our winners, those who took part, the experiences and more over here.
Our in-person events ended with our Christmas drinks. What better way to spend a dreich evening than colouring in, free books and drinks? Finally, we closed off our online events with a string of #SYPchats, from Kirkland Ciccone and Lucy Powrie, who excel in building YA communities, to authors Liz Bankes and Matt Haig.
This is just a snapshot of our year, and we’ve got plenty more planned to make 2016 just as exciting! We hope to see you there.