Publishing Round-Up: 21st March 2016.

2020: A Publishing Odyssey a great success!

SYP Scotland’s inaugural conference 2020: A Publishing Odyssey took place last Friday on the 18th March.

There were over 150 attendees, 33 speakers and 14 sessions, with huge industry names and a diverse agenda across all aspects of publishing books, magazines and comics as well as authors, illustrators, booksellers and literary festivals represented.

The day-long event on March 18th was a success, trending on Twitter for over 16 hours. If you were unable to make it there will be recap blogs on every session coming very soon.

Read more about the conference on All Media Scotland.



Jackie Kay announced as Scotland’s new Makar

Jackie Kay, who was awarded an MBE for her services to literature in 2006, will succeed Liz Lochhead as Makar (or National Poet of Scotland).

The role will see Ms Kay create new work and promote poetry throughout the country, particularly encouraging young people to engage with the art form.

She was selected from a strong shortlist prepared by a panel of literary experts, convened by Dr Robyn Marsack, the Director of the Scottish Poetry Library. The final selection was made by First Minister Nicola Sturgeon and former first ministers Alex Salmond, Lord McConnell of Glenscorrodale and Henry McLeish.

The First Minister made the announcement at the Scottish Poetry Library in Edinburgh on Tuesday 15 March 2016 where Ms Kay read one of her own poems, ‘Between the Dee and the Don’.

Read more about Jackie Kay’s new position here.


Two new board appointments at Scottish Book Trust

One of the creators of Scotland’s National Curriculum, Keir Bloomer, was announced on 15 March 2016 as Scottish Book Trust’s new Chair of the Board of Trustees. Willy Maley, Professor of English Literature at the University of Glasgow, will also join the Scottish Book Trust board of directors later this month.

Marc Lambert, CEO of Scottish Book Trust, said:

“We are delighted to welcome two such prestigious figures from the Scottish literary and education sectors to our board. Their presence will assist us in achieving our charitable aims of inspiring and support people of all ages, the length and breadth of Scotland, to read and write for pleasure.”

Read more about the Trust here.

PRH relaunches The Scheme

‘Penguin Random House UK relaunched The Scheme, its entry-level recruitment programme, offering four 13-month paid traineeships from September.

The programme aims to reach and recruit future book editors from a wide range of backgrounds “regardless of experience or qualifications” and based purely on candidates’ “potential”.

The Scheme is part of PRH’s efforts to “make the frontline of the publishing industry more inclusive”. It will also work with secondary schools and partner networks including youth marketing company Big Choice Group, and recruiting via social media site Snapchat to reach “talented people who may never have considered a career in publishing”.’

Read more about The Scheme here.


David Solomons wins Waterstones prize

‘Author David Solomons has won the Waterstones Children’s Book Prize 2016 for his novel My Brother is a Superhero(Nosy Crow).

Florentyna Martin, Waterstones children’s buyer, said: “My Brother is a Superhero is that rare thing; a hugely funny book for young readers that is also rip-roaringly exciting. It is infused with the spirit of larger than life heroes and colourful comic book trivia that enthrals younger readers and delights superhero fans of all ages, yet at its heart is a touching relationship between siblings.”

Solomons won the best young fiction category for the book, and was up for the top prize against the two winners of the other category awards. Author and illustrator David Litchfield won the best illustrated book prize for The Bear and the Piano (Frances Lincoln), whilst Lisa Williamson picked up the best older fiction award for The Art of Being Normal (David Fickling Books).’

Read more about the prize here.

McDermid and Cleeves join Orkney library fight

‘Leading writers Val McDermid and Ann Cleeves have spoken out against proposed cuts to Orkney’s mobile library service.

Orkney Island Council recently announced that the mobile library service is to be cut by £25,000, as the council has to find £1.4m in savings following a drop in funding. The mobile library service currently travels to the islands of Stronsay and Shapinsay, Longhope and Westray as well as other locations across Orkney’s mainland and isles. According to the Guardian, the council said this cut could mean “reducing visits to each destination served by the mobile library service to once every two months, rather than once a month as at present.”

A petition against the cuts has been launched by author Alison Miller who grew up in Orkney.

Orkney Library & Archive was voted best library at the Bookseller Industry Awards in 2015 and was recently visited by J.K. Rowling. The petition said that despite these successes, “behind the scenes the service is being eroded.”‘

Read more about the fight here.


Patrick NessNess and Riddell vie for third Carnegie/Greenaway medals

‘Patrick Ness is in the running to become the first author to win three CILIP Carnegie medals, whilst Chris Riddell, Anthony Browne and Helen Oxenbury are all up for their third CILIP Kate Greenaway award, according to the shortlists announced today (15th March).

Ness is shortlisted for the CILIP Carnegie medal for his YA novel The Rest of Us Just Live Here (Walker Books) along with seven other authors, including The Lie Tree by Frances Hardinge, the winner of the 2016 Costa Prize, and The Ghosts of Heaven by Marcus Sedgwick (Indigo), which was shortlisted for the 2015 YA Book Prize.’

Read more about the medals here.


Wellcome Prize Shortlist 2016Wellcome Book Prize shortlist announced

The two memoirs on the list, ‘The Outrun’ and ‘The Last Act of Love’, are both stories of devastation and recovery, one following addiction and the other a debilitating accident. ‘Neurotribes’ and ‘It’s All in Your Head’, the other two non-fiction contenders, are studies of autism and psychosomatic illness respectively, reflecting society’s interest in the human mind.

The remaining two books on the list are works of fiction. ‘Playthings’ is an immersive imagination of a schizophrenic mind, while ‘Signs for Lost Children’ recounts the pioneering work of an early female medic.

“The shortlist reflects what has moved and inspired us most about books that deal with intimate and often complex matters of the human body and human experience,” said chair of judges Joan Bakewell. “Each one has found its way not just onto the shortlist, but into our hearts.”

The winner of the Wellcome Book Prize 2016 will be announced on 25 April.

Read more about the prize here.


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