1 What's your company called?
2 What do you publish?
3 What's the story of the company?
I [David Roberts] had a 30+ year career in publishing non-fiction with a very successful company, but always wanted to work on the other side of the tracks. Two years ago my editorial experience and Bob Young’s business expertise came together to provide a home for new writing talent.
4 How's business?
It’s been a struggle! Our rewards haven’t been much of the financial type so far, but more in the way of reviews for our books—which at times have been overwhelmingly positive.
5 What do you enjoy about being independent?
As we are so small, I love the fact that we both get involved in all aspects of the business personally. Talking to authors and creating the right covers for our books would be the most enjoyable aspects, and building our crucial team of freelancers—a couple of whom I’ve known for decades—has been fun.
6 What do you think is the biggest single issue in publishing right now?
For us it is exposure, and getting our books into the market place. Generally I think there is a hugely positive feeling about physical books and independent bookshops from a new generation that isn’t being exploited.
7 What one piece of advice would you give to a fellow independent just starting out?
It shouldn’t feel like hard work even if it is! You’ve got to love and enjoy what you do. Publishing might not be an industry where you can expect to make much profit to begin with, but there’s a lot of fun to be had.
8 What do you get out of belonging to the IPG?
Contacts, hopefully. The bookselling side of the business is still a bit of a mystery to us, so advice and help in that crucial area will be wonderful.