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Saraband wins Saltire Society Scottish Publisher of the Year Award

We are very excited to have won the inaugural Saltire Society Scottish Publisher of the Year Award, which was announced by Fiona Hyslop, the Cabinet Secretary for Culture and External Affairs, on Friday at the Edinburgh International Book Festival.

The award, given to the company with the most exciting and progressive developmental story to tell over the previous year, was accepted and warmly welcomed by a delighted Sara Hunt.

She said: "I’m thrilled that we have been honoured with this award, especially because it is dedicated to the memory of Dr Gavin Wallace, whose knowledge, encouragement and support of everyone associated with Scottish literature and publishing was absolutely incomparable. It is to the credit of our authors, our small and dedicated team, and the partners we work collaboratively with. It’s also a huge surprise given that the achievements of the shortlisted companies are all so impressive."

The award judges said that Saraband has taken "huge steps" in changing the focus on its publishing list and formats in response to industry changes, and to have continued during 2012/2013 to move Scottish authors to the heart of its business. Saraband was selected to represent Scotland's creative industries at the Scotland House showcase during the 2012 Olympics.

We were also pleased to see that our colleagues at Floris Books received a commendation for their fantastic work "revitalising classic Scottish children's novels and authors for a new generation".

Also shortlisted were BackPage Press, Barrington Stoke, Edinburgh University Press and Freight Books, and we’d like to offer our congratulations to them.

Jim Tough, executive director of the Saltire Society, said the society had been encouraged by the number, range and quality of applications for the award. Creative Scotland chief executive Janet Archer said: "Saraband and the other shortlisted publishers represent a Scottish publishing industry in very good health."

The judges were: Jenny Brown (literary agent), Rosamund de la Hey (Main Street Trading Company), Claire Malcolm (New Writing North), Marion Sinclair (Publishing Scotland's Chief Executive), Professor Claire Squires (University of Stirling) and Aly Barr (Creative Scotland).

The award is supported by Creative Scotland and Publishing Scotland, and was launched this year in order to celebrate excellence and innovation in Scottish publishing. This year’s award was dedicated to Dr Gavin Wallace in recognition of his enormous contribution and commitment to Scottish Literature.

Listen to Kari Herbert's Guardian Edinburgh books podcast

If you head over to The Guardian's website, you'll be able to listen a special podcast featuring Kari Herbert speaking at this year's Edinburgh International Book Festival. Kari appeared at the Festival on Sunday to talk about her new book Heart of the Hero, which is a fascinating history of the women who inspired the great polar explorers such as Shackleton and Scott.

Kari's assertion at the Festival that Sir Ernest Shackleton only made his first expedition in order to impress his lover aroused the interest of the media, with reports in The Telegraph, Daily Mail and Canada's Star Phoenix.

Kari was in conversation with The Guardian's Claire Armitstead, along with Judith Mackrell, who has written a book about the flappers girls of the 1920s. 

Saraband on shortlist for Scottish Publisher of the Year

We're delighted to announce that Saraband has made it to the shortlist of the inaugural Saltire Society Scottish Publisher of the Year Award, which was launched this year to celebrate excellence and innovation in Scottish publishing.

Saraband joins five other companies on the shortlist, which exemplifies the dynamic and groundbreaking work being done by Scottish publishers to engage new readers and take on new challenges.

The panel of judges described Saraband as ‘a company that has shown shrewd and strategic business thinking in a shifting context. They are collaborative, innovative and are distinguished by fresh thinking in their use of digital technology. Their move to new approaches still has the interest of authors at its heart. Typically of many SMEs in the industry, they punch impressively above their weight.’

The winner of the Award will be announced by the Cabinet Secretary for Culture and External Affairs, Fiona Hyslop MSP, at the Publishing Scotland Reception held during the Edinburgh International Book Festival on the 23rd August 2013 from 7pm.

The other shortlisted publishers include BackPage Press, Barrington Stoke, Edinburgh University Press, Floris Books and Freight Books. All will have their works on sale in The Book Shop at the Edinburgh International Book Festival.

The Saltire Society Scottish Publisher of the Year Award is supported by Creative Scotland and Publishing Scotland. The Award is dedicated to Dr Gavin Wallace in recognition of his enormous contribution and commitment to Scottish literature.

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