Nina Douglas – Senior Publicity Manager
Hello! My name is Nina Douglas and I head up the PR for Indigo (Orion’s YA list) and Orion Children’s Books. I work with another publicist – to date this has been a press officer, but I’m thrilled that I’m now in the process of recruiting someone with more experience to work for me! We sit within the Orion Group General Division PR team, which is seven publicists in total and also as a part of the Orion Children’s/ Indigo team, which is also around seven people covering editorial and rights working exclusively on those lists. Marketing, sales, export, production and design are all part of the main group departments and cover more than just children’s and YA books within their roles. In short, we’re a small dedicated team, within a larger dedicated team at Orion on Upper St Martin’s Lane.
My job changes every day; I’ve been working in books PR almost since I left university (UEA) and have just about reached my ten year anniversary in the industry, which is a frightening thought. Both everything and nothing has changed in that time – we work hard at ensuring that we find the opportunities to get our authors, and their work out there and in front of the right audiences in as many ways as possible. The digital world has really opened up the possibilities for a children’s/ YA books publicist. We work hard at talking to readers where they like to spend time and are constantly looking at new ways to engage. This is especially key as traditional media space – which could be tough to crack for a children’s or YA author anyway –for books seems to shrink away before our eyes (though thankfully there are many outlets that buck that trend). Alongside marketing, and in particular the brilliant Jen who looks after the Indigo list, we currently are building our YA communities alongside our sister list at Gollancz. We have just started a new Tumblr and Pinterest to add to our communities on Facebook has been established for quite some time and we have a growing and enthusiastic army of readers and reviewers there) and Twitter (@the_orionstar, @fiercefiction, @ninadouglas).
If I could wish for something, it would be a time turner (Hermione-style) as there never seems to be enough time to do all that we would want to do. Any random day could see us working away (either literally at an event, or for an event) at festivals, launch readings, awards, conferences, special events, press and media pitching, blog tour creation, writing materials, blog posts (I’ve just started guest posting on the Gollancz blog too – www.gollancz.co.uk), planning, budgeting, reporting back, in journalist meetings… the list could go on and on. So if anyone happens to have a time-tuner contact… you know where to find me.
2013 has an amazing list of books to tempt readers. Here are my Indigo (and a Gollancz) picks through to the early summer and one or two later titles to look out for…
Dystopian settings allow for discussion of big issues wrapped in fast paced adventures, in this highly original second novel from Sara Grant including communication to the future and faith. (May)
Optioned for film by DREAMWORKS and DAVID HEYMAN (say no more!) this epic, Russian inspired fantasy has already captured the hearts, minds and creative instincts of an army of fans. A New York Times bestseller, a coming of age adventure, a wonderful and complete other world, and one of the most compelling villains you will have read in a long time. Shadow & Bone was previously The Gathering Dark in the UK, but from the paperback will have a global identity (one of my books of 2012) (June) @lbardugo
I truly cannot think of anyone better to twist and subvert a reader’s expectations of fairy tales. Just wait til you read Poison… Sarah Pinborough kept me entirely enthralled; I raced through the first story in one ‘over-far-too-soon’ sitting – brilliantly done. (April onwards)
The second part of the adventure that began in MASQUE OF THE RED DEATH – the Edgar Allan Poe inspired dark and debauched dystopian tale. Araby Worth has some very difficult decisions to make and I can’t wait to find out where they take her…
Three words: just read it. Powerful, heartbreaking, real – not a genre book, but an incredible read and stunning debut. (May)
Brief mentions also must go out to KETCHUP CLOUDS (out in paperback in July) by Annabel Pitcher (@apitcherauthor) – a wonderful tale of secrets, lies, guilt and murder. To SOUL STORM (August) by Kate Harrison(@katewritesbooks) – the brilliant Black-Mirror-esque take on our current obsession with social media and celebrity, and a murder mystery sustained over three books! To CRUEL SUMMER (August)– the new novel inspired by Point Horror by the first ever male Queen of Teen nominee, James Dawson (@_jamesdawson). To HAZE, the second book in the wonderful REPHAIM series by Australian YA author Paula Weston (@paulaweston). To the highly anticipated new YA, THE COLDEST GIRL IN COLDTOWN (September) by Holly Black (@hollyblack). And finally to SHE IS NOT INVISIBLE (October) – something really quite different from the master of gothic, Marcus Sedgwick (@marcusedgwick).
Thanks for indulging my super long list of recommends – and hope to meet some of you on twitter, facebook, tumblr…
We have TWO (2) sets of Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo and If You Find me by Emily Murdoch to give away. This giveaway is open to UK Residents only and ends 31st May 2013. Please leave a comment to enter.
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