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The Make Books Travel Podcast

42 EpisodesProduced by Marleen SeegersWebsite

The Make Books Travel podcast offers a behind-the-scenes look at the international publishing scene. Literary agent Marleen Seegers interviews the industry's key players, who all have one thing in common: they make books travel, for instance from one language to another, from manuscript to published… read more


S1 E21: How Publishing Trends Are Influenced by Historical Context. A Conversation with Daniel Bunyard

Welcome to episode #21 of the Make Books Travel podcast.

Today's guest is Daniel Bunyard, Publishing Director and Head of Non-Fiction Publishing at Penguin Michael Joseph in the UK.

Dan has been looking in detail at historical sales of books, in an effort to better understand what people’s book buying motivations and patterns are. Why did certain books sell well at a given moment in time, and why did others hardly sell any copies during that same period?

And what book buying patterns are we seeing in times of Corona?

These are fascinating and important questions to ask for us publishing folks. So let’s listen to my conversation with Daniel Bunyard!

Show Notes

  • About Daniel:

Daniel Bunyard is a Publishing Director and Head of Non-fiction publishing at Penguin Michael Joseph, a division of Penguin Random House. After starting his career in academic publishing, working on history and philosophy titles at Palgrave Macmillan, he worked successively for John Blake, Orion and HarperCollins before moving to Penguin as a commissioning editor for commercial non-fiction.

  • About his research:

Daniel's paper on how publishing trends are influenced by historical context has not yet been published. I will update this information with the references once it's available. 

In the meantime you can watch his interview about this topic with Angus Phillips, who runs the journal that is publishing his article.

End of season 1

On a side note, after today’s episode I’m putting my recordings on hold for a short while. Even though I won’t be traveling, things will get a little crazy and intense in the weeks leading up to and during the virtual Frankfurt Book Fair mid-October, with plenty of video meetings and such. 

Over the next couple of weeks, I will gradually move to European time, so I can make the most of this important book fair season. I'm in the Pacific time zone, which means there's a 9-hour time difference to overcome. It will be a first to be working on night shifts, and I’m curious to see how it will play out… In any case the podcast will return after the Frankfurt Book Fair with a second season!

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