Inaugural Independent Publishers’ Conference and New Prize for Small Publishers

By | 10 May 2012

Since many of Cordite‘s readers either are or are keenly interested in small indie presses, I thought I’d re-post this news bulletin from SPUNC: The Small Press Network … in which Cordite will soon be a member. I should disclose that I am on the executive board of this organisation. And I am happy to ‘underline’ that this new prize for small publishers absolutely includes the consideration of poetry titles.

“SPUNC—The Small Press Network announces a new industry conference for independent publishers occurring in November 2012 at the Wheeler Centre in Melbourne. Thomas Minkus, the Vice President of Emerging Media & English Language Markets for the Frankfurt Book Fair and a regular correspondent for Publishing Perspectives, will deliver the keynote address, and the conference will feature an extensive program on such issues as rights management, changing publishing models and developments in sales and bookselling. Publishers and other members of the industry are all invited to attend.

SPUNC President, Emmett Stinson, says: ‘Independent publishing plays an essential role in Australian culture. The vast majority of titles written by Australian authors are produced by small and independent publishers, and yet there are no dedicated annual events for independent publishers and their authors to discuss this crucial sector of the Australian publishing industry.’

The conference will open with a public event and gala night, where the winner of a new prize for small publishers, The Most Underrated Book Award, will be announced. The Award, sponsored by Kobo, is the only book industry prize to award both the author and the publisher.

Kobo Australia’s Director for Vendor Relations, Malcolm Neil says: ‘So much of what happens in book publishing gets missed or hidden by the weight and noise from major publishing houses. Kobo loves these undervalued books and is excited to be part of a prize that clears away the noise and helps the reader find these gems.’

SPUNC is Australia’s only advocacy body for small and independent publishers. Founded in 2006, SPUNC grew from a series of informal meetings between publishers in Melbourne into a national organisation representing more than 100 publishing companies. It provides digital delivery solutions for publishers’ ebooks, sales and promotional support via ongoing bookseller relations and professional development opportunities. The Independent Publishers’ Conference has received some financial support from CAL (The Copyright Agency).”

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