Random House's Square Peg is lining up two in-house projects for the second half of 2012, with a guide to grammar penned by editorial staff, and a doodle book created by the art department.
On 2nd August, Square Peg will release Black White & Colour: A Creative Sketch and Doodle Book, created by Random House creative director Suzanne Dean and her team. The book will be a £9.99 hardback, with the beginnings of doodles on each page for the reader to add to, and with some pages perforated so that they can be used as postcards.
Dean said the idea was brought to her team by Square Peg director Rosemary Davidson and Vintage publishing director Rachel Cugnoni. "They were looking around and there was nothing really in that creative market," said Dean. The six-strong team set themselves the "tight schedule" of bringing in three pages of doodles each Monday to create the book from. "We did all the doodles by hand because we didn't want anything too electronic. We also wanted a certain wit to it," said Dean.
The market is for a till-point giftbook, for "anyone who likes doodling, creative people". Dean added that the creative team is hoping to initiate further in-house projects. Grammar for Grown-ups: A Straightforward Guide to Good English is written by Random House managing editorial director Rowena Skelton Wallace and freelance copy-editor Katherine Fry. It will be published on 6th September as a £10.99 hardback.
Skelton Wallace, who is writing under her married name Kirton, said: "I fell on the floor laughing [when Davidson suggested the idea], because I was never taught grammar at school, and she said: ‘That's exactly the point!', because so many people haven't been."
The book, which includes self-tests, took the pair 18 months to write, and Skelton Wallace said: "There are so many grammar books out there, and this one is to appeal to people who don't want to be ranted at, or feel there is some pompous twit telling them how it's done." She added: "It does feel funny it being my own book. I had to organise my own proof-reader the other day, and my copy-editor said she was just going to have to mark up everything, just in case."