The Bookswarm team is a mix of full-time staff and ‘per project’ consultants based around the UK, most of whom have worked with Bookswarm for many years.
Simon Appleby, Managing Director
Simon Appleby is the founder and Managing Director of Bookswarm, the only digital agency in the UK dedicated to delivering projects for publishers, authors and others in the world of books.
Simon has spoken at the Publishing Scotland conference and the Faber Factory conference, contributed to the Writers’ and Artists’ Yearbook, and created and delivered a course on digital project development for the Publishing Training Centre.
Simon’s career in digital media started in 1998, and he gained experience of digital project delivery for a range of clients while working for a number of digital agencies. In 2009 he went ‘client-side’, where as Digital Projects Manager for Octopus Publishing Group, he gained invaluable inside experience of the publishing world.
Simon is a keen reader of many types of writing, both fiction and non-fiction. The most unusual book on his shelves is an Estonian first edition of The Colour of Magic, signed by Sir Terry Pratchett.
Hazel Miles, Designer
Hazel is a tea-fueled Graphic Designer of many years experience.
Hazel has experience in a range of design disciplines. Starting out in design for print, she moved into web design, and retail and packaging design before deciding that it was time to branch out on her own. Working for herself Hazel has found greater creative freedom and enjoys working with a purring cat inches from her keyboard.
Although Hazel feels the Kindle is “a marvellous invention” she is adamant that she will always read the printed word… unless it’s one of the many blogs she follows. Hazel has more books than time but when she does find time to read Hazel enjoys a wide range of genres with a particular fondness for the classics.
Alex Knight, Developer
Alex is a web developer. She has worked at digital media agencies in London and Birmingham and more recently has chosen to freelance. She is passionate about creating pixel perfect websites, being skilled in both back and frontend coding.
She enjoys reading a variety of genres, with sci-fi and fantasy being favourites, and tends to have a couple of books on the go at once. Despite being a bit of a geek when it comes to owning gadgets she still prefers a real book to a Kindle.
Alex loves the sea, and lives in south Devon where she grew up. When not in front of a computer she can be found kayaking, sailing or exploring Dartmoor.
Susie McConnell, Designer / Developer
Susie is a graphic designer and front-end developer. After many years spent working for both print and digital agencies, she decided to take the leap and pursue life as a freelancer, focusing mainly on working with clients in the arts industries.
Susie is a big fan of non-fiction, enjoying the works of writers such as Mary Roach and Jon Ronson. In her spare time she enjoys the cinema, playing music, binge-watching true crime documentaries, and a good cup of tea.
Bill Hemsley, Developer
Bill Hemsley is an editor and developer. He has worked in book publishing since 1987 in principally editorial positions, mostly in illustrated co-editions, reference, travel and cartographic – but also fiction (briefly), children’s, educational and academic.
Throughout this time he has been involved in bringing together book publishing and technology, both enhancing production methods and finding new ways to bring content to readers. He wrote his first content management system more than 20 years ago, produced “interactive CD-ROMs” (again briefly!), and first put book content on the web in 1994.
Bill would spend more time playing the piano if there wasn’t so much good stuff to read. From an early age he has been known for always having a stack of books all on the go at the same time.