Today I am delighted to welcome Andy from March Hamilton Media to my blog. This small press publishes one of my favourite authors, Beth Webb, who creates fabulous stories for children and young adults. Do check out my reviews of her Fleabag and Star Dancer books.
Without further ado, let us find out more about this independent publisher which aims to provide books that deserve their place on reader’s bookshelves.
1. Why did you decide to set up March Hamilton Media?
I felt that the international publishers were ignoring a lot of good writers, possibly because their appeal is to a niche audience and are not going to sell by the million but will be loved and treasured by some readers.
2. What sort of books do you want to publish?
Although my books are targeted at children and teenagers they are mostly crossover books that are enjoyed by adults as well. If I don’t like it then I don’t want to publish it!
3. How do you go about finding and signing authors?
So far they are people I already know. I do not see books as a commodity, if I take on an author it is because I believe in them and want to nurture them so I could not cope with large numbers.
4. Is your experience of marketing what you expected when you started out?
No! I seriously underestimated the difficulty and expense of marketing. Most of my sales are via Amazon or my website. I do supply shops but the cost of distributing is very high.
5. There are a good number of small, independent publishers out there publishing some great works. Do you consider yourself different and, if so, how?
I have great admiration and respect for other small publishers; we are all facing similar problems. There are others like me who take the view of working with authors over the long term so I am not unique but I think we are the minority. Obviously a business has to make money but just because a title does not instantly jump into the bestseller list does not mean it is no good and it does not mean there is not an audience for it.
6. Latest trend or totally original – what sells?
If anyone could predict what would sell then they would clean up! I am not interested in following trends, usually by the time you have identified a trend it is on the way out. I look for something that is different; it may be in an established genre but with a new take on it. For example, detective stories are well established but I’d be happy to publish one that I felt was fresh.
7. Ebook or hard copy – what do your buyers want?
Both. Personally I like physical books, my house is full of them. But when I am travelling, Ebooks make more sense. The cost of distributing books abroad is very high so Ebooks are a way of meeting international demand as well as local demand for people who may not be able to store lots of books.
8. Do you consider March Hamilton Media niche or mainstream?
At the moment, we are very obviously niche but I would have no problem with being mainstream!
9. Collaborative or dictatorial?
I don’t think dictatorial would work.
10. Plans for the future?
I plan to continue with what I’ve been doing but there are other areas to look into. I chose the word media in my business name as I never saw it as just publishing physical books. I am looking into audio books. I have had discussions about interactive Ebooks and most of my titles would make cracking films! (Ok, films should probably come under dreams rather than plans but you have to be open to possibilities).
Thank you Andy for taking the time to answer my questions. You can find out more about this small press, including details of their books, on their website by clicking here: March Hamilton Media
Keep up to date with all of their news via Twitter: March Hamilton (@MarchHamilton)
If you are an independent publisher and would like to be included in this series please check out my introductory post: Shout Out to Independent Publishers