• The Publishing Post

Publishers Pending with Phoebe Dar

By Kayley Stanbridge and Kelly Hides



We are all familiar with the age-old conundrum of how hard it is to break into the publishing industry, so we are always looking for new ways to make that task a little easier. Phoebe Dar is one such hopeful whose social media project, Publishers Pending, aims to make the industry more accessible. “We’re a diverse team of publishing hopefuls sharing our knowledge, experiences and perspectives to help and engage with the community,” she says. “On the whole, a down-to-earth, friendly, professional resource for all things books!”

Like all of us, working in publishing is Phoebe’s dream job. “All forms of storytelling fascinate me,” she says, “but I can’t think of anything more enjoyable and rewarding than being surrounded by books and book lovers working to get the stories out to as many people as possible.” With aims of working in publicity alongside expressing an interest in editorial and marketing, Phoebe tells us, “I would love to intern in the industry in any capacity to develop more experience.”


After noticing the emphasis on having an online presence in the book community, Phoebe felt many people would be at a disadvantage. “Bookstagram has a huge amount to offer and it’s a great way of seeing new releases, what’s trending, making connections and joining conversations going on in the industry, but many people have other responsibilities that sadly act as barriers to engaging fully with the community.” Deciding that a collaborative approach could change that for a lot of people, Publishers Pending was born. “My hope is that it’ll be invaluable,” she tells us. “We’re going to be doing all of the hard work behind the scenes to provide the content that our followers would get if they had their own book-focused account.”


In the two months since Phoebe first pitched the idea to the Publishing Hopefuls Facebook group, Publishers Pending has come a long way, having launched just last week. However, Phoebe admits the project has had its challenges. “The biggest challenge has been operating as an efficient team with the effects of COVID-19. We all operate on different weekly schedules, so it gets tough, but we hold virtual meetings and communicate via Slack.”


As the manager of Publishers Pending, Phoebe has learnt first-hand the value of quality leadership and how essential adaptability has been. “I’ve had to keep track of progress, prioritising tasks and how long it’s been since certain members last responded. I’ve also improved my abilities to delegate and motivate others, and have developed a better sense of when I should let discussions continue, set deadlines and make decisions.”


With Publishers Pending officially out there, Phoebe now says her “ultimate goal is to reach and support as many people as possible through our content” and hopes that “as we develop as an account and in our personal careers, we’ll be better positioned to share more aspects of the publishing industry with everyone.” When asked whether Publishers Pending was looking for any contributors, Phoebe replied, “We’ll definitely be looking to expand our team very soon! You can DM us on Instagram or email us at publishers.pending@gmail.com to express your interest.”


Taking inspiration from the likes of thestoreybookclub, claire_fenby and_prod_squad_books, Phoebe aims to provide a balance of informative as well as personal content. “The bookstagram community inspires us to offer an honest, personable voice to the more professional side of things, and it’s absolutely thriving with talented, creative people that I really admire,” she explains.


Like everyone, Phoebe found that lockdown forced her to evaluate her goals, and the excess of free time allowed her to do just that. “In an industry as competitive as publishing, it can be draining to keep clamouring for the same opportunities as everybody else. I felt that I ought to do what I could to make progress, and I suspect many people feel similarly. We’re all coming up with innovative ways of engaging with the community, developing skills and making connections for the future. It’s an incredible silver lining for many of us out of such a tough year.”


With entering the industry being more competitive than ever, Publishers Pending will be an invaluable resource for so many hopefuls. A huge thank you to Phoebe for taking the time to share her project with us! You can keep up with the project on the following socials:

Instagram: @publishers.pending

Twitter: @pubpending

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