Hannah Nathanson – Features Director, Elle
She looks after everything that isn’t fashion or beauty.
Culture section – Play followed by features
They work 3 months in advance, currently working on July out in June
She works closely with the online team to fit in things that have missed print
She looks after fitness and wellness
Books page – looked after by Marta Bausells – she works independently, Hannah rarely interferes or changes anything she does. Do send YA titles
They don’t just deal with women’s issues and female writers. They also look at more commercial titles, collections of essays and themes. This year they have themed issues so look for writers tying into those – do email Hannah for the themes if you would like to see them
The fashion team have moodboard pages and include books in there from time to time – they’ve included Naomi Alderman, Michelle Obama, Pat Barker – high profile books
Send short pitch emails along with a press release and the jacket image. If she wants to hear more she’ll call in a copy. She likes breakfast and coffees to go through highlights. Loves launches, please include her on lists. And showcases, etc – please invite her to those! When pitching authors for features not directly linked to the book (first person, etc) Hannah will want to be put directly in touch with the author to chat ideas through rather than talking via the publicist
Natasha Lunn – Features Editor, Red Magazine
Target age – women in their 30s and 40s, people trying to find a purpose. Generation X. People starting a business, life after kids, entrepreneurship. Those with a perfectly imperfect life – what to do in unexpected circumstances.
They’re all about finding joy in the everyday, being present and appreciating the small moments
They are mainly looking for non-fiction when it comes to features
They do have a memoir slot which can be a first person story or an extract from a non-fiction book – authors writing a first person piece. Will need to be a beautiful, lyrical piece. For debut authors Natasha likes to go for coffee with an author so they can talk through feature ideas and eek them out
They cover a lot of careers related stuff including personal finance
Cyan Turan looks after the books pages – each month they include 4-5 pages of books coverage. There is a 4 page profile on a fiction author – examples in the past have been Zadie Smith, David Sedaris, Hilary Mantel. There is also room for fiction authors writing first person pieces. They will cover YA for features but not for review, they will cover parenting books or kids books for profile (high profile authors such as David Walliams) but not kids books for review
Books pages set up – visual picture opener, 1 page author interview, smaller mid-level author, reviews
Sarra Manning is the fiction editor.
Julie Powell looks after the self section including mental health, fitness, nutrition, well-being
The run Red events in September – pitch for these slots from March time. They also do content online and within the magazine around September to support the events.
Please include publicist names next to the books when they are listed in catalogues!
Natasha also writes the Conversations on Love – a bimonthly email newsletter featuring interviews and essays all based around the topic of love
Olivia Marks – Commissioning Editor, Vogue
Looks after everything non-fiction – arts, books, culture
They don’t run regular reviews, they do round ups 3-4 times a year.
They do run author profiles and interviews – there was a profile of Leila Slimani in the Feb ‘19 issue
They run author pieces from big names – Zadie Smith, Meg Wolitzer, Chimamanda Ngozie Adiche
They are mainly looking for female led-fiction when it comes to pieces but they have covered some men – Salman Rushdie.
They are always looking for interesting memoir pieces and moving first person stories.
The type of person they’ll profile – high profile (if not covered before), buzzy debut author, author making a comeback (e.g. Arundhati Roy), second time out for an author who made a huge splash with their debut (Slimani)
Do feel free to suggest trends within fiction as it’s useful for round ups. They’ll cover YA for features but not for review. Fashion books – they do coffee table round ups once a year – if not good timing they like to cover fashion books online as this is as important to them as print – they can do big visual pieces online for beautiful fashion books
Please pitch 3-4 months in advance of publication. They’re currently working on June/July. Email pitch big and debut books – really explain why it would be good for Vogue, know what the magazine is about. Send hard copies of catalogues.
Nina Pottell – reviews editor, Prima, email@example.com
Readership age – 35-59
She is looking for commercial fiction. She doesn’t do non-fiction, get in touch with Karen Swayne for those titles
Nina looks after ‘Books for My Bookshelf’. She works 3-4 months in advance. Each month there is 5 pages of books and the deadline is the beginning of the month for the following month.
Send proofs to her as soon as you get them.
Please send books to the right person, she only wants fiction – in 2018 she received over 900 books, lots of which weren’t the right fit for the magazine. Please don’t send YA or coming of age – she won’t cover these. They will cover kids titles in gifting round ups at Christmas
She will read proofs over Kindle.
Send digital or hard copy catalogues
She works part-time for Prima so be patient when it comes to emails. Her main job is a hairdresser so she is busy during the day. Do chase on emails though as she can’t always reply straight away.
Fiction features – email Karen as well as Nina
She’d like press release, publication date, background on the author, the same info to be on the proof as on the press release in case they get separated
Notes from Ella Dove, Red, Good Housekeeping and Prima – unable to make the meeting
What sort of books/authors are you interested in?
Memoirs or first person author experiences. Personal journey slot in GH has to have a clear beginning, middle end. Stories about women aged 35+ who’ve done something interesting – grown up gap year type travel, or been through a formative experience e.g illness, grief, family stories like adoption, tracing family history and making a discovery. These can be heavy and gritty or much lighter and more lyrical – we have to have a mix in each issue.
We don’t want pitches about authors writing books specifically – more that the author has an interesting story and then we can credit the book from there.
Self help/inner you books and lifestyle trends – what is the new hygge? Brain training etc.
Famous faces – autobiographies, cookbooks, must be a GH/Prima type person, someone our demographic would recognise and be interested in.
Linked to this, books that lend themselves well to stunts – e.g silent retreats
Prima – animals!
What’s the core demographic of your outlet and the usual format?
Women aged 35+
Prima – Family focused, love animals, busy women juggling multiple responsibilities. Career is less of a drive, more home-focused.
GH – The GH woman is quite high powered, established career, the ‘have it all’ woman – interested in family, current affairs, entertaining friends etc.
In what form do you like information? (ie catalogues, proofs, review copies)
Catalogues most useful, and then proofs for the titles we show interest in. AI sheets by email also useful.
What are your lead times?
Currently we’re writing April/May is in progress/planning June, so about 4 months ahead.
How do you like to be approached – email or phone?
Email in the first instance, phone to follow up.
Do you share/pass information on to other departments?
Red/GH/Prima are a hub so we all sit together and chat.
Are you interested in press conferences or launch parties?
Yes, all networking is good networking!
Do you ever find it useful to meet publishers to discuss advance lists, ie lunches/drinks?
Very useful, invaluable. But more breakfasts than drinks or lunches due to time constraints.