Every month on the Blog we aim to introduce one of our Archival Collections to our readers. This month our featured collection is the Publishing News Archive.
Publishing News was a magazine was founded in 1979 by Fred Newman and Clive Lavobich for those in the book trade. The aim was to focus on the individuals who worked in the trade and to help publishers and booksellers market and sell books. Originally a fortnightly publication, Publishing News soon became weekly whilst also taking over long running magazine Books and Bookmen. In 1990 the owners of Publishing News launched the British Book Awards, colloquially known as the ‘Nibbies’, to recognise the individuals and companies active in the trade alongside books and authors.
During its run the magazine covered many major stories affecting the book trade as well as broader historical events and economic trends. Important stories include the controversy over Salman Rushdie’s Satanic Verses, the growing trend for independent booksellers and publishers to be taken over by larger corporations, pressure put on the trade by the growth in multimedia resources, and the resurgence in children’s reading with the publication of the Harry Potter books. There are also interviews with a number of well known authors and other celebrities. Publishing News ceased publication in 2008, the year of Fred Newman’s death.
Cataloguing of the Publishing News Archive is well underway, with all the back issues catalogued to the beginning of 1997, and more editions being listed all the time. You can see the catalogued records by visiting our Archives catalogue and searching for ‘Publishing News’. The contents of each edition of the magazine are summarised to allow researchers to find editions on the subjects that interest them. Institutions and individuals mentioned in the pages are also being indexed, which can be searched by clicking in the Person/ Institution box under the Advanced Search option on the Archives catalogue.
As well as the back copies, the Publishing News Archive contains copies of other related magazines such as Books and Bookmen, editor’s research files on prominent publishers and booksellers, items relating to the British Book Awards, and other documents such as cartoons and photographs. The University has also taken over hosting the web archive of Publishing News, featuring news and features from 2001-2008- the web archive can be accessed at http://www.ehaus2.co.uk/pnarchive/
The Publishing News Archive can be accessed in our Archives reading room, to make an appointment email firstname.lastname@example.org.