Louie Stowell is an editorial director for Ladybird Trade. You can follow her on Twitter (@Louiestowell).
What do you do?
I oversee Ladybird’s publishing that’s aimed at “trade” (e.g. Waterstones, supermarkets) rather than educational customers.
How did you get into publishing?
This will show how long ago it was... I applied for a job ad in The Guardian!
How has the industry changed since then?
I’ve definitely seen a rise of internships. We’ve also seen the rise of digital, but that hasn’t impacted children’s publishing especially. We’re starting to see the increase of audio now, and I can’t wait to see where that takes us.
What is your boldest prediction for publishing in 2030?
Given the progression of climate change, we might be publishing books on survival and how to reshape society in collapse.
What is the best piece of career advice you’ve received?
Go for jobs you don’t tick all the boxes for. Arrogant underqualified people will go for them if you don’t.
What skills have helped you get ahead?
People skills and thinking on my feet. Plus, not being precious about ideas and assuming there’ll be another one along in a minute.
Have you been mentored, and how has it supported your career progression?
Yes! And it’s definitely helped – it helped me identify what I want, what’s not important, and how to build on my achievements and skills.
Why do you love to work in publishing?
The people and the ability to work with ideas. Ideas are what matter to me. Not books, actually – I love ideas in all media. Books just happen to be a medium I enjoy, and that doesn’t require quite as much money to get ideas off the ground as, say, television!