I helped myself to one of everything. My bag was super heavy but I knew this was a very valuable opportunity and after hearing the talk I was invested in the idea of self publishing.
Then we got to have the grand tour! This was a real highlight. Our tour guide referred to it as the Willy Wonka Chocolate Factory equivalent for Book lovers and he wasn’t wrong.
It was fascinating watching the machines churning out pages on printers that were bigger than me. The ink cartridge was basically a massive barrel. Huge rolls of paper were loaded into the machine and they fed into the printer, coming out on a roll full of print. The pages were folded and chopped and moved along a conveyor belt to the next part of the production process. Another machine printed the covers to the specification requested. They then entered a machine where pages were bound and matched with the correct cover. The books continued on their conveyor belt until they reached a machine which trimmed the cover to size and sorted the books for distribution. Massive mail bags that would rival Santa’s sacks were bursting as they awaited collection.
We made the most of getting to meet up and Nicola (local to the area) took us to a beautiful pub for a drink. The sun was streaming and we kicked back and talked about writing. There is nothing better than being surrounded by like minded creatives who understand your crazy imagination. We took full advantage of the opportunity to connect on a more personal level offline.
I loved hanging out with them so much, I definitely want to meet up again. There have been whispering of another WIW meet at London Book Fair! I just have to figure out childcare and travel etc.
Seeing the books made, filled me with excitement. My inner voice kept squealing, “That could be your book one day!” I wish I could show you pictures or videos of the factory but they made me sign an NDA. Seeing it come to life made me eager to get my manuscript ready for print so my ink and paper creation can go for a ride on their conveyor belt.
If you ever get the opportunity to go on their tour, do it. If you are thinking about self publishing, definitely consider Ingram Spark.
If you enjoyed this post you would like: