'The best books, reviewed with insight and charm, but without compromise.'
- author Jackie French

Sunday 15 March 2015

Interview: Di Bates and Buzz Words

KBR is delighted to welcome longtime KBR friend Di Bates, with this interview on industry e-zine Buzz Words!

How and when did Buzz Words begin?

Many years ago, when I lived in a remote region, I felt isolated from the children’s book community. I decided to make regular contact with those I knew through a free, weekly newsletter about anything related to the children’s book industry.

Eventually I had hundreds of people receiving it. As it became burdensome to produce, I handed over the email database and format to Jackie Hosking who called it Pass It On (PIO).

A few years later, in 2006, I founded Buzz Words, which is a subscriber-based, twice-monthly online magazine exclusively for people in the Australian children’s book industry. The aim of the magazine is to keep readers abreast of current happenings in the children’s book industry, including opportunities for possible publication.

How would you summarize all the wonderful information Buzz Words provides?
Every issue contains the following: local and international news, publishing house profile/s, short profiles of people in the industry, an interview, opportunities, markets, competitions and awards, recommended books and websites/blogs, festivals and conferences, workshops, article/s, subscribers’ achievements, letters to the editor (have your say), and of course book reviews. There are lots of links provided to all of the above.

Who would be interested in Buzz Words?
Subscribers include authors, writers, illustrators, librarians and publishers – in fact, anyone interested in children’s books.

What is unique about Buzz Words?
In each issue there is an interview with someone in the industry who is rarely heard from. This includes publishers such as Dyan Blacklock (Omnibus), Eva Mills (Allen & Unwin) and Margrete Lamond (Little Hare) as well as book reviewers, booksellers, librarians, designers, etc. Buzz Words tries to give book creators as much information as possible (such as markets and other opportunities) to help them further their careers.

The other unique aspect of Buzz Words is that it has a children’s book review blog. Over thirty Australian publishing houses send their recent titles to Buzz Words reviewers who read and review their books within a month. Their reviews are then posted on the blog and linked to the magazine. I believe Buzz Words reviews more children’s books than any other organisation in Australia.

How can people subscribe to Buzz Words?
Before subscribing, you can receive a free copy of Buzz Words to see if it fits your needs. Just send an email to dibates@outlook.com. The cost is just $48 for 24 issues per annum (and it's a tax deduction!).