Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : July 9th 2013 Contents A29
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In October at the annual graduation
exercise at UWI, St Augustine campus,
Jamaican-born publisher Ian Randle will
receive an honorary doctorate for his con-
tribution to Caribbean publishing.
Randle founded the first commercial
scholarly publishing company in the Eng-
lish-speaking Caribbean called Ian Randle
Publishers Ltd (IRP).
He is absolutely elated at being given such
Becoming a publisher is something the
64-year-old stumbled upon quite mistakenly.
According to him, it definitely was not what
he had in mind for a career at all.
"I read for an honours degree in history
at UWI (Mona Campus). At the time I really
had no career ambition or known exactly
what I wanted to do. However, while an
undergraduate, I was offered a job in pub-
lishing," Randle said.
A British publishing company---Caribbean
University Press, started up in Barbados and
he was offered a job at its branch in Jamaica.
Randle would begin publishing monographs
in Caribbean History. He then worked for
another British company as the Caribbean
editor for Collins Educational Publishers,
United Kingdom from 1970 to 1974.
But it was while studying international
politics at the University of Southampton,
UK, that Randle got his "big opportunity."
In 1975, he was head-hunted by a British
educational publishing company, which was
looking to set up a business in Jamaica.
"I went back to Jamaica at Heinemann s
Publishers Caribbean Ltd and ran it for 15
years. It was the first serious attempt by
any publishing company of indigenous pub-
lishing in the Caribbean," Randle said.
In 1996, he founded the Caribbean Law
Publishing Company which has now merged
To date, over 400 books have been
published through IRP.
But how did Randle manage
success when it has been long
said by Caribbean pub-
lishers how difficult
publishing company in the Caribbean, and
keep it running?
Randle said it is extremely difficult but
his personality never allowed him to quit.
"I am the kind of person who likes to
jump in and then learn to swim. Once I
believe in something I go after it with every-
thing," the father of three said.
He said his success comes down to four
simple things: Risk taking, this is at the core
of starting up a book publishing company;
reinvention---creating new books on a con-
tinuous basis; early strategy---don t see
the market for the books you produce as
being restricted to the Caribbean. And
lastly, produce a high quality prod-
uct---your book can sit in any library,
anywhere in the world.
"We have always insisted
on producing books at the
highest international stan-
dard---from content, design
must be at the best quality,"
He said a good publishing
company builds a reputation
and clients then seek you
out....you never have to go
"In all the years I have
been doing this we have
never had to run out and look
for authors," he boasted.
On the flip side, Randle
said there are many reasons
why it is difficult for
Caribbean publishers to
He said to begin with,
publishing is not seen as a
lucrative or viable business
to get into.
(CONTINUES ON PAGE A32)
Scuba divers have discovered a
primeval underwater forest off the
coast of Alabama.
The Bald Cypress forest was buried
under ocean sediments, protected in
an oxygen-free environment for more
than 50,000 years, but was likely
uncovered by Hurricane Katrina in
2005, said Ben Raines, one of the first
divers to explore the underwater forest
and the executive director of the non-
profit Weeks Bay Foundation, which
The forest contains trees so well-
preserved that when they are cut, they
still smell like fresh Cypress sap, Raines
The stumps of the Cypress trees span
an area of at least 0.5 square miles (0.8
kilometers), several miles from the coast
of Mobile, Alabama, and sit about 60
feet (18 metres) below the surface of
the Gulf of Mexico.
Despite its discovery only recently,
the underwater landscape has just a
few years to be explored, before wood-
burrowing marine animals destroy the
Divers discover underwater forest
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