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Tue, 09 Dec 2008 11:40
Book Depository: What/who do you see as your primary market?
Martin Ellis (Zymurgy Publishing): Zymurgy has a number of key markets: people who enjoy biographies and memoirs, north east local interest titles and the gift market for its little humour books.
BD: What are your principal challenges?
ME: Promotion and publicity for books once they have been out for more than six months.
You see, Zymurgy Publishing is a one man band based in Newcastle. (Zymurgy is the chemical term for fermentation, an organic process. I knew the word because of an interest in beer and thought that it would be a memorable name even if people can't pronounce or spell it!) The first book I published was Natural North, a photographic celebration of wildlife in the north of England in November 2000.
So, as a small publisher, Zymurgy is keen to promote titles for years not months, whilst the media is mostly interested in the latest titles. After all the time and energy from everyone involved in publishing a book, books need to have a long life -- Natural North is still a great book!
BD: What brings you to the decision to publish a particular book/author?
ME: Do I like it and will I be able to sell enough copies for it to be commercially viable, after all publishing is my living and not my hobby.
BD: What books are you most proud of?
ME: After publishing Bent Not Broken, Lauren Roche, the author came all the way from New Zealand to promote the book and work with women effected by issues raised in the book. I have received a lot of feedback from women who have enjoyed Bent Not Broken and found it to be an inspiration.
To Make The People Smile Again, George Wheeler's memoir of his experience of the Spanish Civil War has introduced the Spanish Civil War to many people. The book has sold well in Britain, been translated into Spanish and published by a global Spanish language publisher, and it has also been dramatised on BBC Radio and broadcast on the World Service to an audience of millions.
It is also pleasing to know that The Little Book of What Men Don't Understand About Women has entertained thousands and no doubt fuelled battle of the sexes arguments.
BD: What books are you working on at the moment?
ME: I am working on two titles aimed at the Christmas gift market. One book is a collection of children's jokes, based on the principal that children love telling jokes to their family and friends. The other title is a collection of interesting facts and information relating to the body. There are also a number of titles that are being developed for publication next year.
These are The Book Depository's 5 favourite Zymurgy Publishing titles:
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