Yifei Xi, MLitt in Publishing Studies 2010-11

December 31st, 2010 by Yifei_Xi | Posted in Student Profiles | Comments Off on Yifei Xi, MLitt in Publishing Studies 2010-11

I’m a postgraduate student majoring in publishing studies at the University of Stirling in Scotland. My English name is Taylor. I came from Shanghai, China. My major was accounting when I was studying at Shanda University in Shanghai.

Then I came to the University of Stirling to change my major because I want to learn something I’m really interested in. More important, I hope I could find a job which I think is meaningful and suitable for me in my life. In addition, I’d like to mention that I’m really interested in traditional Chinese culture and education, because learning traditional Chinese culture can help us raise our moral standards and teach us how to get happiness in our life. I pay a lot attention to education including domestic education, school education, social education and self-education as well. And I found that publishing, espeacially children’s publishing, has a close relevance with education. If I become a staff member in a children’s publisher or an educational publisher, I would do as much as possible to consider what our publisher can do to benefit social education and what kinds of products we should choose to publish to benefit children’s growth, rather than only considering profit.

Life in the Gutter…

December 30th, 2010 by Lauren_Hunter_Nicoll | Posted in Blog | Comments Off on Life in the Gutter…
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A literary journalist (who shall here rename nameless) overhead at the Wigtown book festival bemoaning the fact there were ‘no good writers under the age of forty-five in Scotland’, and a frustration at a lack of literary magazines exhibiting new Scottish writing, were the key factors which propelled editors Adrian Searle and Colin Begg to establish Scottish literary magazine Gutter.

Both editors recently visited Stirling University’s Publishing Studies centre to share their experiences about establishing the magazine and to provide an insight into the world of publishing.

As graduates from the University of Glasgow’s Masters in Creative Writing course, both Adrian and Colin highlighted the fact that beyond being published in the course’s annual anthology there were few outlets in Scotland for the publication of new writing with the demise of literary magazines such as Cutting Teeth and Cencrastus.

Gutter was established to fill this void. With the proviso to promote new and exciting Scottish writing, the magazine showcases emerging and established writing talent side by side. Published twice yearly, with the first issue launched in August 2008, recently published writers have included Alan Bissett, Patricia Ace and University of Stirling Royal Literary Fund Fellow Linda Cracknell.

Plans for the future include the publishing of a Gutter anthology and the continuation of Gutter events. This year saw a Gutter event ‘McSex’ at the Edinburgh International Book Festival, a night which explored the tradition of eroticism in Scottish Literature – think smutty prose and nipple tassels (the smutty prose from the writers/nipple tassels on the burlesque dancer, although the opposite could have been interesting!), and events at the National Library of Scotland and the Glasgow Aye Write! Book Festival.

With the most recent issue full of stories from Scottish writers such as Louise Welsh, Zoe Strachan and Ewan Morrison I think that particular literary critic’s assertion was perhaps slightly misguided; there are certainly lots of good writers in Scotland under forty-five… Gutter is proof of that.

Lauren Nicoll

Karen Raith, MLitt in Publishing Studies 2010-11

December 21st, 2010 by Karen_Margaret_Raith | Posted in Student Profiles | Comments Off on Karen Raith, MLitt in Publishing Studies 2010-11

My undergraduate was in English and Scottish literature, at University of Edinburgh.  No matter how much I travel, I always return to this city.  This was a big factor in choosing to study at Stirling, because it meant I could still live in Edinburgh, and be close to my friends and employer.  However, this of course was not the only reason.  Stirling has a great reputation in academic excellence, and Alison Scott (Postgraduate Secretary) was fantastic at communicating about the course. I decided to pursue Publishing due to my love of literature, especially Scottish, post-colonial and Victorian.  Publishing also interests me due to the creative process.  I really enjoy the editorial classes, learning more about design techniques and the history of the industry.  However, I didn’t realise how interested I was in marketing until studying here.

So far, it has been interesting, engaging and the practical work is valuable.  Writing this profile does begin to feel like what I assume an on-line dating application would be like – so, I’m an Aquarius, who likes long walks on the beach, travelling, pretty things, Christian Slater, and am a little freaked out when people baby-talk to small children.

Karen Raith

Meet our current students…

December 21st, 2010 by Claire_Squires | Posted in Blog | Comments Off on Meet our current students…
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Back in September, we introduced you to our new cohort of students who joined us from around the world to study at the Stirling Centre for International Publishing and Communication.

Well, everyone is now taking a very well deserved rest after a busy semester gathering publishing skills, knowledge and experience, and hearing from an exciting range of visiting speakers. They’ve also been introducing themselves on our website, and you can find a range of student profiles here. As you’ll see, we’ve managed to attract students from around the world as well as tempting our own undergraduates one of whom, after surveying a number of different publishing courses, decided with great pleasure that she favoured Stirling most, and so decided to stay another year.

If you’re interested in coming to study with us for 2011-12, please do look at our study pages, and don’t hesitate to get in touch.

Meredith Joy Robinson, MLitt in Publishing Studies, 2010-11

December 20th, 2010 by Meredith_Joy_Robinson | Posted in Student Profiles | Comments Off on Meredith Joy Robinson, MLitt in Publishing Studies, 2010-11

I decided to stay on with the University of Stirling after getting my first degree (BA Hons in English Studies) because I wanted to expand my range of skills more before attempting to get into the job market. From my years here at Stirling I have found the campus a very relaxed and friendly place, and the teaching excellent.

I decided to choose to go into Publishing specifically because I knew I wanted my next degree to still be related to literature, as it is something I am very passionate about. Having an interest in the publishing industry, I talked to some of the people in charge of organising the course as well as comparing the course at Stirling to those held in other parts of the country. I was pleasantly pleased to discover that out of the other courses offered in several universities, I favoured Stirling the most.

The curriculum for the MLitt in Publishing Studies is challenging and interesting, providing students with a wide array of practical and theoretical skills ranging across public speaking, through report writing and market research.

I’ve greatly appreciated the chance to work with so many fellow students from all over the globe, and the chance to take part in this course.

Ina Garova, MLitt in Publishing Studies 2010-11

December 20th, 2010 by Ina Garova | Posted in Student Profiles | Comments Off on Ina Garova, MLitt in Publishing Studies 2010-11

I am a Bulgarian student doing my postgraduate degree in Publishing Studies at Stirling University. This being Stirling’s Centre for International Publishing and Communication we, international students, are more the norm than the exception.

Although my previous degree is in accounting, after spending a few years working as an accountant I discovered that I am more interested in words than numbers! So, here I am in Scotland, learning (and not only in theory but in practice as well) how to create books – everything from commissioning the author, to designing the product and sending the title to the printers. What the programme has done so far is to broaden my expectations. Publishing, after all, is not only about editing and I find that the software classes appeal to me the most. The first semester was exciting and challenging (everything my accountancy job wasn’t) and I can’t wait to see what the second semester will offer.

Ina Garova

Shengle Jiang, MLitt in Publishing Studies 2010-11

December 20th, 2010 by Shengle_Jiang | Posted in Student Profiles | Comments Off on Shengle Jiang, MLitt in Publishing Studies 2010-11

I am an International student and came from Shanghai, China. I heard from my friends that the publishing studies learning environment is outstanding. All of teachers are very kind and keep patient for international students, help us overcome the barriers in terms of language as well as culture. There is no doubt that it can attract international students to choose publishing studies and enjoy this wonderful learning environment. Now, I am enjoying this course, not only for the professional knowledge but also for the practical skills I have learnt from here. Everyday is new for me.

Christina S O’Brien, MLitt in Publishing Studies 2010-11

December 20th, 2010 by SCIPC | Posted in Student Profiles | Comments Off on Christina S O’Brien, MLitt in Publishing Studies 2010-11

Hi, my name is Christina O’Brien and I am currently studying on the MLitt in Publishing Studies course at the University of Stirling. When I finished my undergraduate degree in English Literature at the University of Glasgow, I wasn’t really sure what direction to take career-wise. I knew that I wanted to take a break from studying to travel, so I took myself off to Korea to teach English for a year… which soon became two. I had a fantastic time there, but I knew that it wasn’t really ‘real-life’, and that I really needed to make some decisions about what my ‘real-life’ was going to be.

I had always toyed with the idea of journalism and had written for the university paper in Glasgow, but I knew that my true love had always been books; why had I not thought of publishing as a career before? Before long I was spending all of my breaks – in between teaching Korean 5th graders the ‘In, on, under’ song – researching postgraduate courses in publishing. The Stirling Centre for International Publishing and Communication jumped out to me at once. The centre has an excellent reputation and I am so glad I made the decision to study here; I love the course so far. The modules are very interesting and have a great mix of theory and practical knowledge. The staff too are fantastic; they all have professional experience in the publishing world and this really translates into how the course is taught.

Christina O’Brien

Scotland’s favourite national pastime: NOSTALGIA

December 15th, 2010 by Karen_Margaret_Raith | Posted in Blog | Comments Off on Scotland’s favourite national pastime: NOSTALGIA
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Adrian Searle by David Lemm

Over the past few decades, Scottish literature has become slightly repetitive.  As Liz Lochhead’s quote above affirms, Scots are continuously looking back at the good-old-days.  Kiddies getting milk at school, Ah- Bisto!, the fish man on Tuesdays and working in factories and mines.  Read James Kelman’s The Burn or Gregory Burke’s Gargarin Way, and you will be slapped in the face by a depressing (albeit brilliantly written) anti-Thatcherite society.  Although it has only been twenty years since Mrs Thatcher has been in power, perhaps it’s time to embrace the new literary scene.  Welcome to the spotlight Adrian Searle and Colin Begg, the creators of Gutter magazine.

On the 25th November, these two ambitious young men joined the publishing studies class at Stirling, to promote entrepreneurship and contemporary Scottish fiction.  In reaction to a nameless critic asserting that ‘there were no “young literary Turks” out there,’ Searle and Begg set out to prove that ‘the new writing scene in Scotland is bouncing’ [Hind].  Meeting each other at a Glasgow creative writing course, the double act teamed up to form literary magazine Gutter, which has been compared to industry heavy-hitters MacSweeny.  The magazine concerns quality writing that is well-presented.  Writers have included Louise Welsh, Ewan Morrison and Zoe Strachan.  Searle would love to snag Scottish literary royalty, Kelman, Agnes Owen or Douglas Dunn.  They ardently promote the value of intellectual thought, and aren’t afraid of injecting a bit of Scottish ‘cheek.’  One of their events has been called ‘McSex’ and assessed eroticism in Scottish literature.  Also, the current poem on their webpage concerns the couple of the moment, Prince Will and Kate Middleton.  Excerpts include,

Life may be grim, but bankers and toffs have misery at bay

With this assertion, create a diversion, a Royal wedding day.


So, welcome back the Tories and their Liberal rejects;

We’ve cuts and riots, it’s strangely quiet, but cardboard city’s next.

Searle with modesty maintains that he is ‘playing with publishing’ or as he quirkily deems it ‘micro-publishing.’  From a marketing and design background, he co-founded the Glasgow-based publishing house, Freight, in 2001.  He decided to self-commission projects, in order to have complete control over the creative process.  Freight has churns out rare titles, including The Hope that Kills Us: An Anthology of Scottish Football Fiction, Snacks after Swimming and The Knuckles End: A meaty Collection of New Scottish Writing.  They base themselves around Scottish writers, and the projects are visually stimulating, and have already received several accolades.  Again, Searle refers to the titles unpretentiously as ‘fairly self-indulgent.’  Freight enjoys a sense of humour in the creative process.  When naming the title Knuckle End it refers to an obnoxious assertion that Scotland is the ‘knuckle end’ of England – the leftovers that you might make soup from or throw to the dogs.  Wittily The Knuckle End is broken into two hardbacks joined in the middle by a knee joint: one section is on fictional short stories, the other a cow’s journey from the field to the abattoir.  Artistically, the text employs squint double columns, and uses vernacular typography, created by ‘non-designers.’  Colin Begg? Well, in his spare time – he’s a doctor.  Doesn’t it make you tired just hearing what they’re up to?

Inspirational and informative the talk had the students swigging their lattes and developing formative strategies for our own publishing houses.  Can’t wait to see what the boys are up to next.

PS: Now you’ve finished reading my blog go over to Gutter to subscribe to their mag, and read the rest of the poem On the Announcement of the Engagement of HRH Prince William & Miss Kate Middleton by Carl MacDougall (Parental Advisory Recommended).

Image copyright David Lemm,

Karen Raith

Sasipa Jirasuktaveekul, MLitt in Publishing Studies, 2010-2011

December 15th, 2010 by Sasipa_Jirasuktaveekul | Posted in Student Profiles | Comments Off on Sasipa Jirasuktaveekul, MLitt in Publishing Studies, 2010-2011

I am an international student from Thailand with an Architecture undergraduate degree and background in publishing company. I found the MLitt in Publishing Studies at University of Stirling, which covers complete aspects of publishing process, will benefit my further career in publishing business so I decided to broaden my experience here.

The program contains both historical and current issues of publishing in the UK and global scale. It also gives some clues about what it is going to be in the future. Teaching staff are very experienced and lectures are up-to-date. They are enable me to see the bigger picture of publishing business both development and problem which are happening in my country. Visiting speakers from wide variety parts of the business give me interesting perspectives as well.

The study environment is very international. I meet people from different places with different backgrounds around the world. I learn not only publishing knowledge but also various cultures and languages. (I have tried many international foods from friends.) Moreover, the university is incredibly beautiful. The calm and natural atmosphere support my concentration in study and improve my health.

As a writer and publisher, I discover many benefits from the program. I am please to say that studying here is valuable experience in my life.