Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Another sad demise, this time in the form of my old employer Publishing News, which closes in a fortnight - full story here. My 4 years there weren't a period of complete joy, due to personality clashes with a senior colleague and the fact that the chairman was one of the most unpleasant individuals it's been my misfortune to encounter. However, on balance, it was fantastic experience, and, without it, I wouldn't be doing what I'm doing now. Despite the chairman's iron whim, which resulted in some pretty rum editorial decisions and a few ulcers from the poor bloody infantry forced to put them into action, it was a good paper.

One story from the PN days. In the run-up to a London Book Fair (or was it Frankfurt?), when reams of picture captions and "At stand E984, the Badger Press will be gassing live badgers to illustrate their new range of Christmas books..." were needed, I felt the aforementioned chairman's breath on the back of my neck. "Kosovo" "Pardon, Fred?" "Kosovo" "Yeees, what about it?" "KOSOVO!" "Sorry, Fred, I have no idea what you're on about". At this he threw a paragraph of copy I'd written the previous week about a book on Kosovan refugees onto my desk, grunted "Picture'd be nice" and stalked off to make someone else's day a misery.