Another testament to England’s South East as a major centre for books and literature is this fantastic organisation, which supports people looking to succeed in the competitive world of publishing. Whilst its largest branch is in London, the Oxford division is hot on its heels due to being both a major centre for publishing and home to one of the world’s most renowned publishing courses at Oxford Brookes University. Society members can brush up on their knowledge of all areas of the industry through frequent talks and events by key speakers, as well as network with some of the most influential people in publishing. Of course having fun and meeting new people – who may well be future colleagues – is also a major incentive to join and there is the chance to do just that at the popular pub quiz (all questions are, of course, publishing-related!) and the society’s book club – as well as many other exciting events throughout the year.
Set up in 1984 and originally aimed at the 18-35 age bracket, the society is now opened to anyone interested in working in the industry, who has not done so for more than 10 years. This means a vibrant mix of students, career-changers, recent graduates and those already in the industry who just want to hone their skills, continue meeting new people and indulging their passion for all things publishing. Membership is only £30 a year (£24 for students or unwaged) and the benefits are endless: monthly lectures on key topics within the current publishing scene, 5 issues of the knowledgeable and engaging society magazine Inprint, full access to the website’s job database, annual conferences and many trade discounts including 10% off at Foyles bookshop and exclusive offers for related training programmes, subscriptions and events. And, of course, there are countless opportunities to meet likeminded people and have a good time – priceless!
Right now it’s the London Book Fair, one of the UK’s most important booktrade events, and the SYP will be there tomorrow with two invaluable seminars on getting into, and ahead in, the publishing industry. Whilst the registration for London Book Fair is £30 (and must be paid in advance), the SYP seminars are free to both members and non-members so, if you can, why not register today and pop along tomorrow morning to receive some great advice – and have a mooch around all the other exciting bookish things going on while you’re there!