The Biblio File Hosted by Nigel Beale
Twenty - forty minute interviews with accomplished authors, publishers, biblio people, conducted by an excitable bibliophile.

Roderick Cave and George lll

Roderick Cave with George lll at the British Library

The Golden Cockerel Press is one of most important, productive English private presses in the history of fine printing. In 2002 Oak Knoll Press and the British Library co-published the first extensive study of the Golden Cockerel. Written by Roderick Cave, the book is based on interviews and the Press' widely-scattered archives.  Responsible in large part for a revival in wood-engraving, Golden Cockerel Press books published between 1920-1960 contain the work of  brilliant practitioners such as Robert Gibbings (who owned the Press throughout much of the 20s), Eric Gill, David Jones, Agnes Miller Parker, Eric Ravilious, and John Buckland-Wright.  The Press' literary achievement was also significant; it published original manuscripts by writers such as H.E. Bates, A.E. Coppard and T.E. Lawrence.

I met with Roderick Cave recently at the British Library to discuss the works and history of The Golden Cockerel Press. As with all episodes in our Publisher History Series, questions are asked primarily from the perspective of a book collector. Please listen here:

Direct download: Rod_Cave_801015_01.mp3
Category:Publisher's Histories -- posted at: 3:52 PM

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Richard Greene's Boxing the Compass recently won the Governor General's Award for English Poetry. 

Here's how the jury saw it:
"Richard Greene’s Boxing the Compass leaves us feeling unmoored, adrift across time and voice. The matchless long poem at its heart pulls us back to our always-moving selves, on an always-moving earth. We follow him in his offbeat but strangely familiar travels."

Here's my review of the book in the Globe and Mail .

Originally from St. John’s, Newfoundland, now living in Cobourg, Ontario, Richard is not only a poet, he's also a biographer, critic and professor of English at the University of Toronto. He edited Graham Greene: A Life in Letters (2007) and has just written a biography of British poet Edith Sitwell.  Boxing the Compass is his third collection of poetry. Please listen as we talk about it here:

Direct download: Richard_Greene_040205_02.mp3
Category:Poets -- posted at: 5:45 PM

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"Dianne Warren is best known for her short stories and plays. One of her three published plays, Serpent in the Night Sky, was a GG finalist in 1992, and she has written several radio dramas for CBC. She has published three short story collections – one of which, Bad Luck Dog (1993), won three Saskatchewan Book Awards. Her stories can also be found in numerous anthologies, journals and magazines. A long-time resident of Saskatchewan, she brings to her writing an honest portrayal of people in rural communities, conveying their subtle complexities and deep attachments to family farmland. Dianne Warren was born in Ottawa, and is currently living in Regina."

So says the Canada Council. Here’s what Dianne has to say about her 2010 Governor General’s Literary Award winning novel Cool Water:

Direct download: Dianne_Warren_040205_01.mp3
Category:Author Interview -- posted at: 1:19 PM

Iain Stevenson has worked with Longman, Macmillan, Pinter, Leicester University Press, Wiley, and The Stationery Office.  In 1986 he founded the environmental publisher Belhaven Press. He created the award winning MA in Publishing Studies at City University London and was a Professor in the Department of Journalism and Publishing there between 1999 and 2006. He is active on the governing and advisory board of the Publishers Association.

Current research is centred upon the history of British publishing and the applications of new technology in publishing, especially e-books and alternatives to the printed monograph in academic and scholarly communication.
  
We met recently to talk about his excellent new book, Book Makers: British Publishing in the Twentieth Century, published by British Library.

This interview is part of our  Book Publisher Series which focuses on the histories of important British, American and Canadian publishing houses, and how best to go about collecting their works.

Copyright © 2010 by Nigel Beale. www.nigelbeale.com

Subscribe to the Biblio File Podcast here

Please listen here:

Direct download: Iain_Stevenson_801014_01.mp3
Category:Publisher's Histories -- posted at: 3:19 PM


Alexander MacLeod was born in Inverness, Cape Breton

Alexander MacLeod was born in Inverness, Cape Breton and raised in Windsor, Ontario. His award-winning stories have appeared in a variety of leading journals, some have been selected for The Journey Prize Anthology. He holds degrees from the University of Windsor, the University of Notre Dame, and McGill. He currently lives in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia and teaches at Saint Mary’s University in Halifax. Light Lifting, his first book, a collection of short stories, has been shortlisted for Canada's Giller Prize.

We met recently to discuss the work, specifically 'Miracle Mile', the collection's first story. Our conversation touches on technique and themes, the search for significance and meaning, disciplines, how, why and what people care about, and the use of metaphor and pace.

Please listen here (and tune in for the Giller announcement November 7th to see if Alexander wins!)

Direct download: Alexander_Macleod_040106_01_2.mp3
Category:Author Interview -- posted at: 10:26 PM

Toby Faber

Previously managing director of Faber and Faber, Toby Faber is now a non-executive director of the firm and Chairman of its sister company Faber Music. An author in his own right, Faber has written two books Fabergé's Eggs and Stradivari’s Genius: Five Violins, One Cello, and Three Centuries of Enduring Perfection, both successful, neither of them published by Faber. Born in Cambridge, England, in 1965, he lives in London with his wife and daughter.

We met recently to talk about his family's renowned publishing firm, its history and how interested parties might best go about collecting its publications. Our conversation took place at Faber HQ in London specifically at the same table Toby's grandfather Geoffrey frequently sat at years ago with T.S. Eliot, Richard de la Mare and other iconic members of the Faber family.

This interview is part of our  Book Publisher Series which focuses on the histories of important British, American and Canadian publishing houses, and how best to go about collecting their works.

Please listen here:

Direct download: Toby_Faber_edit_801013_02.mp3
Category:Publisher's Histories -- posted at: 1:30 AM

from Brian Busby’s The Dusty Bookshelf

Frank Newfeld  is a Canadian book designer, illustrator, art director and educator.

He has designed over 650 books and won more than 170 Canadian and international awards,  is a former Vice-President of Publishing at McClelland & Stewart and  Head of the Illustration Program at Sheridan College,  and Co-founder of the Society of Graphic Designers of Canada

Newfeld has written and designed three children’s books, two of them published by Oxford University Press and one by Groundwood Books (Douglas & McIntyre). In 2008 his memoir  Drawing on Type was published by Porcupine’s Quill.

We talk here about the origins of his career as a book designer and illustrator, about some of his innovations, about the books he considers his best, and about which of his titles the collector might fruitfully pursue.

Please listen here

Direct download: Frank_Newfeld_800911_01.mp3
Category:Book Designer -- posted at: 4:14 PM

Robert Baldock, MD, Yale University Press

Robert Baldock started working at Yale University Press in London as a history editor in 1985. After serving as editorial director of the publisher’s humanities division, and deputy m.d.,   he was promoted to Managing Director in 2004. His authors on the biography, history, politics, music and religion lists have included Roy Porter, Richard Evans and Diarmuid MacCulloch. Prior to Yale he worked at Weidenfeld & Nicolson and the Harvester Press.

We talk here about his predecessor John Nicol, a brilliant editor and designer who developed Yale’s art and architecture list, Nicol’s triumph Life in the English Country House; about Yale’s partnerships with the world’s great galleries and museums, its hands-on approach to production, E.H.Gombrich’s A Little History of the World (400,000 copies sold, and counting), Strawberry Hill and the Lewis Walpole Library in Connecticut, the Yale series of Younger Poets, the Annals of Communism series, and architectural historian Nikolaus Pevsner’s famous guides.

Please listen here:

Direct download: Robert_Baldock_801013_01.mp3
Category:Publisher's Histories -- posted at: 4:48 PM

"The best book published by Ticknor and Fields: Life of William Hickling Prescott, by George Ticknor (1864)

Michael Winship is a bibliographer and historian of the book – with special expertise in pre-1940 American publishing and book trade history.  He edited and completed the final three volumes of Bibliography of American Literature, for which he received the bibliography prize of the International League of Antiquarian Booksellers, and served as an editor of and contributor to the recently completed 5-volume A History of the Book in America. We talk here, on a windy day (hence the background static)  in Haaavud Yaaaad about collecting books published by Ticknor and Fields, later Houghton Mifflin.

Please listen here:

This interview is part of our  Book Publisher Series which focuses on the histories of important British, American and Canadian publishing houses, and how best to go about collecting their works.

Direct download: Michael_Winship.mp3
Category:Publisher's Histories -- posted at: 5:21 PM

Jack McClelland, [1967]

Carl Spadoni is the Director of the William Ready Division of Archives and Research Collections, McMaster University Library.  In 1999, he was awarded the Marie Tremaine Medal by the Bibliographical Society of Canada for outstanding service to Canadian bibliography and for distinguished publication. He is the author of seven books including the Bibliography of McClelland and Stewart Ltd. Imprints, 1909-1985 (with Judy Donnelly) . We met during the summer in Hamilton to talk about the history of M&S and which books and series from this venerable Canadian publishing house might be worth collecting.

This interview is part of our  Book Publisher Series which focuses on the histories of important British, American and Canadian publishing houses, and how best to go about collecting their works.

Subscribe to the Biblio File Podcast here

Copyright © 2010 by Nigel Beale. www.nigelbeale.com

Please listen here:

Direct download: Carl_Spadoni_MS_070708-171856.mp3
Category:Publisher's Histories -- posted at: 12:36 PM