Describe your role
I look after Scottish sales at Black & White, generate press coverage for selected titles and books, and manage events and book launches. I also work closely with our press officer Lina Langlee and digital and operations manager Thomas Ross to generate social media content, as well as collaborating on sales, marketing or PR projects that need all of our skills and experience. I also liaise with our Irish sales and publicity team.
What do you like best about your role?
I love getting out and about and meeting booksellers, librarians and readers. For example, recent Book Week Scotland events with Maggie’s Mittens author and illustrator Coo Clayton and Alison Soye have been really rewarding to organise; it’s brilliant getting to see children’s excitement first-hand. I’m looking forward to attending lots more festivals with Coo and Alison in the coming months.
Which new products or titles are you working on at the moment?
It’s been so rewarding to have been part of our new YA imprint, Ink Road, since it began in 2017. We have had a great first year and I’m thrilled to be able to shout about our first 2018 title, Starfish, by Akemi Dawn Bowman. Starfish is a stunning début, both beautiful and heartwrenching. Akemi is moving to Scotland shortly, so the team will be working to build her profile here and, hopefully, setting up lots of events across the UK.
What skills do you need for your role?
I’m usually managing a lot of competing priorities, so being able to prioritise and be really organised is essential. Building good relationships with authors, journalists, booksellers and book buyers is also vital for the success of our books, so being friendly, reliable and persuasive is key.
What advice would you give to those looking to work in the industry?
Join the Society of Young Publishers and come to its events. Joining the SYP committee has been invaluable to me, I’ve made brilliant friends and built up a great network of publishing contacts. Our third annual conference is on 9th March and it’s the perfect opportunity to get a taste of the industry and to meet with publishers and other people trying to break into publishing.