1 What's your company called?
2 What do you publish?
We publish in several specialist academic areas, including Italian studies and social justice. We also run the Matador self-publishing imprint, organise the annual Self-Publishing Conference and now own and run The Book Guild.
3 What's the story of the company?
Founded in 1996 in Leicester as a traditional publishing company, the company founded the Matador self-publishing imprint in 1999. That has gone on to become the most widely recommended such imprint in the UK, publishing more than 500 new titles each year at the quality end of the market. In 2012 we started the annual Self-Publishing Conference, and in 2015 we acquired The Book Guild.
4 How's business?
The company has grown steadily since 2005, from an annual turnover of £500,000 to more than £2m in 2015. Across the group we publish around 600 books a year in print and electronic formats, and employ 23 full-time staff.
5 What do you enjoy about being independent?
Troubador has always been independently-minded, but we were ostracised from the traditional publishing sector for many years because of our support of self-publishing. Being independent means we can speedily try out new things that may benefit our authors, and drop them quickly if they don’t.
6 What is the biggest single issue in publishing right now?
The biggest issues are discoverability for readers and getting new titles noticed.
7 What one piece of advice would you give to a fellow independent just starting out?
Know the market that you are entering back to front, and concentrate hard on reaching your core audience.
8 What do you get out of belonging to the IPG?