Vicky Sugden

Publishing Scotland Annual Conference 2012

March 4th, 2012 by Victoria_Sugden | Posted in Blog | Comments Off on Publishing Scotland Annual Conference 2012
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This year the Publishing Scotland Annual Conference took place at Edinburgh’s Royal College of Physicians on Monday 27 February. Following registration and a number of freebies, an assortment of publishing professionals and students congregated in the main auditorium (at a somewhat vertiginous height!) ready to catch the pearls of wisdom thrown their way.

After a warm welcome from the Chair and Chief Executive of Publishing Scotland, Bob McDevitt and Marion Sinclair, the conference was in motion. The most engaging speeches, for me, were delivered in the morning session. The key note speech came from Alan Clements, Director of Content at STV on ‘Future-Gazing-what’s in store for media and culture in the next few years.’ Clements pushed that in this day and age there is an issue of content, rather than the means of distribution in broadcasting and publishing. After all, “content is king” Clements later declared. Ultimately, Clements argued that publishing and TV should be more engaged than they already are. He also stated that Scotland has become the “other” in UK terms, thus publishers and TV should work together to create new Scottish-centric material.

Steve Bohme, Research Director of Book Marketing Ltd gave an insightful talk on key retail market trends. His decision to use a weddings metaphor in his slides was very effective but left some of us disheartened with the lack of real cake during refreshments…

Then came the presentation that was a firm favourite of mine, Social Media Consultant, Jon Reed speaking about ‘Publishing Direct-reaching readers online using social media.’ Social media is certainly proving to be one of the principle ways to reach consumers as Reed presented the staggering facts of there being two billion people online, 850 million on Facebook and approximately 500 million Twitter users worldwide! Reed was very insightful and revealed numerous ways to reap the benefits of social media marketing that many social media fiends would not even think of!

The afternoon sessions were less digitally focused but nonetheless enlightening with talks ranging from metadata (from Nielsen Bookscan) to Scottish library partnerships. At the end of proceedings Publishing Scotland kindly set up a Q&A session for us students, which gave us a valuable 45 minutes to grill those already in the industry.

My thanks go to Publishing Scotland for a fascinating and well-organised day.

– Vicky Sugden

Image by Sandy Young Photography

Cocktails with the SYP Scotland

October 16th, 2011 by Victoria_Sugden | Posted in Blog | Comments Off on Cocktails with the SYP Scotland
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The Society of Young Publishers is a UK community that is aimed towards those of us with less than ten years of experience. Established in 1949 by a body of volunteers, either already in publishing or an associated trade, SYP endeavours to support and encourage us in our publishing pursuits. The prime opportunity to network, mingle and make yourself known, SYP events are treasured occasions for all young publishers-to-be.

Recently, described as an event for “bookish types” on Facebook, SYP Scotland gathered at the Dragonfly Cocktail Bar in Edinburgh last Thursday (6th October) for a mélange of cocktails and networking. The evening was a great opportunity for young and budding publishers to network with those who have established themselves in a publishing career. I was particularly inspired by Fiona MacLeod‘s infectious passion and enthusiasm  for the trade.

The notion of networking in a relaxed and informal atmosphere with a cocktail in hand certainly, for me, reinforced the retrospective term of “Gentlemanly” publishing, on the drinking and socialising side of things! Ironically, the industry that was once so male orientated is now flooded with women, which was immediately obvious as you stepped into the function room of Dragonfly- the ratio of men to women was undoubtedly disproportionate! Nonetheless, it was a lovely evening had by all, with a very eclectic mix of mouth-watering cocktails and fine spirits catering towards all bon vivants!

Keep an eye on the SYP website for more great up and coming events.

Vicky Sugden, MLitt in Publishing Studies 2011-12

October 10th, 2011 by Victoria_Sugden | Posted in Student Profiles | Comments Off on Vicky Sugden, MLitt in Publishing Studies 2011-12
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My decision to stay on at Stirling after completing my degree in English Studies was a great one. I had been seriously considering the MLitt in Publishing Studies from about Christmas last year and I got in touch with Claire Squires about the course and her enthusiasm and inspiration really spurred me on.  I met  with Padmini Ray Murray during the last year of my undergraduate degree and she showed me the publishing projects completed by previous students and told me more about the course, I knew instantly that it was for me. I then applied, got in and never looked back.

I had looked into studying Publishing at a few other places but remaining in Stirling has been a worthwhile decision, not only are loads of my friends still nearby but I also have the familiarity of the university and endless support from the staff.  The course provides a great deal of opportunity and support to continue my professional development through an abundance of networking and literary events, and of course, not forgetting the social ones! Typically with most Arts students, I wanted to keep the close relationship with one of my passions, literature, and Publishing Studies combines my pleasure with professionalism.

It’s only a few weeks into the course, and already everyone is being kept on their toes! I have met some amazing people and I look forward to embracing the year ahead with everybody.