Publisher spotlight: Floris Books

As part of #ScotLitFest, we’re hoping to shine a spotlight on not just the authors, but the publishers in Scotland with a five point guide. Today, we’ll be looking at Floris Books.

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The who, where, what and why.
Floris Books is an independent publisher based in Edinburgh. There are two main areas of the business. First, there’s non-fiction: everything from biodynamics and holistic health, to Steiner-Waldorf education and mind body spirit. Their other main area is children’s publishing: they are the largest children’s publisher in Scotland, with titles covering age ranges all the way up to 14 year olds, and craft and activity books for all ages.

the nowhere emporiumYou may know them for publishing…
The Nowhere Emporium by Ross MacKenzie
The Secret of the Kelpie by  Lari Don and illustrated by Philip Longson
An Illustrated Treasury of Scottish Mythical Creatures by Theresa Breslin, illustrated by Kate Leiper

What’s unique to them?
Floris have their Kelpies imprint, specialising in Scottish books for children everywhere. Board books (for 1-3 year olds), picture books (for 3-6 year olds), children’s novels (for 8-12 year olds) all with a Scottish twist, and Kelpies Teen, the big sister imprint to this. They run the Kelpies prize annually and welcome quality submissions for unpublished Scottish children’s fiction. The prize has brought them some of their best-loved authors such as Janis MacKay, Mike Nicholson and Caroline Clough. On top of that, they have the Kelpies Design & Illustration Prize, which gives illustrators the opportunity to work with one of their upcoming titles, with the number of entries rising year on year.

Claim To Fame.
Floris Books have been shortlisted for the Saltire Society’s Publisher of the Year Award for three years running and commended twice. Their roster of authors is equally as acclaimed and they have had a number of winners and shortlisters of the Scottish Children’s Book Awards including Alex McCall for the Younger Readers (8-11 years) Award at the Scottish Children’s Book Awards 2015 for Attack of the Giant Robot Chickens. Lari Don, who writes across the age ranges for Floris, has had great success with her teen novel, Mind Blind, which was longlisted for the CILIP Carnegie Medal, shortlisted for the Cornish Kernow Youth Book Awards and won the RED Book Award.

The future.
2016 has been great for their books across the UK, not just in Scotland. Thorfinn and the Awful Invasion is shortlisted for the inaugural LOLlies award (Scholastic) and was the Bloodaxe Challenge book at Jorvik in York. The Nowhere Emporium by Ross MacKenzie won the Blue Peter Best Story Award, as well as the Scottish Children’s Book Award. Across the UK it has also won the North East (of England) Book Award, was adopted in Staffordshire by Entrust, a great schools literacy initiative, is shortlisted for the Brilliant Book Awards in Nottingham and the Stockport Children’s Book Awards. MacKenzie’s next book, Shadowsmith, will be published by Floris in September. Lari Don’s new middle grade Spellchasers trilogy is launching in August with The Beginner’s Guide to Curses. For the younger, football-mad readers Scotland Stars F.C. series is launching later this month.

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