Featuring panels on the most important topics for publishing businesses today.

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Keynote Address

Danika IsdahlProduction Manager, Sarabande Books

Danika Isdahl is a poet and designer. Named a Publishers Weekly Rising Star Honoree in 2018, she is the production manager at Sarabande Books, an independent literary press established in 1994. Sarabande publishes poetry, essay, and short fiction and is based in Kentucky, United States. Isdahl has designed the books of award-winning authors such as Sandra Cisneros, Kimiko Hahn, and Heather McHugh. Her poetry can be found in Pacifica ReviewSonora ReviewSpilled Milk Magazine, and others.
Danika Isdahl is appearing at the Independent Publishing Program with the support of the Melbourne UNESCO City of Literature Office.

Trade Day

  • 8:30am

    • Performance SpaceArrival

      Coffee, tea and registrations

  • 8:45am

    • Performance spaceWelcome to Country

  • 9:00am

    • Performance spaceSales trends report

      Bianca Whiteley (Nielsen BookScan), Michael Webster (chair) 

      Nielsen BookScan tracks Australian book sales throughout the market. Hear about this year’s best-performing categories and get the most up-to-date analysis in children’s, nonfiction and fiction sales.

    • Workshop spacePoetry

      Ellen van Neerven, Kent MacCarter (Cordite), Yvette Holt (chair)

      With thanks to Australian Poetry, join poets and publishing professionals Ellen van Neerven, Kent MacCarter and Yvette Holt to explore the recent increase in publication of collections by First Nations writers, reception of and demand for these locally and internationally, and best practice in acquiring and editing these works.

      This is a free event, but booking is required.

       

  • 10:00am

    • Performance spaceAustralian publishing: SWOT analysis

      Rosanna Arciuli (Copyright Agency), Michael Gordon-Smith (APA), Sophie Masson (Small Press Network), Yvette Holt (First Nations Australia Writers Network), Juliet Rogers (Australian Society of Authors), Jackie Tang (chair)  

      Our panellists identify the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats for Australian publishers.

    • Workshop spaceSpeculative fiction

      Rose Michael (RMIT), Sam Cooney (Brow Books), Robert Watkins (Hachette), Angela Meyer (Bonnier), Joel Martin (chair)

      Clare Coleman’s Terra Nullius (Hachette) was shortlisted for the Stella Prize, Jane Rawson’s From the Wreck (Transit Lounge) was longlisted for this year’s Miles Franklin and Voss Literary Prize, and Brow Books has had much critical acclaim for The Island Will Sink (Briohny Doyle) and The Town (Shaun Prescott). So, is speculative fiction … going mainstream?

  • 10:30am

    • Performance spaceMorning tea

  • 10:45am

    • Performance SpaceKeynote

      Danika Isdahl (Sarabande Books)

  • 11:45am

    • Performance spaceFinding the writers

      Rebecca Lim (Voices from the Intersection), Michael Williams (The Next Chapter), Hella Ibrahim (chair) 

      From philanthropic development, to volunteer initiative to community NGO, meet the non-publishers who are helping the industry discover and develop new voices.

    • Workshop spaceFiction

      Rachel Bin Salleh (Magabala), Robert Watkins (Hachette), Jax Jacki Brown (Publishability, Writers Vic), Danika Isdahl (Sarabande Books), Kate Cuthbert (chair)  

      Book fair attendees agree that Own Voices are in demand. Our panel discuss developments so far, how a publisher can ‘get it right’ and the debated role of authenticity readers in developing diverse casts of characters.

  • 12:30pm

    • Performance spaceBest practice

      Robert Watkins (Hachette), Karen Tayleur (Garratt Publishing), Jonathan Seifman (Booktopia), Kate Cuthbert (chair) 

      Does your next junior hire really need a university degree? Does the industry’s growing reliance on freelancers present an opportunity to diversify our lists? Could your team be more productive working fewer hours? And what software out there is going to help you bring it all together?

    • Workshop spaceChildren's

      Alexandra Yatomi-Clarke (Berbay), Rebecca Lim (Voices from the Intersection), Leesa Lambert (The Little Bookroom), Clair Hume (Affirm kids), Melissa Keil (chair) 

      Thinking of starting a children’s list? Affirm Press did and they survived to tell the tale. Hear all about it, as well as news from the coal face of children’s bookselling, developments in Own Voice children’s publishing—and catch up on the latest trends from Bologna and Shanghai, as reported by award-winning children’s book publisher Berbay. 

  • 1:15pm

    • Lunch break

    • Workshop spaceSmall Press Network AGM

      This session is open to Small Press Network members only. Light refreshments provided.

  • 1.45pm

    • Lunch break

    • Lunch break

  • 2:30pm

    • Performance spaceInternational trends

      Khadija Caffoor (Text Publishing), Alexandra Yatomi-Clarke (Berbay), Alex Adsett (chair) 

      Get up to speed on the world of rights: trends at Frankfurt; who wants Australian titles; what the next big thing is; the genre everyone has had enough of – as well as trends and impressions from Bologna and Shanghai.

    • Workshop spaceAustralia and the world

      Nathan Hollier (Monash University Publishing), Stephanie Siriwardene (Scribe Publications), Sam Cooney (Brow Books)Tim Coronel (chair) 

      Hear from Australians who have taken part in fellowships and delegations to Asia, India, the UK and the United States: Nathan Hollier is researching opportunities for and obstacles to book publishing in the Asia Pacific region with a Copyright Agency fellowship; Stephanie Siriwardene has visited India as part of the Australia Council India Exploratory Program; and Sam Cooney’s research trips to the US and UK have informed his thinking on the not-for-profit model as a possible way forward for small press publishing in Australia.

  • 3:15pm

    • Performance spacePublishing's #MeToo moment?

      Alexandra Dane (University of Melbourne), Beth Driscoll (University of Melbourne), Kirsty Wilson (chair) 

      In a recent Books+Publishing survey of Australian book industry professionals, more than half of respondents reported they had experienced sexual harassment, with those in marketing and publicity being most likely to have experienced harassment. Our panel discusses the vulnerability of publicists responsible for ‘author care’ – and the wider industry’s view of these roles.

    • Workshop spaceNonfiction

      Rachel Bin Salleh (Magabala), Marika Webb-Pullman (Scribe Publications), Nicholas Pullen (HWL Ebsworth Lawyers), Alexandra Payne (chair)  

      Information is money – except when it costs you. Our panel discusses the payoffs (and payouts) of nonfiction, best practice in protecting yourself from legal action or costly recalls, as well as the process of deciding what makes a good nonfiction acquisition, how to market it and what the market is hungry for right now.

  • 4:00 pm

    • Performance spaceAfternoon tea

  • 4:15 pm

    • Performance spaceReaching your audience

      Glen Jones (Amazon), Pooja Desai (Hardie Grant Egmont),Olivia Fleetwood (Hardie Grant Books), Julia Ferracane (Saint Copy PR, chair) 

      Your audience is discovering books online, but where and how these days? – and what does that mean for your campaign approach, design choices and where you put your marketing resources? Our panellists share their advice on reaching existing audiences in the digital realm, and identify some readers you may have been ignoring.

    • Workshop spaceAudio

      Chiara Priorelli (Wavesound,), Astrid Edwards (The Garret), Joel Martin (the Morning Bell), Meaghan Dew (Kill Your Darlings), Elizabeth Flux (chair)

       

      Audio books are a fast-growing part of the publishing market and podcasters are the no-so-new bloggers. So, who’s listening? Hear from experts in audio about Australians’ listening habits, what kinds of books and authors make for good pod content and how to get listeners’ attention.

  • 5:00pm

    • Performance space'Distribution': Discuss

      Tom Danby (INT Books), Glen Jones (Amazon), Jonathan Seifman (Booktopia), Tim Coronel (chair) 

      Dennis Jones & Associates represented the titles of many small presses. In the wake of its demise, what are independent publishers’ options for distribution?

    • Workshop spaceAlternative incomes

      Sophie Masson (Christmas Press), Michael Hanrahan (MH Publishing), Danika Isdahl (Sarabande Books), Sam Cooney (chair) 

      Publishers publish books and bookshops sell them. Simple. But that has never been the full story. Hear from a range of publishers about other ways to make a living. From publishing partnerships, to fee-for-service as an income stream, to philanthropy and community events as viable funding options.

  • 5:45pm

    • Performance spaceNetworking drinks

  • 6.15pm

    • Performance spaceKeynote in conversation: Publishing in the Age of Trump

      Danika Isdahl (Sarabande), Per Henningsgaard (Curtin University), Emmett Stinson (chair)

      Sarabande Books has drawn attention to the role of the US National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) in supporting its publishing, and campaigned against the Trump administration’s repeated proposals to reduce this funding. Sarabande’s Danika Isdahl will discuss publishing in Trump’s America with Per Henningsgaard who has worked at publishing houses in both New York and Portland, and US-born publishing researcher Emmett Stinson. Join them to hear about the role of publishers operating outside of the New York hub, and their survival in the current US political environment. 

  • 6.45pm

    • Close