• A manuscript is a large undertaking, what was your vision upon starting and do you believe you have achieved your goals?
Andrew was at the time lecturing part time at Harlow College and I (David) was doing guest lectures at Oxford Brookes University. The full time staff at both colleges would oftentimes say that there was no comprehensive textbook on the UK magazine industry. So we sat down and came up with a clear plan of the topics and issues we wished to cover – four peer reviews said ‘Brilliant - do it’ ! Routledge were very supportive, they really wanted us to publish.
The motivation was that we wanted to put down on record as accurate a picture of the industry as it stands at the moment and as it migrates onto digital platforms. It has been an enormous undertaking, far larger than we envisaged. The writing is the easy bit – checking and referencing and editing, that was tough.
• How did you and Andrew coordinate editing?
We picked two chapters to write each. We would meet most months to talk through our own work and also to go through the work of the other contributors. It was really important to get the right team – the ‘band’ as we call it. Richard Sharpe was a great find – he has written two really excellent chapters on Editorial. Christine Stam penned the History chapter and was invaluable on production, checking, referencing and the indexing. We would have hit a brick wall without her, honestly.
• How have your backgrounds helped to inform the book?
We both have practical commercial backgrounds but Andrew has been teaching for the last few years. The latter is important as he knows what undergrad students want to read about and what exam questions may be asked. We both have access to a lot of key industry players; they have been invaluable in helping us write case studies and talking to us about trends. Two sources were key – our excellent trade association The Professional Publishers Association and Wessenden Marketing. The latter is a consultancy run by a very knowledgeable man called Jim Bilton who also writes the chapter on digital sales. Wessenden is a mine of information.
• How is your book different from similar titles?
Inside Magazine Publishing is largely a practical textbook but practice and theory come together with two substantial and thought-provoking essays – one from Leander Reeves of Oxford Brookes University and the other from Dr Andrew Calcutt of East London University.
It is as up to date as it can be given the constraints of the book publishing process. And hopefully the reader will find it interesting and reasonably easy to digest.
• What do you hope resonates with the reader?
We wish to communicate that the industry has gone through tough times since 2008 but there are MORE opportunities than threats out there now. This book looks at all manner of new ways that publishers connect with audiences, digital, free titles, events, exhibitions etc. Also, that this is a world class UK industry with very creative people working very hard in not the easiest of circumstances.
The intended audience is largely undergraduate and post grad students of publishing and media studies though we do hope that people in the industry will read it for background.
• Can you sum up the book in a single sentence?
Two sentences? A practical and engaging textbook about an exciting, creative and vibrant industry and how it is tacking the migration to digital. Great value at £25!
• Do you have subscriptions to any magazines print or online?
I devour The Times Online every morning on my iPad. I love Country Life and The Spectator and a lesser-known horse racing magazine called Owner and Breeder. l buy Uncut and Mojo if the cover draws me in.
I enjoy the Guardian free app each day and TES, The Economist, New Scientist and Grand Designs are always in the house. I enjoy browsing the new independent magazines on the market (see chapter 3 of the book). I have a sub to a football magazine called United We Stand – an independent fanzine about Man U.
Read more about David and Andrew's book, Inside Magazine Publishing, by checking out the product page. Or learn more about some of our titles by clicking the related publishing books below.