Conference Speakers

February 8th, 2012  |  Published in *

We are delighted to announce our confirmed conference speakers!

Panel 1

Joanna Penn

Joanna Penn is the independent author of thriller novels Pentecost and Prophecy. Her site helps people write, publish and market their books and has been voted one of the Top 10 Blogs for Writers 2 years running.

Follow Joanna on Twitter @thecreativepenn 

Joanna is the keynote speaker for Panel 1.



Alison Baverstock 

Alison Baverstock is the author of The Naked Author: A Guide to Self-Publishing published by A&C Black Publishing. Alison is a publishing consultant, trainer and writer on all aspects of publishing, marketing and reading and will provide useful insights on the challenges authors face when self-publishing their works. In 2007 she won the Pandora Award for a significant contribution to the industry by a woman. She is also the Course Leader for MA Publishing at Kingston University.

Follow Alison on Twitter @alisonbav

Visit her website here.



Philip Jones

Philip Jones is deputy editor of the Bookseller. He also co-hosts and founded the digital blog FutureBook.He joined the Bookseller in 1996 as its financial news reporter, left in 1999, and returned in 20012 to develop and edit He lives with his wife and three children in North London.





Jeremy Leslie

Jeremy runs magCulture, a company specialising in content design for print and digital media. As well as hands-on design, magCulture provides consultancy and advice to publishers and other clients.

Jeremy is a passionate advocate for editorial design, and is a committee member of – a network dedicated to students and professionals sharing the best of international publishing editorial design practice.

He has a keen interest in and involvement with indie magazines and was a co-founder of Colophon.

He has worked for Blitz magazine, The Guardian, Time Out, M-real, Dorling Kindersley, Virgin Atlantic and during the noughties was creative director at John Brown Media. Recent projects include consultancy for Reader’s Digest and the development of the iPad version of Port magazine.

Read his blog at You can follow Jeremy on Twitter @magculture.



Sarah Taylor

Sarah Taylor has 5 years of publishing experience and has been working specifically in self-publishing since leaving university.

As the Reviews Editor of the Self Publishing Magazine and the Marketing Assistant for Matador, Troubador Publishing’s self-publishing imprint, Sarah works closely with self-publishing authors every single day.

She is an avid reader with a keen interest in the publishing industry.

Troubador is an independent UK-based trade and academic publisher, which also offers authors a high quality self-publishing service through the widely recommended Matador imprint.

Visit the website here. You can follow the Matador imprint on Twitter @matadorbooks.



Panel 2


Ewan Morrison 

Ewan Morrison is the author of four novels (Jonathan Cape) and a book of short stories (Chroma). His next novel Close Your Eyes (Cape) will be published in August, while his experimental ebook/app/paperback Tales from the Mall (Cargo) is to be released on April 10th. Ewan has contributed to most of the UK’s broadsheets and writes about the impact of technology on creativity and publishing. Ewan has been touring with the ‘End of Books’ talk that was first given as part of the Guardian debate at Edinburgh International Book Festival.

Follow him on Twitter @sonofmore

Ewan is the keynote speaker of Panel 2.



Sophie Rochester

Sophie Rochester worked for publishers 4th Estate and Jonathan Cape (Random House) before moving to the digital agency Good Technology in 2000. She then moved to Colman Getty working on the Man Booker Prizes and the Hay Festival, before setting up her own consultancy in 2007. She founded The Literary Platform in 2010, a website dedicated to exploring new platforms for literature, which now offers consultancy services to publishers, literary organisations and digital agencies. She is also Director of Fiction Uncovered, described as the ‘Mercury Prize for books’, which celebrates and uncovers the UK’s best contemporary fiction writers.



Anthony Forbes Watson

Anthony Forbes Watson became MD of Pan Macmillan in May 2008 after three years as a publishing consultant, when he worked on strategy projects for Hachette UK, Bloomsbury and Simon & Schuster in New York. Before consulting, Anthony was CEO of Penguin UK which he ran for nine years, and in 2002-3 served as President of the UK Publishers Association.  As an Executive Director of the Longman Group he spent six years as MD of Ladybird Books and another as MD of  Pitman Publishing, having previously started out in publishing at the Oxford University Press before moving on to spend ten years in a series of domestic and international sales and marketing roles at HarperCollins.



 Anna Lewis

Anna Lewis co-founded the book technology company CompletelyNovel in 2008. In 2009 she launched, a community powered book-publishing platform bringing modern publishing tools to an online network of readers, writers and publishers. Her latest venture is ValoBox, a fresh approach to eBooks which combines a pay-as-you-go reading platform with a social retail model which will put customers at the heart of book selling. In 2010 Anna was a finalist for the UK Young Publishing Entrepreneur Award and over the past couple of years she has also managed the Author Blog Awards, the 24 Hour Book Project and has also advised the UK government on digital communication & social media campaigns.

Follow her on Twitter @anna_cn


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