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July 8, 2013

The Bookseller Design Conference

On 8th July 2013, I was lucky enough to speak at The Bookseller Design Conference 2013. Speakers included Donna Payne (Faber), Stephanie Seegmuller (Pushkin Press), and Auriol Bishop (Hodder). Oh, and me.

Donna spoke about the furore around Faber’s recent Bell Jar cover, with the Editor of the book Hannah Griffiths. They defended their cover, and described how they responded to the reactions to it on and offline. Here is an example of the reaction form the Guardian. Personally, I think it’’s an awesome cover, designed by the talented Mark Swan, and all those critics should sod off. That was the general sense at the Conference too. So there.

Stephanie Seegmuller talked brilliantly about the work of Clare Skeats and David Pearson on their branding and cover series style which is, quite frankly, beautiful.

When my bit came for the first time speaking at a conference I wasn’t that nervous, which was weird. I just stuck to what I wanted to say, swore a bit, took my time and actually really enjoyed it. My section was a critique of back covers, for which I just went into my local bookshop and took a cross section of covers for presentation, to show what I thought was and wasn’t working.

An excellent day, and a great opportunity to stop and think about what we do and how we can do it better. Thanks must go to Katie Roden of Fixabook for putting together an awesome programme.

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