Our MD Jon gives you a sneak preview into what books we'll be publishing in 2022 and beyond ...
All we can do at the moment is concentrate on making the best books we can. We have a dedicated team of outdoorsy types and publishing types, and if we just stick to our mission in everything we do to inspire adventure, then we will be happy, you will be happy, and that is more than enough for a little Sheffield publishing house.
We all know the cost of things is shooting up. Printing is up to 40% more expensive than a year ago and getting goods into and out of the country is best likened to the last 10k of a marathon – you sort of know you’ll get to the end, but it all feels a lot harder than it should.
There is next to no spare paper in Europe, so printing is massively delayed – and the pulp mills can name their price – while China has lots of paper, but container shipping from Hong Kong to Southampton is up from about £2,000 pre-Covid to more like £10,000 today (and that’s if you can get a slot on a boat!).
Some books have been late, some sell out and it takes us a while to restock, and some we’ve had to increase the price. But all you lot have stuck with us throughout. Thanks.
The good news is we have a busy year ahead and, forgetting the hassle, we will just push on with the quality.
We aim to just publish in the cycling, climbing, walking, swimming and running arenas this year, preferably where it requires some proper rough wear kit to get the best from it – whether that be wetsuit gloves, trail shoes, a mountain bike or steely fingers.
Already published and getting some good reviews are Extreme Lakeland, a photographic journey around the Lake District’s adventure sports and the fun to be had from doing them.
We also published The Climbing Bible: Practical Exercises, which is an essential book for climbers. Unlike many training books, it is simply a guide to the various exercises you can do to get the most from your climbing. Written by experienced coaches, it is perhaps more useful than many pure training books – and definitely a fast track to improving performance.
Available to pre-order now is Matt Whyman’s Failure is an Option – a book about what happens to those who maybe don’t get to the finish line of an ultramarathon, what happens beyond the glitz of the podium, and what happens when the marshals have started packing up and everyone wants to go home.
Also due to be published in April is Gravel Rides Scotland by Ed Shoote – Britain’s first pure gravel riding guidebook. This will be followed up later in the year by Great British Gravel Rides by Markus Stitz, which should keep our cycling fans quiet for the rest of 2022.
This will quickly be followed by Stacey McGowan Holloway's The Beaches of Scotland, which is an adventure traveller’s guide to, let’s face it, Europe’s most awe-inspiring coastal beaches. However, if beaches aren’t your thing, then also available in May is Ross Brannigan’s Running Adventures Scotland, which features twenty-five inspirational and fun running routes that explore the best of the Highlands and Lowlands.
Then we all know you’ll be ordering Stand-up Paddleboarding in Great Britain by Jo Moseley when it goes on pre-sale in March for a friend, right! For those a little unsure whether the whole SUP thing is going to work out for them, the next book in our 1001 Tips series, 1001 Outdoor Swimming Tips, should help you out if you do find yourself falling in.
Alex Roddie has also finished his 1001 Camping Tips book. As you can imagine from Alex, this book primarily focuses on backpacking, lightweight backpacking and fastpacking. If you want to know a little bit more about fastpacking, just watch me in the first two kilometres of any journey.
As the year unfolds, we have a superb climbing biography for you: Born to Climb from Zofia Reych (more of that revealed next month).
We have our first useful navigation book designed for runners, cyclists and walkers who have grown up in the digital age but want to avoid getting lost when Google Maps doesn’t get them to where they want to go (and more importantly back again).
And yes, we have a bouldering guide for the autumn, a cycle training book, a nutrition book and even a best of Britain and Ireland caves book – actually my first love – which I’m quite excited about for reasons I don’t fully understand.
We continue sourcing the best foreign books we can find and are very excited to be publishing the English edition of Alexandre Buisse's Mont Blanc Lines later this year.
We are also putting a lot of effort into finding and publishing relatable stories from the outdoors. Publishing in May, Running for Our Lives by Rachel Ann Cullen is a moving story about running, mental health, grief, loss, challenge and how maybe putting on a pair of trainers can possibly help just a little bit.
The autumn also brings a great crop of books, two stand-outs being We Can’t Run Away from This by Damian Hall and Sabrina Verjee’s autobiography, which probably won’t be called ‘Don’t Slow Down’ unless I have my way.
So thank you all for sticking with us. Thank you for telling us what you want to read, picking the best covers, reading and reviewing our books, and most of all for giving us a quick wave when we see you out on the trail.