Publishing Insights Day 2024

Price: 45.00

Discounted and sponsored tickets for underrepresented attendees may be available closer to the time of the event. Please get in touch on to express your interest.

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06 June 2024

Manchester Writing School
Manchester Metropolitan University
Grosvenor East Building
Cavendish Street
M15 6BG

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About the event

Have you ever considered a career in publishing?

Join Comma Press and MMU for a full day of talks and panels from publishing professionals. If you're looking to enter the world of publishing, or you're in the early stages of your career, this is the perfect opportunity to hear from industry experts, learn more about the different roles on offer, and ask any questions you might have about about publishing.

This event will feature:

A keynote from the incredible Sam Missingham, the best connected person in publishing.
A panel discussion on how to get into publishing if you live outside London.
An introduction to publishing from CEO and founder of Comma Press, Ra Page.
A series of talks on different roles within publishing including editorial, book design, sales, publicity and marketing, agenting, rights and starting your own press.
A 30-minute talk on what publishers are looking for at interview stage.
An audience Q+A where you can ask questions to our speakers and panellists.


About the Speakers

Sam Missingham (she/her) is the founder of The Empowered Author [], a book marketing community for authors. She is passionate about supporting authors by demystifying publishing and empowering them, whatever publishing route they choose. Previous to this, she was Head of Audience Development at HarperCollins where she ran large-scale marketing campaigns across the business. And before HarperCollins, she was Head of Events and Marketing at The Bookseller, where she co-founded FutureBook, ran the Book Industry Awards and The Bookseller’s conference programmes. She is a self-declared publishing nerd and is particularly passionate about innovation in publishing.

David Pearson (he/him) is a graphic designer and teacher. He has been commissioned by Wes Anderson, Christie’s, Luca Guadagnino, Hermès, The New York Times, Penguin Books, Sir Ridley Scott and the V&A. David has been listed as one of Britain’s Top 50 Designers by The Guardian, is a member of the prestigious international association Alliance Graphique Internationale (AGI) and in 2015 he was appointed Royal Designer for Industry, the highest accolade for designers in the UK. David is also founder of The Book Cover Review.

Jason Bartholomew (he/him) spent ten years working in New York publishing, primarily for Hachette Book Group USA. He moved to Hachette UK in 2008 where he was the Rights Director across Hodder & Stoughton, Headline Publishing Group, Quercus Books, and John Murray Press. In addition to the Rights Director role, in 2015, he also became the Publishing Director of Quercus US in New York. At Quercus US, Jason helped publish authors including Peter May, David Attenborough, Pierre LeMaitre, Timur Vermes, Damien Lewis, Louise O’Neill, and John Connolly. Jason is also the CEO of Midas PR; and he completed a Masters in Business Administration at Imperial College in 2017. 

James Keane (he/him) is a publisher, currently working with Manchester's Northodox Press. He brings over a decade of experience to the role, having honed his skills with HarperCollins, Icon Books, and Endeavour Press. James has worn many hats in his career, including production, editorial, and design. Despite being a native of York, he has also resided in Leeds, London, and the Midlands.

James Benson (he/him) is an independent Sales Agent working in the print book publishing industry, based in Lancashire and covering a territory including Scotland, Wales and Northern England. He has worked in the Book Trade since 1984, and has been self employed for 27 years. In that time he has worked as an Agent for many major publishers, including OUP, Wiley, Elsevier and Taylor and Francis, but increasingly he enjoys working with independent clients. He was born in East Kent, brought up in Devon and after graduating from Reading, has lived in Lancashire for most of his adult life. 

Habiba Desai (she/her) is the publishing and partnerships director at Fox & Windmill, the UK’s first independent publishing company for British South Asian writers. Her main role is to oversee the publishing process of the manuscripts, from editing, typesetting and to print. She has previously worked at Waterstones and Penguin Random House.

Plus more to be announced…