1 Penny Mountain and Suzanne Kendall discuss why WiP began to hold annual conferences
By 1983 WiP was really approaching its, kind of, heyday years. It had Wiplash, its monthly magazine. I think the training groups had already, were up and running by that stage. Regular meetings and, I know why I suggested it. It was because the book trade was full of associations. There was the Booksellers Association, the Publishers Association, Independent Publishers Guild. There was the Society of Young Publishers. There was Academic, College and University Booksellers Association. There were lots of reps’ associations up and down the country. And I really felt that you needed a conference to be a grown up in the book business and that WiP ought to have its own conference, to show that it had come of age and that the women could organise a really big event.
I think by that time Women in Publishing was established and it did feel that they should be able to manage a conference. And I think with the meetings that were held with speakers, they felt that they needed more time, which you couldn’t achieve with a one-off in the evening. And I think that’s, probably, they decided a full-day conference was the way to go.