The Hipsters are back…
Today, publishing in this country is a fantastic and thriving industry, one I have been lucky enough to work in for over twenty years. It has enabled me to buy my first car, my house and has provided a lifestyle that my family and I enjoy. I have a lot to be thankful for, which is why I am so protective when it comes to UK publishing. Last year our country experienced a record-breaking year with sales of books and journals reaching £4.8bn, seeing a healthy rise in consumer, educational and academic publishing. Our Maths and Science text books are shipped to schools in countries all over the world (I know because we design and illustrate quite a few of them!), while exports of children’s books have increased by 34% to £116bn. All very impressive and encouraging stats I am sure you will agree.
“UK Publishing is a world leader and these figures confirm that the industry is flourishing due to the hard work and ingenuity of its superb publishing houses and workforce”
Stephen Lotinga, Chief Executive of the Publishers Association, 2017
Elsewhere the emergence of smaller, independent publishers has seen confidence in authors flourish, and left the creative shackles sat rusting in a damp corner. The business-like, sometimes overpowering association a multi-national company have been known to have with their authors has been replaced by a more supportive, personal relationship only a small team can offer. This shift has in turn lead to the increase of POD (Printing On Demand), which is another example of how technology has facilitated our ever-evolving industry. Gone are the days of paying for long initial print runs or absorbing the cost of unsold stock. POD streamlines the publishing process in a way that can only help and encourage both authors and small publishers to thrive. Risks are being taken and the creative personalities who were once lost in our industry are steadily returning and cultivating the publishing sector into a new and exciting entity.