Book Depository Blog

RSS

 

  • How To Books

    Tue, 09 Dec 2008 11:40

    Book Depository: What/who do you see as your primary market?

    Giles Lewis (How To Books): Dreamers, in the best possible way. People who aspire to achieving something; whether it's in their personal lives – to make a great wedding speech, for instance; or at work – to start up their own coffee bar, for example. Our books create customers, too, by nudging a dream into existence that someone may not previously have been aware of. Try browsing our catalogue – you will find yourself saying over and again "I wouldn't mind doing that..."

    BD: What are the principal challenges/opportunities you see at the moment in the business of publishing books?

    GL: The greatest opportunities lie on the internet. The Book Depository is a classic example of a new and particular distribution channel for books that is net-enabled. The web will become home base for our books when we have worked through the initiatives that we started early last year. We cover a very wide range of subject matters, and each book serves a niche of potential readers. Where better to reach those niches than on the web? We are Chris Anderson's The Long Tail personified!

    Of course the web brings its own challenges, too; most opportunities of this magnitude require new adjustments, but they are mainly fresh approaches to the same old things that have always lain at the core of the book business such as authors, copyright, distribution, bibliographic data.

    BD: What brings you to the decision to publish a particular title/author?

    GL: Authenticity, in a word. Our authors need to have been there and done it. Only then will they know the realities of what they are writing about; the things that really matter when you are investing in the stock market, going for a job interview, writing your dissertation or managing an event. Most of our authors can only "do" one subject, but they are masters of it.

    BD: What books are you most proud of having published?

    GL: We believe that almost all our books are undersold in the book trade, we are that proud of them! I admire all our authors for writing sixty five thousand words when they are neither academic nor literary. A good example is 'Dirty Nails', the pseudonym for the author of How To Grow Your Own Food, a wonderful, passionate book about growing and cooking veg which stems from the popular gardening column he writes 'in amongst it' on the vegetable plot for The Blackmore Vale Magazine every week. How To Make Your Own Will by a solicitor devoted to bringing law within the reach and pocket of the common man. Quick Solutions to Common Errors in English, another work of love from an ex-teacher. The Small Business Start-Up Workbook, also written with infectious passion. It is extraordinary how passion can run through a book list where you might least expect it - in prosaic, non-fiction reference; but How To Books is, of course, an aspirational, self-help list, and that breeds passionate inspiration.

    BD: What books are you working on right now?

    GL: We publish over 80 new books and new editions a year, a remarkable output for a production team as small as ours. Starting and Running a Greeting Cards Business is a recent key title. We are now working on final covers for August's The New Puppy Owner's Manual. We are proofing September's Going to Live and Work in Brazil and October's Practical Manual of Beekeeping. We are editing November's fourth edition of our Creative Writer's Workbook, and the authors are about to deliver their script for December's Free Your Self From Anxiety. And we are already designing covers for January's Growing Great Kids and the other nine titles scheduled to kick off next year's exciting programme for us.

    *****

    These are The Book Depository's 5 favourite How To Books' titles:


  • Cassell Illustrated

    Tue, 09 Dec 2008 11:40

    Book Depository: What/who do you see as your primary market?

    Mathew Clayton (Cassell Illustrated): For Cassell it is probably people that buy books in Waterstones and Borders and via places like The Book Depository. If you stand inside those stores though you see a dizzying array of different types of people.

    BD: What are the principal challenges/opportunities you see at the moment in the business of publishing books?

    MC: The internet is the biggest challenge for non-fiction publishers. People now turn to it for information on many topics they once would have looked up in books. Publishers need to try even harder to make sure their books are attractive objects that people want to own. The internet is also a great opportunity not just for giving a voice to new talented writers but as a way of marketing books.

    BD: What brings you to the decision to publish a particular title/author?

    MC: We look for original ideas that we think will have an audience. We publish books mainly about popular culture and the ideas need to broadly fit into that category.

    BD: What books are you most proud of having published?

    MC: For me it is always the last thing you did. So that is the Ward Lock travel guides. These are 1950s guides to regional Britain, charming little hardbacks with bright red cloth covers and fold out maps that we are re-publishing. They contain very detailed historical information and offer a fascinating window into how people perceived the world 60 years ago. A 36-hour sea trip from London to Edinburgh, for instance, is described as "short".

    We have published Oxford, Cambridge, Bath, Edinburgh, London, Lake District, Yorkshire Dales and North Cornwall with more to follow.

    BD: What books are you working on right now?

    MC: I am very excited about an anthology of nature writing we are publishing next year with the people behind the super cool record label Heavenly. Caught by the River is going to be an amazing collection of essays about British rivers. We will be announcing the book properly very shortly but it has an incredibly strong list of contributors drawn from both the rock and roll and literary worlds. It came out of this blog: www.caughtbytheriver.net and we will be promoting it at various festivals next summer.

    We are also about to publish the fifth edition of our 1001 Movies You Must See Before You Die. This was the book that started our 1001 range. They are now published in 25 countries and have sold close to 4 million copies across 13 titles. New additions next year include 1001 Inventions and 1001 Children’s Books – it has turned into a real publishing phenomena. The simplest ideas are often the best.

    We also have some great humour books coming out this autumn. A book of pop songs turned into bar charts called, not surprisingly, Pop Charts. It sounds weird but is very funny. And a book with the magazine Found — a selection of letters and notes picked up off the street — again very funny but often quite heartbreaking.

    *****

    These are The Book Depository's 5 favourite Cassell Illustrated titles:

  • Parthian Books

    Tue, 09 Dec 2008 11:40

    Book Depository: What/who do you see as your primary market?

    Richard Davies (Parthian Books): Initially we were trying to reflect a culture of South Wales that was not being represented in fiction, hence books like Work, Sex and Rugby and In and Out of the Goldfish Bowl, so I guess the market was the twenty somethings in the South Wales valleys. But we also wanted to get the world to read these books and we've had quite a bit of success with these books beyond the border of age and geography with Rachel Trezise's books in particular being translated into several languages. In recent years the success of the books has resulted in a more diverse range of books finding their way onto our list and hopefully a more diverse reading audience, through books such as The Colour of a Dog Running Away (Barcelona, love and mystery), Strange Language (Basque short stories) and The Long Dry (cow goes missing on west Wales farm!? -- odd but a winner of the Betty Trask Award and being translated into Arabic, Italian and Turkish). So looking at the list now I'm not sure who exactly our readers are and it worries me... a bit.

    BD: What are the principal challenges/opportunities you see at the moment in the business of publishing books?

    RD: Finding the readers for each individual book. We haven't got a genre market so we have to find the niche market for each book and broaden out from there.

    BD: What brings you to the decision to publish a particular title/author?

    RD: We like the book and think we can find the market for it.

    BD: What books are you most proud of having published?

    RD: In and Out of the Goldfish Bowl by Rachel Trezise. It was a first novel by a twenty year old who had a story to tell from a new perspective. It went on to win an Orange Futures Award and five years later Rachel won the Dylan Thomas Award with Fresh Apples (also published by us) for the best work by a writer under 30 against world wide competition. She's now got a contract with Harper Collins and we're delighted for her. More information on her website.

    BD: What books are you working on right now?

    RD: We're working on Exodus from Bohemia by Johannes Gramich (due out in October). It's his own translation of his first novel which won awards in Germany when it was first published ten years ago. It tells the story of the forced resettlement of the German diaspora in the Czech Republic after the Second World War. It's a fascinating story and part of the lost history of Europe.

    And Crawling Through Thorns by John Sam Jones (due out in 2009). John won a Stonewall award for his first book, Welsh Boys Too, whose subject was gay life in Wales. It was the first time gay characters had been given a central place in fiction based in Wales. Crawling Through Thorns is his first novel and charts the journey of a young man from confused adolescence in 60's Barmouth through the repression of trying to becoming a preacher at Aberystwyth in the 70's to the release of becoming a world churches scholar at Berkley in the early 80's and the hedonism and contradictions of gay Christian life in San Francisco. John's been on a journey in life and fiction and this book is part of it.

    *****

    These are The Book Depository's 5 favourite Parthian Books titles:


  • Kuperard

    Tue, 09 Dec 2008 11:40

    Book Depository: What/who do you see as your primary market?

    Caroline Eden (Kuperard): Given the wide range of books we publish and distribute we appeal to a very diverse and large readership. From our travel series’ we pride ourselves on understanding our market, but we also know that there are plenty of anomalies! So, generally speaking, our Chic collection appeals to the up-market traveler who appreciates that our books cover both cities and countries. We consider our Chic collection to be the creme de la creme of luxury travel publishing and the books have quite a following.

    Our Culture Smart! series appeals to anyone who cares about traveling responsibly. Traditionally this series has appealed to ex-pats, conscientious travellers and business people, but this is changing as we British accept that the UK is now a multicultural society and a pat on the back is more likely to offend than please. Our FHG series (Farm Holiday Guides) appeal to the growing number of us who like to holiday in the UK, either with our pets or family…or both.

    Among the series’ we distribute for Random House USA, we have recently had great success with Modern Library and have had in-store promotions with Foyles. Modern Library appeal to those who enjoy reading classics and appreciate the quality of introductions that are often written by writers who are as famous as the authors of the texts themselves.

    BD: What are the principal challenges/opportunities you see at the moment in the business of publishing books?

    CD: The on-line book market presents both the biggest challenges and the biggest opportunities for most publishers.

    BD: What brings you to the decision to publish a particular title/author?

    CE: For our Culture Smart! series it is quite good fun choosing destinations as we now have 60 countries covered. Naturally we are now publishing on less traveled-to countries. For example, this year sees Iran and Saudi Arabia joining the list. With roughly 190 countries in the world we still have much more to offer. It seems that the books we publish to more unusual destinations attract the most attention.

    As far as the Chic series is concerned obviously the countries and cities with a large proportion of luxurious properties feature, so that limits the scope slightly. The publishing schedule is also determined by which countries and cities are fashionable at the time, and therefore are seeing an upsurge in luxury properties driven by demand.

    BD: What books are you most proud of having published?

    CE: Our new Culture Smart! books to Libya and Iran stand out as we hope to offer some reassurance to potential travelers who may have concerns about safety in these countries. Additionally, the modern history and factual sections have not been altered to suit local politics in countries where such matters are controlled. The information within our books is truthful and has not been written to suit the authorities.

    Some travel publishers, who shall remain nameless(!), do not include sensitive material so that they can sell their books locally. We pride ourselves on delivering an honest account of history and current political situations. As a result, this can have consequences on sales but we like to remain factual.

    BD: What books are you working on right now?

    CE: One of the books we are currently working on, and one that is causing much excitement, most is England Chic. We have Chic titles to a variety of cities and countries but not one to our own land, so this is exciting.

    *****

    These are The Book Depository's 5 favourite Kuperard titles:


    Posted by Mark Mark

    Categories: publishers, Kuperard

    Write a comment | Comments: 0

  • Mitchell Beazley

    Tue, 09 Dec 2008 11:40

    Book Depository: What/who do you see as your primary market?

    David Lamb: A blinkered interpretation of my sales says my market target is female, middle-class, middle-aged or older foody, gardening, pet-loving home-owners. The reality is far more varied and interesting and I am always trying to define and discover illustrated book-loving and illustrated book-needy markets -- concerned parents, adventurous wine enthusiasts, health-conscious cooks, environmentally-aware vegetable gardeners, responsible new dog-owners--thankfully the list is always developing.

    BD: What are the principal challenges/opportunities you see at the moment in the business of publishing books?

    DL: The challenge is to answer the question regularly why would anyone buy an illustrated information book nowadays, and the opportunities are to be found in the answers, hopefully. There is great enthusiasm for good books when enough people get to know about them. This often means TV being involved. But it is also heartening to see how important the physical desirability of a book is. I am sure that the latest edition of The World Atlas of Wine is selling more than the the last because it is a more beautiful book.

    BD: What brings you to the decision to publish a particular title/author?

    DL: Pre-sales enthusiasm that allows the business plan, which must accompany any book project, to be viable. Sorry about the business-speak, but we surely owe it to authors and to those who work so hard in publishing houses, to make success enough to build a bouyant future.

    BD: What books are you most proud of having published?

    DL: BBC/RHS Grow Your Own Veg by Carol Klein marked one of those rare times in publishing when everything worked. Carol and the RHS joined forces to make a really useful reference book, not just a TV tie-in. 300,000 copies sold in 18 months is testament both to Carol's appeal and the zeitgeist to feed ourselves healthily from our own patch.

    BD: What books are you working on right now?

    DL: Valentine Warner's What to Eat Now, to accompany the new BBC2 series, is a book that many cooks will be clammering for, I am sure. I am very pleased with our new version of The Joy of Sex, which I think will be at least as influential as the original (which is saying something if any of you can remember the influence of the bearded man!)and will help and inspire many loving couples. And I am personally very engaged by a new RHS Encyclopedia of Gardening Techniques, to be offered to gardening hobbyists this autumn. While being absolutely up to date, it uses myriad pieces of beautiful coloured artwork to instruct and inspire. There is a timeless charm about it that I think will really appeal to gardeners.

    *****

    These are The Book Depository's 5 favourite Mitchell Beazley titles:


  • Showing 41 to 45 of 121 results < Previous 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 Next >
  • Can't find what you're looking for? Try our below.

Book Depository Team
Publisher Blogs