2017 Keynote Speaker: Angus Phillips, Oxford Brookes University

angus_phillips_croatia_4Angus Phillips, Head of the School of Arts (Oxford Brookes University), Director for the Oxford International Centre for Publishing Studies.

Angus takes an overview of the publishing landscape in 2017, and examines where self-publishing and independent publishers now fit in. With a wide and varied experience of publishing in the UK, Angus promises to shed light on the prospects for smaller publishers and the future of book publishing in general.

2017 Plenary Speaker: Clive Herbert, Nielsen BookData

cliveClive Herbert joined Nielsen BookData (the UK’s administrator of the ISBN and book data systems) in 2002 as Publisher Relations Manager, and has worked with publishers large and small, helping them to improve the quality of their bibliographic data to support their sales and marketing activities. Clive is now Head of Publisher Services, which includes account management and client servicing of publishers worldwide, and he has an extensive knowledge of the impact that book data has on increasing book sales.

2017 Session Timetable

In a packed day, delegates can choose from a range of sessions to suit their own knowledge gaps. Here is the preliminary session timetable (subject to change).

  • 8.45am – 9.30am Registration + Coffee
  • 9.30am – 10.15am Welcome + Keynote
  • 10.20am -11.20am Session 1
  • 11.20am – 11.45am Coffee Break
  • 11.45am – 12.45pm Session 2
  • 12.45pm – 13.45pm Lunch
  • 13.45pm – 14.45pm Plenary Session (to be confirmed)
  • 14.45pm – 15.30pm Session 3
  • 15.30pm – 16.00pm Coffee Break
  • 16.00pm – 17.00pm Session 4
  • 17.00pm – 18.00PM Drinks Reception

Session One: 10.20AM – 11.20AM

Avoiding the vanity trap: choosing a self-publishing services provider

Andrew Lowe (Author and Editor) and Alysoun Owen (Editor of The Writers’ and Artists’ Yearbook)

This session will offer clear, actionable advice on what to look for—and what to look out for—when assessing the many options for independent publishing. Includes: defining the market, good and bad signs, best and worst deals, and how to find the service that’s right for your hopes and expectations.


Endorsements, blurbs and spine design: beyond the cover

Chelsea Taylor (Production Manager, Troubador Publishing Ltd) and Jonathan White (Sales and Marketing Manager, Troubador Publishing Ltd)

The cover of your book is crucial – both its design and the information it gives to potential readers influence buying decisions from retailers and readers alike. Chelsea and Jonathan look at all of the important elements of the cover from both a marketing and an aesthetic point of view.

Be a PR star: making the most of media opportunities

Ben Cameron (Cameron Publicity and Marketing)

With over 20 years’ experience working for both publishers and independent authors, Ben will show you how you can maximise your public relations efforts and raise your book’s profile.

NEED TO KNOW: The libel trap -- how to avoid getting sued!

Rosie Burbidge (Fox Williams LLP, Solicitors)

Legal expert Rosie Burbidge introduces the general principles behind the UK’s defamation law to help authors avoid the pitfalls, and will answer any of your libel and/or copyright queries.

Session Two: 11.45AM – 12.45PM

Reaching the retailers: selling to bookshops


Debbie James (The Bookshop, Kibworth)

Retailers source their books from publishers in a number of ways. In this session, Debbie explains what she’s looking for as a bookshop manager responsible for stocking decisions.

Doing it differently: crowd-funding and partnership publishing

Chaired by: Cressida Downing (The Book Analyst)

Jeremy Thompson (Managing Director, The Book Guild Ltd)
Alice Jolly (Independent Author)

There are many ways to get your work published, including crowdfunding, partnership publishing and seemingly a myriad of options. This panel looks at other ways to get your work published that differ from the wholly traditional or self-publishing models.

Building an audience: Practical ways to get your book known


Marion Molteno (novelist, editor & indie publisher)

You’ve written it, published it – now how do people get to know about it? There are ways to do it that don’t need a big budget – they will take time and dedication but can also be fun. Marion Molteno will share ideas from her own experience, including of using social media.

NEED TO KNOW: Copyright clearance – the easy way

Jonathan Griffin (Publishers Licensing Society)

The Publishers Licensing Society (PLS) offers services to authors to help with copyright clearance for image and text reproduction. Jonathan Griffin from PLS explains all you need to know about obtaining the necessary copyright permissions before you publish.

Session Three: 14.45PM – 15.30PM

Inspiring in schools: promoting your children’s book

Angela Fish (Author)

This seminar focuses on preparation, delivery and follow-up for authors who want to engage with children in schools. It considers the management of expectations and, sometimes, disappointments, together with ways of maximising sales potential. The session also explores how schools can help authors during the writing process itself.

NEED TO KNOW: Making money from library lending

Julia Eccleshare (Public Lending Rights)

Books leant by libraries can earn authors valuable income through the government’s Public Lending Right (PLR) scheme. Find out about this valuable additional revenue stream for cash-strapped authors.


Boost your ebook’s earnings: maximising sales

Rachel Gregory (Ebook Programme Manager, Troubador Publishing Ltd)

THIS SESSION IS NOW FULL AND CANNOT BE BOOKED. Publishing an ebook is relatively simple, but getting it noticed can be nigh on impossible. This session looks at what makes a good ebook stand out from the rest, and Rachel will be able to answer any and all ebook questions in her Q&A at the end…

Is your writing ready: before you self-publish…

Alysoun Owen (Editor, The Writers’ and Artists’ Yearbook)

Is your manuscript ready to reach its market? Alysoun Owen uses her experience as a publisher’s editor to advise on how to recognise when your text is ready to begin the self-publishing process.

Session Four: 16:00PM – 17.00PM

Do judge a book by its cover

Andy Vosper (Deputy Chief Executive, TJ International Ltd) and Chelsea Taylor (Production Manager, Troubador Publishing Ltd)

One of the banes of self-publishing is poor and inappropriate cover design. A cover can sink a book with retailers and readers before it is even opened. What can you do to make sure your cover design attracts rather than repels…?


Non-Fiction Focus: Planning your book for success

Ginny Carter (The Author Maker)

When your book has a specific purpose, such as helping your readers to solve a problem, it requires a special approach. In this session you’ll learn how to set the scene for your non-fiction book’s success before you write a word of your first draft, and discover the biggest mistake many non-fiction authors make.

Get your book heard: radio plays and audio books

James Peak (Essential Music)

Publishing audio books is on the rise both commercially and with self-publishers. This session looks at the options available and the challenges involved in releasing an audio book for sale.

Words and pictures: creating illustrated children’s fiction

Louise Jordan (Writers’ Advice Centre for Children)

A look at writing illustrated fiction for the 0–8 age group. Whether it’s writing a picture book for very young children, or something longer for the young fiction market, Louise guides authors through the ins and outs of using words with pictures to make the best of both.