Wanted: Editor extraordinaire

Here at Adlard Coles Nautical, we’ll soon be wishing fair winds and following seas to one of our core crew members, the inimitable Half Hitch Hannah, after her three-year stint aboard this good ship, steering book projects through to completion with unfailing aplomb.

And while we wave goodbye to one comrade, we’ll be welcoming another into the fold as we recruit for an Editor to join our friendly nautical team here at Bloomsbury. If you are an editor looking for your next challenge, don’t delay – the application window closes this Sunday, 1st April.

Good luck!


Bloomsbury Publishing Plc is looking for a highly motivated and organised person for our busy Nautical department. The role involves managing a number of nautical titles through the editorial stages from manuscript to publication and briefing authors, freelancers, illustrators and in-house colleagues.

Key responsibilities include:
– Copy editing and proof reading of manuscripts, including the briefing and managing freelancers, undertaking copy editing or proofreading in-house.
– Maintaining schedules for own projects and taking titles through to publication.
– Briefing in-house and freelance designers and illustrators on cover designs, text designs and specific artwork projects.
– Checking all page proofs for layout and content. Liaising with authors and proofreaders, collating comments and ensuring final files are ready for press, on schedule and within budget.
– Writing cover copy and assisting Marketing where necessary in the promotion of all titles.
– Working with Rights department to gather materials for foreign editions. Preparing sample spreads for use at book fairs, sales conferences and industry events.

Experience/skills required:
– 18 months’ plus editorial experience in book publishing.
– Meticulous attention to detail.
– Excellent proofreading and copy editing skills.
-The ability to write strong sales copy and blurbs.
– The ability to prioritise and use their own initiative, juggling several projects at one time.
– Solid time-management skills to cope with competing deadlines.
– Experience in budget management.
– Basic knowledge of InDesign, Quark, Photoshop and Illustrator.
– Some experience of online/digital publishing would be an advantage.
– Some sailing knowledge/interest is a bonus, though not essential.

The role will be based at Bloomsbury Publishing, 50 Bedford Square, London WC1B 3DP.

Please apply by email only, including your CV, covering letter and salary expectations, to Sally Coleman, HR Manager, at sally.coleman@bloomsbury.com. Closing date 1st April 2012.


Sunset meanderings along the Thames

So Spring has officially sprung and over the past week we’ve been blessed with extra hours of glorious evening sunshine. I took a stroll along the Thames at Surbiton to capture some of the riverside charm and a glimpse at some of the first evening sails of the season from the Thames Sailing Club. It seems it wasn’t just the weather that was warming up….

One of the finest sunsets of 2012 set the scene for some riverside ramblings...


Distant dinghies tacking leisurely upstream towards Kingston Bridge.

Further towards Kingston, powerboats are polished and prepared for weekend excursions. Note, Raven's Ait in the background. This was Long owned or leased by The Navy League, then the charity responsible for the Sea Cadet Corps and the Girls' Nautical Training Corps. Raven's Ait was the home of TS Neptune, a major sailing, canoeing and boating training establishment until The Navy League invested instead in TS Royalist a small Brig.

Out from their winter shelters, the club's dinghies are prepared for launch. Amongst the dinghies at Thames Sailing Club are the Laser, Solo and Merlin Rocket and Firefly.

Peaceful panorama: there's plenty to marvel at as the sun sets over Raven's Ait.

The bustle of the boatyard is somewhat subdued on a balmy Spring evening. Bliss!

A celestial stroll

Guest post contributed by The Grand Mariner

It’s not often (ever?!) that you find yourself walking from the Sun, past Venus, Jupiter, Mars and Neptune, and out to the furthest reaches of our solar system to the (now downgraded) Pluto – all 3.6 billion miles worth, and all before lunch on a Saturday– a distance that it would take a car driving at 80 mph 5123 years to arrive! But this is what one member of the Adlard Coles team found themselves doing on Ventnor Esplanade on the south side of the Isle of Wight in gorgeous sunshine during a brilliant visualization exercise. It was all the brainchild of Stokey Woodall, whose passion and knowledge about the stars and the planets inspired us to hand ourselves over for a ‘Walk through the Heavens’ experience. We gleaned all manner of staggering facts and information, whilst confronting mind-boggling distances and concepts that make our daily toil on earth seem inconsequential and very, very parochial by comparison.

It was a fun, enlightening and mind-opening experience, and I urge anyone with nothing better to do (or even plenty better to do) on a spring Saturday to sign up for (email: ios@gmx.com; website: www.internationaloceanservices.co.uk). Our Saturday mornings (and our clear sky gazing) will never be the same again!

The porker handicap

Guest post contributed by Adlard Coles author Sandra Clayton

After we bought our catamaran, Voyager, one of our earliest passages was three summer weeks spent around the eastern and southern coasts of Ireland. On one particular afternoon we arrived at Arklow, tied up to the town quay and walked into the nearest shop to buy some bread.

‘You’ve five minutes,’ said the woman behind the counter.

‘Sorry?’ we said.

‘The pig racing.  It starts in five minutes.’

Now, with this being Ireland, and our accents noticeably English, you have to measure the information imparted to you on a blarney scale of 1–10, depending on how much of a smirk there is on the informant’s face.

‘At the top of the street,’ she said, handing us our change without so much as a twitch of the lip.  ‘If you hurry, you’ll catch the start.’

We had intended to return to the boat and have a meal, but climbed the hill instead. The town was holding its Annual Pig Race. A course had been cordoned off with tape. The runners, about Babe size and with numbers on their backs, were oinking gently and being held in check with some difficulty on the starting line. The stewards stood ready. Then, suddenly, they were OFF!

Some milled about at the start, unsure as to what was expected of them. Some were more interested in the punters shouting encouragement at them from the sidelines and went over to the tape to stare up at them. Three others noticed the bribes being waved at them from the other end of the track by their owners and set off at an almost-interested trot.


Not so much a gallop as a trot

Quite soon one of the little porkers in this trio started to show a good turn of speed. The crowd began to cheer him on. He began to respond, little trotters pounding the tarmac. With his owner at the finishing post waving a special treat ever more vigorously at him, he was emerging as a clear favourite while the most likely candidates for second and third places were trotting up a short distance behind. The crowd began to roar its approval. And then it happened.

At just past the half-way mark, someone threw a bag of chips in the path of the front-runner. And naturally he stopped to enjoy the unexpected bounty. He was soon joined by the two runners-up. Finally, aware of something interesting happening up ahead, the back of the field caught up and the race became a circle of up-ended pink bottoms and curly tails and a lot of satisfied grunting.

There was a protest, of course, a steward’s enquiry and a re-run was called for and agreed to. But questions remained. Would the runners who had completed half the course be handicapped by being tired? Should they be given a head start?  Bets were altered. After a brief delay, the runners were lifted, protesting, from the torn chip bag, set down at the starting line again and the race re-started.

This time, all the piglets set off with a will. Unfortunately, at the same point in the course – easily identifiable from the grease mark on the tarmac – the whiff of salt and vinegar exercised its irresistible magic and they all pulled up and waited expectantly.

I suppose that’s coastal sailing in a nutshell, really. You just never know when a flying bag of chips – or, in this case, a captivating snapshot of local life – is going to arrive.

Sandra Clayton and her husband David are seasoned blue water sailors. She has published two books about their adventures, Dolphins Under My Bed and Turtles In Our Wake.

The song of the boatyard

A guest post contributed by The Grand Mariner

Hard graft at fore and aft

At this time of year I really love the song of the boatyard – drills, grinders, power washers, sanders – and the groan of aching backs! It’s the sound of boats being readied for the water; being scraped, repaired, spruced, buffed, and protected for another season on the water. So none of the hard work, pain or aching really matters because there is the delicious prospect of another year’s sailing to be had. And the satisfaction of seeing your boat smart and gleaming like she never will be for the rest of the season once the weather gets to her!

The boatyard is abuzz

Whilst the elbow grease goes on the talk is of when, where, who with, for how long – all couched in the perennial seafarer’s caution (superstition?) – ‘If the weather is right / if we can make it / if we can get away’ etc etc. No-one wants to be so definite in their plans that Neptune steps in and says, ‘We’ll see about that…’

Ah, the prospect of time afloat, what a tonic it is. Roll on launch day!

Putting a ring on it

Leap day celebrations and female glory

It might just be the understatement of the (leap) year to say that women have come a long way since the 5th century nun, St Bridget, petitioned to St Patrick for women to be more empowered in choosing their husbands.

Girl Power

But since St Patrick kindly announced that, on the 29th February of a leap year, a woman may propose to the man of their fancies, the fairer sex have embraced the tradition and subverted traditional roles.

So while we celebrate the baton being firmly in the female’s hand for just one day, and with the London 2012 Olympic Sailing events just an anchor’s throw away, why not push the boat out and take a broader look at women’s victories in the Olympic arena throughout the decades?

Sailing made its Olympic debut in 1900 and, with the exception of 1904, the sport has appeared at every Olympic Games since. An impressive 90 medals have adorned the necks of females throughout Olympic Sailing’s history, so what’ve been the waypoints en route to such solid female presence at the Games?

  • 1908, London: Frances Rivett-Carnac (GBR) takes the first ever Olympic medal for women sailing in the Olympics. Frances was part of the gold medal winning crew of four, sailing in the 7-metre Class.
  • 1920, Antwerp: Dorothy Wright (GBR) is part of the gold medal winning 7-metre Class crew.
  • 1928, Amsterdam: Virginie Heriot (FRA) is the next female medalist, taking gold as part of a crew of 6 in the 8-metre Class.

    Heriot, aboard Aile VI, the boat that brought home Gold at the 1928 Amsterdam Olympics.

  • 1936, Berlin: Dagmar Salen (SWE) is part of the bronze medal crew of five in the 6-metre Class.

After the break in Olympic Games for World War II there were no women medallists until:

  • 1952, Helsinki: Two women went home with medals. Vibeker Lunde (NOR) won the silver medal as part of the crew of three in the 5.5-metre Class and Emelyn Whiton (USA) was one of six crew members who took the gold medal in the 6-metre Class.
  • 1988, Seoul: First female-only event introduced: the 470 two-person dinghy. *

From 29 July–11 August 2012, the waters of Weymouth Bay and Portland Harbour will play host to 10 exhilarating Sailing events during the London 2012 Games, and a substantial 143 women (albeit 237 men) will be competing.

I’m sure I’m not alone when I’ll be rooting for many, many more triumphs for women, come July 2012. And with inspirational tales of sailing success such as that of Omani sailor, Raya Al Habs, leading the way for future fortunes, the outlook for women’s sailing is bright!

* Source of table info