We bite our nails on the day that the British Book Award shortlistings – the Nibbies – come out. These are the trade book awards, and we always work hard on our entries for the awards to try to showcase what we’ve done in the previous year. Writing them is a great way, actually, to reflect on the year, and is always a last minute, burning-the-midnight-oil sort of exercise as we pull together information to demonstrate that we’re worthy of inclusion.
We are so delighted to be shortlisted in four categories this year.
Camilla Reid is shortlisted for Editor of the Year. Camilla is a founding director of Nosy Crow, and her pre-school board books and early picture books include the Felt Flaps series, Bizzy Bear series, and Pip and Posy series (which hit the small screen for the first time on Monday). The judges said: “Nosy Crow’s co-founder and editorial director took the pre-school and novelty list to new heights in 2020. Benji Davies’ Bizzy Bear series was her standout hit, with all the international appeal, longevity and recognisable Nosy Crow feel that has made the business so successful.”
The rights team – Michela Pea, Erin Murgatroyd, Nuria Marti i Pampalona and Lucy Dunnet – are shortlisted for Rights Professional of the Year – one of just two teams to make it to the shortlist. The judges said: “Nosy Crow turned ten in 2020, and owes its phenomenal success over the decade to buying world rights in nearly all its content, then squeezing every last drop of sales from them. Its four-strong team—Michela Pea, Erin Murgatroyd, Nuria Marti i Pampalona and Lucy Dunnet—grew translation and coedition sales by half, focusing on its most regular partners and finding new potential in the backlist. Its flexible approach and interactive rights guide went down well with its many partners, among whom it enjoys huge respect.”
The export team, now boosted by Damon Greeney’s arrival, but, through 2020, made up of just Catherine Stokes with Maddie Price, with the support of export consultant, Peter Newsom, is shortlisted for the Export prize for companies with export turnover of less than £10m per year. This is a prize we were very proud to win last year. The judges said: “Last year’s winner was an even greater international force in 2020, growing export sales by well over 50% despite a drastic reduction in the volume of travel done by its energetic team. The excellent relationships Nosy Crow has built with overseas customers over its first decade in business paid dividends, and it was constantly alert and responsive to their needs as their various markets went in and out of lockdowns. A revamped website, newsletter, and Instagram and WeChat activity all helped to cement connections, as did the investment in more video and other digital assets, and flip-book catalogues, to help customers visualise its books. Exports to China, South Korea and many other Asian territories rocketed, and it was particularly pleased with sales in territories that it has only recently brought in-house.”
Massive congratulations to all of them!
And the whole company is shortlisted for Children’s Publisher of the Year, a prize we have won twice before in our ten-year history. The judges said: “Nosy Crow, the 2017 and 2019 winner in this category, as well as the 2020 Independent Publisher of the Year Nibbie recipient, has doubled in size in the past three years alone. Its growth in international markets — from which three-quarters of its sales now come — was remarkable.”
It is excellent to have these acknowledgments of individual contributions as well as the work of the whole team.
If we were all in the office, we’d raise a glass. With most of us at home, we might have a biscuit with our tea.