Andrew Howarth has worked as a Senior Sales Manager at CPI UK for the last 12 years and has more than 30 years print experience. He is head of CPI’s Self-Publishing Team, which works with self-publishers and small independent publishers to help produce their books. We asked him and fellow Sales Manager, Ruth Goodman, a few questions about how CPI supports their indie clients and their best tip for authors looking to print for the first time.
Tell us a bit about your role at CPI.
We are part of CPI’s SPTeam (Small/Self Publisher Team) and so our role is to aspire to help any self publisher or new publishing company accomplish what they want to do when getting a book into print.
How does CPI support indie writers and self-publishing clients? How has the range of your print offering evolved in recent years?
We can offer cost effective methods of production because of the broad range of print facilities within the CPI Group, which means a client can print as little or as many copies as required. We have the facilities to print a vast number of book formats (paperback & hardback), mono or 4 colour, with print runs of 1 copy to 1 million (and more!). Production lead-times generally are 10-15 working days. We specialise in print and do not offer other services relating to sales, marketing, PR etc but we can supply advice on who to talk to in these fields.
We do offer an online sales facility if the client is looking to sell the book themselves but doesn’t have the means to store and collect revenue. Although we do not have direct links with retail sales outlets, again, we can provide advice on the best way to approach distribution needs. In addition, we can offer typesetting and formatting if the client is unsure of how best to put their book together ready for printing.
What advice would you give to authors looking to use printers for the first time?
Don’t be afraid to ask lots of questions. Quotes cost nothing and advice is free so use a printer that seems comfortable discussing your project. Take their advice, as they won’t want to print a book that is uneconomical to produce.
Tell us about some interesting / challenging books you’ve helped produce recently.
We’ve printed books for Presidents, music fans, established authors going their own way, mums, dads, teenagers, octogenarians, people who can write, people who cannot (but we never judge!), superstars and nobodies. Each one is interesting and comes with its own challenges. All are treated with the same respect and are given the same level of service. Every new self-publishing client pays their bill upfront and we manufacture the books and deliver them within the time-scale agreed with each customer. More times than not, the client gratefully receives their books and thanks us for the work we’ve done and then moves on to tackle the hardest part of publishing… selling all their copies!
To find out more about their recent projects, check out CPI’s Twitter.