Publishing Round-Up: 15th February 2016.

Barrington Stoke and Bright Red shortlisted for Independent Publishers Guild 2016 awards

Barrington Stoke is shortlisted for IPG Children’s Publisher of the Year and for the Alison Morrison Diversity Award.

Bright Red Publishing is one of four publishers competing for the Publishers Licensing Society Education Publisher of the Year.

The winners will be announced at a gala dinner at the IPG Conference on Thursday 3 March.

Read the full shortlist here.


Estelle Maskame shortlisted for a Romantic Novel Award 2016

Did I Mention I Love You? by Estelle Maskame (Black & White Publishing) has been shortlisted in The Young Adult Romantic Novel Award of the Romantic Novel of the Year Awards. This category features protagonists who are teenagers or young adults. The teenage author is from Peterhead and built up a huge following on Wattpad before being published by Edinburgh-based Black & White Publishing.’

Read more about the award here.


Independent print edition closes

‘The Independent and Independent on Sunday print editions are to close, leaving publishers “shocked” and saddened by the end of one of the “last, best” places to have books reviewed in print.

ESI Media announced the closure of the two print titles on Friday (12th February), saying the products will move to a “digital only future”.

The number of roles to be made redundant at the newspaper’s 150-strong editorial team has not been revealed but its owner Evgeny Lebedev said 25 new positions would be created online.’

Read more about the changes here.

Waterstones three years from fiscal autonomy despite upturn, Daunt warns

‘Waterstones must sustain three years of consecutive profit-making before the company can “stand on its own two feet” and not rely on the “charity” of its owner, the chain’s m.d. James Daunt has said.

The retailer’s annual financial results for the year to 25th April 2015 were filed recently at Companies House, revealing that despite achieving a £16.5m swing in operating profit (from an operating loss of £12.2m in the previous results to a profit of £4.3m this time around), the company’s final balance was £1.9m in the red after tax. In the results filed in 2014, the retailer was down £18.5m. Sales at the chain for the 12 months to April 2015 were up a marginal 1% year on year, to £378.0m, through its UK branches.’

Read more about Daunt’s comments here.


Eighth Harry Potter book set to be ‘publishing event of year’

‘Chain booksellers in the UK have welcomed yesterday’s news that Little, Brown UK will publish the script of J K Rowling’s Harry Potter stage play in book form, although independents are less sure of how well the book will sell.

Both Waterstones and Foyles said they were excited about the script book release of Potter and the Cursed Child Parts I & II on 31st July. The play, by Jack Thorne, continues the story of Harry, Ron and Hermione 19 years after the end of the seventh novel.

James Daunt, m.d. of  Waterstones, did not reveal any details about how his company will mark the occasion, but said the retailer’s plans will put previous Harry Potter launches “into the shade”. He added: “There are no sweeter three words to the ears of a bookseller than ‘the eighth story’.”’

Read more about the eighth story here.

Hachette UK sales drop 6.7% in fourth quarter

‘Hachette UK saw overall sales fall by 6.7% in the fourth quarter of the year due to lower e-book sales, with its parent company Lagardere Publishing saying that “market trends have reversed in the US and the UK”.

Lagardère Publishing has released its fourth quarter and full year results, revealing that Hachette UK saw sales drop 6.7% year-on-year in the fourth quarter, attributed to the decline in e-book sales. The company said changes to VAT on 1st January 2015 were responsible for the drop, along with a “slower release schedule” than the fourth quarter 2014.

Overall for the fourth quarter, Lagardère Publishing’s sales were up 9.2% like-for-like to €631m and up 17.5% on a reported basis.’

Read more about the drop here.

Survey finds 76% of children prefer print books

‘Children prefer print books to e-books for both reading for pleasure and reading for education, a study by reading charity BookTrust has found.

Recent research conducted by BookTrust in association with the Open University investigated the use of digital media and e-books by young children, with particular focus on children’s reading for pleasure and shared reading with their parents at home. It investigated parental reports of practises and the associated perceptions of these practices by parents of zero to eight-year-old children. In total, 1,511 parents of UK children completed the survey.

The study revealed that 76% of surveyed parents found their children prefer print books for reading for pleasure and 69% prefer print books for educational reading. As for interactive e-books, only 30% of parents said that their child prefers using them for reading for pleasure, and 34% for educational reading. Only 15% of parents said that children prefer using simple e-books for reading for pleasure and educational reading.’

Read more about the survey here.

‘Diverse’ Waterstones Children’s Book Prize shortlists revealed

‘Fiction books reflecting the “concerns and issues” of modern day children and teenagers have been highlighted in the Waterstones Children’s Book Prize 2016 shortlists.

In the older fiction category, The Art of Being Normal (David Fickling Books) by Lisa Williamson and Jandy Nelson’sI’ll Give You the Sun (Walker Books) are two titles that have LGBT issues their core. In the former, two teens struggle with their gender identities at school – a place where “secrets are hard to keep”. Children’s author, Juno Dawson, who has herself recently transitioned, called the book “a sensational, heart-warming and life-affirming debut”. In Nelson’s novel, which has been optioned for film by Warner Bros, a brother and sister “driven apart by tragedy are brought back together in the most unexpected way as they both find themselves falling for boys at the same time”.’

Read more about the shortlist here.

The Bookseller launches indie sales tracker

‘The Bookseller has launched an independent author e-book sales tracker, inviting authors and small digital publishers whose e-book sales data currently goes unreported to complete a simple online form designed to capture their 2015 e-book sales information. The results will be used by The Bookseller to analyse the self-published digital market.

The move acknowledges that, though under-reported, the self-published e-book sector is a growing area of the overall book business. Amazon, which has by far the largest market share of this sector, does not release e-book sales numbers to any third party analytics company, or respond to media requests for such data.

The Bookseller has pioneered the gathering of industry e-book sales data, having launched a monthly e-book ranking in 2013 with publisher-supplied e-book sales volume numbers, and an imminent weekly e-book chart, in partnership with The Sunday Times.’

Read more about the tracker here.



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