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THE BIBLIO FILE is a podcast about "the book," and an inquiry into the wider world of book culture. Hosted by Nigel Beale it features wide ranging, long-form conversations with best practitioners inside the book trade and out - from writer to reader. Why listen? The hope is that it will help you to read, write, publish, edit, design, and collect better, and improve how you communicate serious, big, necessary, new, good ideas and stories...

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Jul 11, 2022

Why listen to Alexandra Pringle? Because Richard Charkin told me that she's the best editor in the English speaking world, that's why.
Alexandra was editor-in-chief at Bloomsbury Publishing for more than two decades. She was recently appointed Executive Publisher. 
She began her publishing career at the British magazine Art Monthly before joining the women's publisher Virago in 1978. She became Editorial Director in 1984, and moved to Hamish Hamilton in 1991 to undertake the same role. Through much of the 1990s she was a literary agent for, among others, Amanda Foreman, Geoff Dyer, Maggie O'Farrell and Ali Smith. She joined Bloomsbury in 1999 as head of the adult publishing division where her authors included Margaret Atwood, Elizabeth Gilbert, Sheila Hancock, Anne Michaels, Ann Patchett, George Saunders and Richard Ford. Among other things we talk about editing's "what if" conversations, about houseboats, socialism, building confidence, Harry Potter, tempering criticism, teasing, instinct, luck, and yes, arm-hair.  
Note to Listener: My apologies. The Zoom connection was poor on this one. But what Alexandra has to say is delightful and informative, so I hope you'll agree with me that it's worth putting up with. I plan to interview her again. In person. With a good microphone. On her houseboat.