Thoughts on Digital Publishing: Nosy Crow Interview

In advance of the Frankfurt Book Fair, we decided to talk with innovative thought leaders about the future of the industry, the role of digital and cross-platform publishing.

The first interview in our series is with Kate Wilson, Managing Director at Nosy Crow. Kate is a publishing industry veteran with 25 years of experience. Before founding Nosy Crow she held senior management roles including Managing Director of Macmillan Children’s Books and Group Managing Director of Scholastic UK Ltd.

Nosy Crow is an independent publishing company that offers exciting children’s books and digital content from a variety of creative authors. The company was ranked the 2012 and 2013 Children’s Publisher of the Year by the Independent Publishers Guild (IPG). It publishes commercial fiction and non-fiction books for children ages 0 to 14, with fiction books available in both print and e-book format. Nosy Crow also offers interactive apps that are custom-built for tablet and smart phone users.

In your opinion, what are the best examples of digital publishing in action?

I think our award-winning apps are pretty great because they’re reading experiences blurring the edges between books and games. Digital has impacted so many aspects of publishing – the nature of content itself (things like apps), the delivery mechanisms (“straight” e-book versions of print titles), and so many aspects of marketing.

What do you envision for the future of reading?

In the children’s book area, parents will still want printed books, particularly novelty and picture books. And, indeed, “straight” e-books for children have been slow to take off. But I think there are opportunities for making reading more personal, interactive, game-like and with enhanced interactive features.

What they hope to see/ achieve at Frankfurt this year?

We hope to sell lots and lots of rights and co-editions in our print books. We have a handful of established partnerships for our apps in Germany, France and the Netherlands. However, we are always looking for other committed, knowledgeable and skilled partners. Despite a lot of expressed interest, we’re haven’t found the right partners elsewhere.

How do you work with digital suppliers?

We make our own apps in-house, from start to finish.

What do you think is the biggest enhancement/ most transforming thing seen in the digital publishing space this year?

I’d have to say Matchbook, and also the strengthening of Amazon’s position overall following the legal challenges in the US.

Visit our blog tomorrow for the second interview in the series and more insights about cross-platform publishing and digital strategy with Dan Franklin, Digital Publisher at Random House Group. Email us at to speak to our books team.

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