Wednesday, 27 April 2011

New Creative Arts magazine launched

Following on from success in Nottingham, Freeq magazine has expanded to Manchester having spotted the city’s burgeoning creative industry as the perfect audience for developing the print publication.

Freeq launched in 2008 in Nottingham with a unique blend of music, creative arts and social conscience and has gone on to work with some of the world’s biggest charities and most famous artists.

In a period when paid-for magazines are in a state of decline, good quality free magazines are enjoying unprecedented levels of success with readers and sponsors. Freeq has developed an unrivalled reputation for its standard of copy and design, which includes the distinctive wraparound cover artwork produced by artists and illustrators as selected by Freeq’s Art Director Mellisa Harrison.

World famous doodler and illustrator Jon Burgerman has twice contributed cover artwork to the magazine as a sign of his support and the first ever photo cover was provided by renowned rock photographer Jill Furmanovsky after meeting Editor Sam Borrett at Glastonbury in 2009.

On the magazine’s most significant advancement since launching Sam Borrett said: “We know Manchester and the surrounding area is a hotbed for creative individuals all contributing to a cottage industry that benefits from high quality media exposure such as that we and other outlets can provide. There is often no outlet for up and coming talent and we continue to spotlight relatively unknown artists alongside coverage of more established creatives and musicians.

“Our unique social conscience aspect of the magazine brings important current affairs onto the radar of people who wouldn’t necessarily hear about these issues through the mainstream media. We’ve helped educate people about ethical fashion, climate change, the work of Christian Aid and Oxfam among others.”

Freeq magazine will be working with Arts Council North West to promote their funded projects and is looking for other suitable partners for sponsorship and cross-promotion in an effort to further develop Manchester’s creative infrastructure.

For any advertising, contribution or editorial queries please email or visit

Tuesday, 19 April 2011

fleet street fox: My phone hack hell.

fleet street fox: My phone hack hell.: "LET me be clear from the start - I'm a phone hacker. My editor has never asked me to hack a phone. I've never thought any story I've been w..."

(EDITOR: An interesting take on the so-called phnoe hacking scandal that is exciting certain parts of the British media, from a fellow journalist)

New Richard Burton biography to be published in May

The Myrtle Press is publishing Tom Rubython’s new book, And God Created Burton, on 15th May 2011.

The publishers state that the 864-page biography is the first proper and fully detailed account of the life of Richard Burton, who died on August 1984, aged only 58. In 49 carefully researched and written chapters, every aspect of Burton’s life is looked and examined. The book is over 300,000 words long.

The book is described by the publishers as a “sweeping saga spanning 1898 to 1984 - stretching from the mining areas of South Wales to the film sets of Hollywood.” The book is a sensational account that tells Burton’s story from A to Z and leaves nothing out – good or bad. The publishers are confident that there has been nothing like it before.

The biography focuses on three main areas:

1) Burton’s personal life

He married five times and simultaneously carried the life of a playboy for virtually the entire length of his marriages, sleeping with an estimated 2,500 different women throughout his life. The book examines in detail the six main relationships of his life: his four wives (Sybil Williams, Elizabeth Taylor [twice], Suzy Hunt and Sally Hay) and his two significant mistresses (actresses Claire Bloom and Susan Strasberg).

2) Burton’s finances

By his own account, Burton earned the sum of US$75 million in his career, stretching from 1950 to 1984. In today’s money, that sum equates to nearly US$500 million, making him easily Britain’s highest ever paid actor. The new book dissects in details those earnings, his expenses, and how he lost most of it in his four divorces.

3) Burton’s acting career

Destined to go down the Welsh pits and become a coal miner just like all his ancestors and five of his seven brothers before him, Burton instead was mentored by four brilliant men and one brilliant woman who ultimately took him out of South Wales, onto the London stage and towards Hollywood stardom.

Other highlights

*For the first time,  we see presented the complete story of the terrible hatred that he felt for his natural father, leading him to decline to attend the latter’s funeral. The author describes how his father’s brutal behaviour, previously airbrushed by the family, effectively killed Burton’s mother.

* For the first time the full story of Richard Burton’s effective adoption by a schoolteacher, called Philip Burton, and the amazing process that saw his strong Welsh accent replaced with a voice that had no rival in its resonance and diction.

*The alcohol addiction that dogged Burton’s life and the continual arguments with his wives, who sought to clean him up and help him rebuild his life after drink forced his career into the gutter in the late seventies.

* For the first time, Burton’s remarkable intellect is analysed and discussed by the people who knew him best. The author concludes that there has never been a more intelligent actor in the history of theatre and film.

* The most comprehensive account of the last days of Burton’s life and the people he left behind.

* 64 pages of photographs, over 200 in all, chronicling Richard Burton’s extraordinary life from start to finish.

ISBN: 78-0-9565656-2-4
On sale from Sunday 15th May

Monday, 18 April 2011

UK publisher makes inroads to US, Canadian market

The UK-based Biteback Media publishing group, which publishes Total Politics magazine in the UK, has expanded internationally with the purchase of three magazine titles.

Namely Campaigns & Elections (US), Campaigns & Elections (Canada) and Campaigns & Elections (Latin America). The purchases are via Biteback’s US arm Political Holdings Limited US Inc.
Campaigns & Elections (US) was founded in 1980 by Stanley Foster Reed. It covers the strategies, techniques, and personalities of modern politics.A spokesman for Biteback said: "It is read by tens of thousands of federal, state and local elected officials, candidates for public office, party activists, issue campaigners, political consultants, campaign staffs, lobbyists, PAC directors, university professors, news reporters and numerous behind-the-scenes opinion makers."

The acquisition was masterminded by Shane Greer, the CEO of Biteback Media and President of Political Holdings Limited US Inc., who will act as publisher of the Campaigns & Elections group of magazines. 

Mr Greer said: “This is a busy time for Total Politics and the Campaigns & Elections group of magazines. With the 2012 presidential election round the corner, and the editorial and event synergies between the UK, US, Canadian and Latin American titles the next couple of years promise to be an exciting period for the group.”

The founder and publisher of Total Politics, and MD of the Biteback Group, Iain Dale said: “I’m delighted to see Campaigns & Elections become part of the group. It’s a natural fit and the opportunities are tremendous. 

"It will also give Biteback Publishing a US base and enable it to expand its US book publishing activities. I look forward to seeing the group’s magazine interests expand and develop under Shane’s leadership.”

Mr Dale is a highly influential political blogger, commentator and broadcaster in the UK.

How to succeed in the hidden job market. New book tells you how

To Get A Job You'll Love
Author John Lees points out that although the hidden job market might be unfair, it is also very important. Vital, as he puts it. And he should know, he is a best selling careers author and career transition expert.

Many people who lost their jobs this year – especially those in the public sector - are turning their backs on new opportunities because of the way they feel about the “hidden” job market according to leading careers expert, John Lees, author of How to Get a Job You’ll Love (McGraw-Hill).

“It is a fact that the majority of jobs are not advertised,” says Lees. “If you only ever respond to job advertisements you’re seriously limiting the opportunities you could be pitching for. Most people don’t recognise that there is a hidden jobs market and those that do simply don’t know how to access it. The truth is there are more job vacancies than people realise. Job seekers must use lateral and creative thinking as a career management tool.”

Workers familiar with an equal opportunities environment often believe this approach to job seeking – via the hidden jobs market - is unfair. They object to what they see as ‘old school tie’ networking, believing that the only proper way to fill a role is through open, transparent advertised position, but this view fails to take account of several important factors:

• Even in a buoyant market most employers will fill jobs without advertising them. In a tough market, it’s even easier to do so.
• Even public sector employers fill jobs on this basis.
• In the new world of social media, connections matter more than tracking advertised roles.
• New and smaller organisations are more likely to fill jobs by word of mouth.

Lees adds, “The absence of advertised positions makes it easy to believe there are no jobs out there and bemoaning the state of the market is a great excuse for a low-octane job search, yet there are ways to crack this market with some proactivity and effort on the job seekers part.”


• Breaking into the hidden market isn’t about old school networks or favours, nor is it only open to those who are great at self-promotion. It’s about meeting new people, and making sure they remember just a few positive pieces of information about you and it is up to you what memorable trail you leave.

• The best definition of the hidden job market is what people say about you when you’re not in the room. Make sure you leave every meeting, meet up, virtual or otherwise with a lasting positive first impression.

• Getting mentioned in a network isn’t a matter of chance. Tell people what you’re looking for and what you have to offer. Be brief, upbeat and very clear, and your message will get remembered. Keep it relevant and leave neediness and emotion at the door. You’re selling yourself.

• Remember that most brand new roles, particularly those in small employers, are difficult to find by any other method. Even in the public sector people are often ‘tipped off’ about positions well before they are advertised. The fact that people don’t generally know this doesn’t mean it doesn’t happen.

• Be open about what you are doing, but ask for help with research (into sectors and organisations) rather than asking for vacancies.

• Begin with contacts made in your last job, and anyone with professional experience in your circle of family and friends.

• Have a well written, current and relevant CV to hand in case you are asked for it, but otherwise don’t ask directly for CV advice or job leads – the indirect approach works better. Develop your confidence in this approach – practice.

• Find ways of reaching decision makers when they have may have a problem or an opportunity. Good research will help. Be on the ball. Go the extra mile in your research.

• Your last question when networking should always be to ask for recommendations of other people to talk to. People are generally happy to help when asked.

• Remember other spin-offs: word of mouth is the primary method that candidates get recommended to head-hunters and many employers.

• You can also ask for the names of recommended recruitment consultants.
Getting remembered isn’t a matter of chance – it’s about you planting an idea and impression in the right minds.

Stockist Info: How to Get a Job You’ll Love by John Lees, McGraw-Hill, £12.99.
ISBN:978 0077 129934

Thursday, 7 April 2011

New Sc-Fi voice brings 3004

"Gripping - and deeply moving - teenage fantasy, from a fresh new talent..."

London, a thousand years from now. The capital sprawls across the whole of England and every last bit of land is taken up by human habitation. Both London and Paris are protected from terrorist and criminal infiltration by an invisible shield and the people live under constant surveillance. Everyone, though, is happy, or appears to be. Law breakers are cast out of the shield into the wilderness and are left there to fend for themselves.

Somewhere in the French wilderness, two sixteen-year-old Londoners are about to embark on the task that every boy their age must pass. They couldn't be more different: Kayleb is clever but puny; Rowan is strong and obstinate. They've never been friends - far from it - but they quickly realise that, if they are going to survive the bloody dangers ahead of them, they are going to have to learn to trust each other - and fast!

A thrilling, powerfully imagined sci-fi adventure that will keep readers guessing until the very last page. (£17.99 HB)

Natasha Murray, originally from London, has led a varied life, having worked as a flower stall worker, PA/administrator, full-time mum and artist. She has exhibited and sold many of her paintings. Natasha lives in Horsham, West Sussex.

Sunday, 3 April 2011

That's Books is back

After an absence of 11 months, That's Books (previously also known as Bookworms) is back.