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University of Stirling

Camille Rey, MLitt in Publishing Studies 2018-2019

December 7th, 2018 by Camille_Rey | Posted in Student Profiles | Comments Off on Camille Rey, MLitt in Publishing Studies 2018-2019
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Books used to be a way for me to escape the utter boredom of childhood. I would cry for Lady Oscar, whom no one seemed to remember (it is safe to say that history wasn’t my forte), hunt for old copies of Nancy Drew in car boot sales, and roam around the garden for hours looking for the branch that would give me that perfect feeling Harry experienced when his wand chose him.

As I grew older, I learnt to discern between books, to choose more carefully. I became fascinated by language, especially as I learnt new ones (my English grammar is, to this day, better than my French one, something you must never tell my grandmother). I discovered that I love proofreading, something I have done mercilessly for my friends for years, and I thought, “why not become a translator?” It would be the perfect way to spend my days interacting with text,  stories, and language.

What was not to love? Well, translation was not to love. I realised at the beginning of the last year of my bachelor that am not fond of the activity itself. Horror! What was I going to do now? I had just finished my European Studies bachelor but wasn’t a great politician either… So I took a gap year, went to Italy, learnt a new language, ate tons of pasta, and then it came to me: there are more than one way to work with books! I had helped my friends come up with a nice selection of books in English for their bookshop in France (something that wouldn’t be just another “thriller aisle”), and had loved it! My uncle works for a French publisher specialising in comics, and I had always thought it was sooo cool!

The excitement has not left me since. If anything, it has increased! The people teaching us are very passionate themselves, and in an industry where there is always something new to learn, see, or do (and read), it is easy to get carried away. Although I don’t know yet which position I will be aiming for, I try to keep an open mind, and learn about everything.

Flavia Agostini – MLitt Publishing Studies 2018/2019

November 28th, 2018 by Flavia_Agostini | Posted in Student Profiles | Comments Off on Flavia Agostini – MLitt Publishing Studies 2018/2019
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I grew up surrounded by books. My father is very passionate about literature, and since I was a little girl, we have been challenging each other to see how many books we can read in a year; I always win. I am definitely a fast reader. I actually never thought of the possibility of getting a job in the publishing industry, not until I graduated from my university in Italy (Roma Tre), in Foreign Languages and Cultures. I knew I wanted to do something in my life that involved culture and literature, but I was also positive that my career path wasn’t going to be that of a teacher or a journalist.

Now I am in Scotland studying Publishing, and after just two months I can tell it was one of the best decisions in my life. Not only I am learning about books from a totally different perspective, but I have also met a lot of different people who I can now call my friends and teachers who taught me so much in this short period of time. At first, I thought that the editorial world was just a mixture of copy editing and marketing, but now I know that it’s so much more. Specifically, I find proofreading very interesting. I have a keen eye for details and I am very organized, so I think that this position could be the perfect job for me, but I also like the thought of commissioning a manuscript and interacting with the author to bring the book to life. I set up a Twitter account just for professional use, where I can keep myself updated on what is going on in the industry, I bought a membership for the SYP and I also attend conferences and book fairs. I want to learn as much as I can and as fast as I can about publishing so that I will be able to continue on this path that I am so glad I chose.

You can find me on:

Twitter: https://twitter.com/fsanders92
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/flavia-agostini-48760a173/

Ilaria Tagliafierro, MLitt in Publishing Studies 2018/19

November 15th, 2018 by Ilaria_Tagliafierro | Posted in Student Profiles | Comments Off on Ilaria Tagliafierro, MLitt in Publishing Studies 2018/19
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I didn’t always love reading. The first childhood memories I have about picking up a book are of passionate hatred.

My grandmother used to always gift me books instead of toys, in hopes that I would understand the importance of reading a good book for personal pleasure. I vividly remember my mother forcing me to read a chapter a day of a book I wasn’t enjoying at all as a summer holidays homework. Back then I didn’t think it was possible to suddenly love something you had hated for such a long time. But I adored the first two Harry Potter movies and somehow I ended up badly wanting to read a copy of Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire that my mother had bought me. That book was the beginning of something new. I started it and devoured it. I kept bringing it everywhere just to reread a scene or two.

If you’ve watched iCarly, you’ll remember the episode in which Sam has to read a book for a bet, and she actually decides to have someone read it to her because she hates reading. However she starts reading the book herself because the reader is late and then suddenly realizes that books are great. I particularly love this quote from that episode 22 of season 1: “So I started reading it myself and it is fantastic! These things are great! It’s like TV in your head!”. Sam’s experience really speaks to me.

So, my journey with books was a long one but it actually got me to where I am right now. As I reflect upon it, it’s kind of shocking to me that a single book completely changed my mind and my entire future.

I read a fair amount through middle school and my first years in high school, but it’s only in the last five to six years that I’ve been obsessed with reading. I’ve never liked reading books from my home country, with a few exceptions, so I have almost always read English translated works. When I finally became fluent enough to read books in their original language I couldn’t believe how many books existed that I could have loved, and I had missed, that my country wouldn’t publish just because there wasn’t an adaptation for them. My online researches lead me first to Goodreads and later to Booktube, and those two permanently reshaped my interest and pleasure in reading books.

In the meantime, during this latest phase, I was studying languages and publishing as my undergraduate degree. I’ve always loved studying foreign languages, especially English, so that choice was a safe bet, however I still wasn’t sure about what publishing was and if my future career should have been in that area. My undergraduate degree showed me that the publishing route was the right path to follow. Unfortunately, it also made me realize that Italian education is too dry and far rooted in theory and that my degree wouldn’t be enough to pursue a career in publishing. Nowadays the publishing industry requires more practical and updated skills, and my university had taught me mainly the history of books and printing. That’s where the University of Stirling comes into play.

Amazed by the publishing industry in the US and in the UK thanks to my online activities and my choices in reading, I was looking for a degree in one of the two countries that would enhance my publishing knowledge by teaching me practical and updated skills that I would actually need in a working environment, and I think I’ve finally found it.

Many people still ask me why I decided to risk everything to come to Stirling, and while I very much enjoy speaking my favourite language, meeting new amazing people and visiting a dreamy Scotland, my answer will always be the same: I came to Stirling because the MLitt Publishing Studies program was perfect for me and my ambition.

Natalie Knabl, MLitt in Publishing Studies 2018-19

November 13th, 2018 by Natalie_Knabl | Posted in Student Profiles | Comments Off on Natalie Knabl, MLitt in Publishing Studies 2018-19
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Once upon a time… my mother used to read fairy tales to me at bedtime. I do not recall any early childhood memory as vividly as our reading sessions because they introduced me to a world of imagination and taught me the importance of stories. In a nutshell, I opened the first pages of my life as a reader back then. Memorising the plot of my favourite books and subsequently teaching myself how to read is the origin of my passion for a world full of words and sharing stories.

I decided to study two BA programmes at the University of Vienna and received a BA in Comparative Literature as well as in English and American Studies. I was, thus, able to combine my deeply rooted love for literature with that for the English language itself. More than anything, I wanted to not only deepen my knowledge in both of these subject areas, but I was especially craving to share my passion for words, reading and languages with as many people as possible. I managed to get a three-month internship at Helbling Publishing, an educational publishing company, in Vienna and was lucky enough to continue working for them for the last three and a half years as an editorial freelancer and content creator. I edited, annotated and corrected manuscripts as well as print-edition textbooks for the subjects German and Maths and was involved in various stages of development and production. I did, moreover, write exercises and texts for print books as well as online products. Having thus gained professional insight and skills from one part of the publishing industry, I am convinced that broadening my theoretical knowledge and being taught how to navigate other areas such as marketing, design and digital production at the University of Stirling will aid me immensely in finding my place in the diverse and exciting world of publishing.

There appears to exist a specific kind of magic surrounding publishing that drew me in just as quickly as the whimsical world of fairy tales did when I was a child. Pursuing a career in publishing and being a student at the University of Stirling is, therefore, hopefully the beginning of my Happily Ever After.

You can find me on:
LinkedIn
Twitter

Federica Fiorillo – MLitt in Publishing Studies 2018/19

November 7th, 2018 by Federica_Fiorillo | Posted in Student Profiles | Comments Off on Federica Fiorillo – MLitt in Publishing Studies 2018/19
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I came out as a bookworm at the age of 8.

The real surprise for anyone who kept feeding books to the avid reader of a child I was, though, came when I declared I loved spotting mistakes on the page and correcting them. A bunch of years later, I found myself editing friends’ dissertations and cocooning a passion for footnotes and technicalities.

Becoming an editor has been my constant objective during my years of college in Italy; getting a MA in Classics helped me develop a keen eye on details and great mental flexibility. Moving to Scotland was a dream I had been nurturing for years, so the MLitt in Publishing at the University of Stirling seemed like the perfect next step.

I find nothing more exciting than the publishing industry, and I do believe that the printed book has not by far run out of allure – even though I appreciate e-books and any digital format that is around. You never know what author or story will change somebody’s life, but you can be sure that ink and paper still have a lot of difference to make in this world, and I definitely want to be part of it. Visionary and possibly rebellious publishers have always been my lifelong inspiration and influence, and I consider irony the most powerful tool humans have.

 

I drench my days with coffee, I never miss the chance to have a laugh, and I tweet about it. So far so good.

BookSource

April 5th, 2018 by Ana Tratnik | Posted in Blog | Comments Off on BookSource
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Beginning of the spring semester, time for a field trip to Glasgow! On Monday, 5th February, the Publishing students got to know two aspects of the book process. We visited a distribution company, BookSource, and one of the largest and oldest British printing and binding companies, Bell & Bain. Both were absolutely worth a visit, not only to see what happens with a book when it’s published, but because we all left infected full of enthusiasm radiated from the people who work there.

When we arrived to the BookSource we were split in two groups. One group visited the well-organised warehouse with pleasant Jim and the other group was welcomed with a presentation by Louise, accompanied with coffee, tea and biscuits.

BookSource was founded in 1995 by Publishing Scotland. With only ten people working there their job is to receive and store books, get them to the market, collect, process and fulfil customer orders, invoice customers and collect cash. Their customers are booksellers, wholesalers, online retailers, supermarkets and private individuals. BookSource used to store more than 7M books, but since publishers have taken the advantage of the print-on-demand service, they are able to save space and the number of books in the warehouse has reduced to 3.44M. Currently, they cooperate with 94 publishers and stock 13,178 live titles, including CDs and maps.

BookSource distributes books not only to the mainland UK, but also to the Scottish Isles and abroad. Because of the increased traffic, it is cheaper to deliver books abroad, for instance to Germany or Benelux, than to the Isles. On every dispatched box they put a sticker so they can follow it and know where it is at any time, they also get information in case it gets lost and when the customer receives it.

They are constantly improving their system, which enables them to be up-to-date with what is happening in the warehouse, e.g. they can see what books are missing, but also what are the extra books they store. Their new developed services are MyBookSource, an online bookshop run by BookSource; DataSource holding descriptions of books which took up to four years to be developed and it provides information for their customers, Nielsen etc; and InfoSource that provides all the information for the sales team and allows publishers to check how their sales are going, discounts, how much cash they have collected, if they should reprint a book …

Some interesting facts to conclude, one of the bestsellers lately and a recommended reading by the BookSource is Poverty Safari by Darren McGarvey, a book about the effects of poverty in Glasgow.  The cheapest book, and also a bestseller, that has been stored in the BookSource is Everything Men Know About Women, containing nothing but 32 blank pages, “written” by a woman.

A big thank-you to Louise and Jim for making us welcome. We enjoyed learning about a step of the book production that is not directly linked with the office work in a publishing house, but really, really valuable.

Mireia Pauné, MLitt in Publishing Studies 2017-18

December 11th, 2017 by Mireia_Paune | Posted in Student Profiles | Comments Off on Mireia Pauné, MLitt in Publishing Studies 2017-18
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I spent my childhood and my teenage years reading and evaluating all the books I could find. If I had a book in my hands, I couldn’t avoid reading it, no matter what. This passion for books and words was the feeling that pushed me to study Journalism in Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona, hoping that someday I would be able to work in this sector.

While studying my Bachelor’s Degree, I was involved in different media, such as a local radio, Catalonia’s autonomic TV and a newspaper. I also created a blog and wrote reviews about the books I read and articles about fashion, culture and films. This experience made me discover a big social media community interested in books, culture and fashion and, two years ago, I started a monthly collaboration in a radio program talking about fashion and culture.

After finishing my Bachelor’s degree in Journalism, I was combining my last years studying music (my other passion), and working in my first job. Being in charge of the communication department of a private business helped me to gain experience and improve my skills in corporate journalism. Regardless that I truly enjoyed being part of all these amazing teams, I wanted to follow my passion and work in the book industry.

The best way to do so was enrolling in the Mlitt in Publishing of Stirling University; being a year abroad in Scotland, learning all the skills that I love, like design, marketing and book production. It was the experience I have always dreamt of. Seeing all the internship opportunities that the course offers, the excitement of being part of the SYP and the cultural richness cities like Edinburgh and Glasgow have, I do not doubt I am going to live this year to the fullest. My publishing career has just started!

You can keep track of this adventure right from the beginning:

Instagram 

LinkedIn

Twitter

Pinterest

 

Ana Tratnik, MLitt in Publishing Studies 2017-18

November 29th, 2017 by Ana Tratnik | Posted in Student Profiles | Comments Off on Ana Tratnik, MLitt in Publishing Studies 2017-18
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As long as I can remember I wanted to be a librarian, which pushed me to enrol in Library Science and Publishing after finishing high school, at the University of Ljubljana.

Since traveling has always been my passion, I aimed to do an internship abroad as part of my studies. After finishing my undergraduate degree, I got an opportunity at Icelandic Publishers Association, where I gained hands-on experience in publishing. Working with different publishers and organizing local book fairs gave me a great insight into publishing Icelandic literature and its marketing. Also, at this time, I became aware that researching foreign book markets, comparing them with the ones I already know and follow, gives me joy. My mentor during the internship (one of my favorite people in the world) was always telling me to be brave and not afraid to make mistakes, think out of the box, and everything would eventually work out. And it did.

When I returned back home to the sunny side of the Alps I mostly spent my days hiking, rock climbing, cycling, beekeeping and knitting on chilly days. Then, I came across the MLitt in Publishing studies at the University of Stirling webpage and I felt the need again. Publishing is what I want to study; I also want to pursue a career in right sales, marketing or editing. I am especially interested in books on alpinism, non-fiction, and literary fiction – the ones that change my perception of the world and shake prejudices off. I hope to someday work with people that are passionate, and who love their jobs; to me, that is the best way to grow professionally and personally. In the meantime, I am happily exploring the hills of Scotland, biking around historic Stirling and getting to know the publishing industry in the UK.

 

Madalena Cardoso, MLitt in Publishing Studies 2017-18

November 29th, 2017 by Madalena Cardoso | Posted in Student Profiles | Comments Off on Madalena Cardoso, MLitt in Publishing Studies 2017-18
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Chocolate, fantasy novels, large cappuccinos, watercolours, scrapbooks, yoga, Chinese food and labradors. That’s me!

Currently doing an MLitt in Publishing Studies at the University of Stirling, I wish to pursue a career in the dynamic industry of books, more specifically in Marketing.

I attained a BSc in Business Management at Nova School of Business and Economics (2014-17), in Lisbon, the colourful and sunny capital of Portugal, and the place I like to call home. The course put a strong emphasis on the development of analytical, research and communication skills, and I took modules in Marketing & International Marketing, Strategy, Finance, Statistics and so on, covering all aspects of Business. I spent one semester abroad at The University of Sheffield as part of the Erasmus + Programme, where I became more internationally aware, and where I fell in love with the UK (except for its weather), sharing unique experiences such as living, studying and travelling with people from all over the world.

My passion for the universe of words and my creative disposition dictated that my next step would be to cultivate specific knowledge in the Publishing field. Unsurprisingly, I am a fan of spending hours at bookshops, scanning charming covers and enigmatic synopses, and (discreetly) smelling lovely thin-paper pages. Four weeks into the masters, I have already learned about industry roles, trends, design theory, business models and standard software.

The Marketing of books is what really interests me, not only because of my background in business, but because organisations have become increasingly more customer- and relationship-centric and more experience-orientated. One day, I hope to become more than a mere consumer and enjoy more than the publishing output; I wish to take part on the other side of the industry, where all the magic begins.

Find me on Twitter and on WordPress

Kate Bailey, MLitt Publishing Studies, 2017-18

November 20th, 2017 by Kate Bailey | Posted in Student Profiles | Comments Off on Kate Bailey, MLitt Publishing Studies, 2017-18
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Like most of the students on this course, it’s fair to say that I love reading. Maybe it’s a little strange that one day I can be reading fantastical fiction about dragons or spaceships and then the next day I am completely invested in learning about obscure literary figures or the American Revolution. But so long as it’s written and I’m at least a little interested, I’m game to read it. This means I am quite good at knowing trivia, but not so good at finding space on my bookshelves!

For a long time I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do after my History undergraduate degree. Ironically, I attended a Publishing event in my first ever Freshers’ week at university. But for a long time I wasn’t sure if it was for me. I decided that I needed to get some first-hand experience, so I did some unpaid work experience in publishing houses in Edinburgh and Glasgow. They were brilliant. There were so many books! And the people there actually made a difference to their content and design and helped them to get out there and get noticed… Amazing! I was convinced. Publishing was where I wanted to be.

I spent last year working in a remainder bookshop learning that some books sell quickly, some books sell slower, and that no matter what, Oor Wullie always sells out (at least in Scotland). And now here I am to study publishing in more depth and learn about all the hard work that goes into making sure there are books to sell. I am really enjoying the classes on editorial and production work, which are the parts of my work experience I found most interesting as well. Since I enjoyed my last round of work experience so much, I am keen to get back inside a publishing company as an intern and work on some new projects!

If you think my rambling might be interesting in some way, please feel free to follow me on Twitter.