Wednesday, January 28, 2009

An Intern's Experience by Kathrin Malzkorn

I have been an intern at Aurum Press for 3 weeks now, this being my last week. Today I would like to explain why I chose to be an Intern at Aurum. I am from Munich in Germany and am studying German and English Literature in my third year. Since it is obligatory in my studies to go abroad for six months, I came to London to gain some work experience in the English-speaking world. As a student of German and English it goes without saying that Literature and Publishing always attracted me and I would love to start a career in the hopes of eventually becoming an Editor. After already gaining some experience at Random House in Munich, I started working in London at Andrew Nurnberg Associates, a Literary Agency.

Now, after working mainly with fiction, I was keen on gaining insight into a non-fiction publishing house. I particularly dreamt of working in a place that publishes books I actually like and find interesting to read, because what fascinates me most about non-fiction publishing is the extraordinary possibility of bringing together a love of books and a love of what the book is about, may it be hiking or photography. Mainly attracted by the excellent biographies of Aurum Press – one of my favourites is ‘Conversations with Woody Allen’ – I soon discovered the broad range of books Aurum is publishing and what a challenge this diversity of books is for the editors here.

That is the reason why Aurum Press was, at least for me, the perfect place for an internship in publishing. During my time at Aurum I got to know the many processes involved in publishing and especially ways of promoting the final product. The highlight of every week is the editorial meeting. Discussions about new, creative and original ideas for books, marketing plans and publishing processes revealed how publishers work and which aspects play a role in their decisions. I loved the fact that the publishers really believe in the success of every book they publish. Their trust in a book or in an idea has been always the decisive factor whether books get published or not. This love and faith in their own books is visible in all of the publications at Aurum. If you learn as an intern how much work, effort and passion lies in each book, respect for the profession of publishing increases immensely. And the experience of being at Aurum has certainly increased my respect for publishing and my ultimate hopes for a publishing career.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

We are all very excited about the upcoming release of Paddy Ashdown's memoirs, A Fortunate Life. It promises an intriguing insight into the political landscape of the late 1980s and 1990s. As high representative in Bosnia - Herzegovina (2002-2006) and recommended for the role of UN representative in Afghanistan as well as Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, Lord Ashdown was deeply involved in global and British politics. This is a highly readable, fascinatingly detailed memoir of a life of a unique politician.

The Autobiography of Paddy Ashdown: A Fortunate Life will be published in April 2009 by Aurum Press and is priced at £20.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

After working on the look and style of the blog, which readers hopefully will find attractive, it is time to turn attention to the (even more) important stuff - the content. Every month I will update you on new publications with links to Waterstone's and Amazon. There will be updates on book signings and launch parties to coincide with book publications.

I am also very excited about getting some of our authors to write some articles for the blog, and am very pleased to say that Shelina Janmohamed will be the first to contribute to the Aurum blog. Shelina is the author of Love in a Headscarf, her memoir about finding love as a Muslim woman in Britain, which is out in February. She already runs a very successful blog called Spirit21 which was named Best Blog and Best Female Blog at the 2008 Brass Centre Awards (the link is on our blogroll). Keep checking this space for her article.

And finally, next to news, updates and author contributions, I am also planning some insights into publishing, particularly aimed at anyone with a keen interest in publishing who might be keen to know how things work at Aurum Press.

One last thing: both our January titles, Lucky Kunst and The Desert War, arrived fresh from the printers this week. Both look fantastic, and we are expecting big things from both titles. Keep an eye out for them in your local bookstore or order online (links below).

Thursday, January 8, 2009

January Titles

2009 is here with a number of great titles. January starts us off with two books, both ground breaking in their own way, on two completely diverse topics: War and Art.

Alan Moorehead's fascinating study of the 1940 North Africa Campaign is being re-issued by Aurum under the title The Desert War - The Classic Trilogy on the North African Campaign 1940-1943. The author was sent to cover the North Africa campaign by the Daily Express in 1940, and his experiences form the basis of his Desert War Trilogy which has become a classic of military history.

The Desert War by Alan Moorehead is issued in paperback at £10.99. You can order copies at

Lucky Kunst: The Rise and Fall of Young British Art by Gregor Muir is also out this month. This is the first history of the movement called Young British Artists (YBA), written by a man who knew Damien Hirst, Tracey Emin, Sarah Lucas, the Chapman brothers, etc. long before they were famous. In this hilarious and picaresque story, Muir charts the course of these artists through ten years from their beginnings in Shoreditch to the establishment of the White Cube Gallery and the seminal 'Sensation' show at the Royal Academy in 1997.

'(Lucky Kunst)...explains really clearly and accurately what was happening at the time because Gregor was actually there.' Tracey Emin, The Independent (January 8th 2009) - Check out Tracey's full article on Lucky Kunst via this link:

Lucky Kunst by Gregor Muir is issued in paperback on 26th January at £14.99. You can order copies at