People Round-Up, Early October 2016


Brian O’Leary began as Executive Director of the Book Industry Study Group on October 3, succeeding Mark Kuyper, who left after a year in the job.

Linda K. Zecher, President and CEO of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, has left her position after five years. The Board of Directors has appointed L. Gordon Crovitz as interim CEO while a permanent replacement is found.

With the acquisition of Logical Marketing by OptiQly, Logical Marketing Founder and CEO Mike Shatzkin has assumed a seat on the OptiQly board and a long-term consulting agreement. Logical Marketing Co-Founder and Chief Creative Officer Pete McCarthy and Co-Founder and Director of Operations Jess Johns are now, respectively, Chief Product and Services Officer and Director of Marketing at OptiQly.

At Touchstone/S&S, Cara Bedick joined as Senior Editor. She was previously Senior Editor at William Morrow.

Amanda Bergeron joined Berkley as Executive Editor. She was previously at Morrow/Avon for eight years.

At Harmony Books, Alyse Diamond has joined as Associate Editorial Director. She was previously Editorial Director of Online Integrated Products at Rodale and launched their online learning program.

Rick Bunka is the new President and CEO of Nebraska Book Holdings. He had previously been President of New Dots LLC from January 2007 to February 2013 and served as its Chief Executive Officer until August 2012. Interim head Ben Riggsby will remain on the company’s board. He was appointed Interim President and CEO in early 2015.

At VitalSource, Jason White joined as Director, Sales Operations. He had most recently served as Vice President, Finance, with Expion. Tracy Schreiber joined as VP, Customer Success. She previously worked as Senior Director, Customer Success with Dude Solutions.

Hank Cochrane joined Macmillan as Senior National Account Manager. He most recently worked as VP, Sales Imprint Director at Penguin Random House. Cristina Cushing has been appointed National Account Manager. At Henry Holt, Jessica Wiener has been appointed Director of Marketing for adult trade. She previously worked as Director, Integrated Marketing, for Workman.

Lauren Velasquez has joined Little, Brown as Marketing Manager. Previously, she was Marketing Manager at Crown Publishing Group.

At agencies…Mackenzie Brady Watson has joined the Stuart Krichevsky Literary Agency as Literary Agent. She was previously Agent at New Leaf Literary & Media. Natasha Fairweather is joining Rogers, Coleridge & White as Agent and as a member of the board; she was previously at United Agents. David Granger has joined Kuhn Projects and Zachary Shuster Harmsworth as Agent after spending 19 years as Editor-in-Chief of Esquire. Grace Ross joined Regal Hoffman & Associates as Agency Assistant and Junior Assistant. Previously, she was at the Denise Shannon Literary Agency. William Lippincott is leaving Lippincott Massie McQuilkin at the end of 2016 to pursue other interests. The agency will become Massie McQuilkin & Co. Anna Knutson Geller has left The Book Group in order to found Write View, a literary agency with an emphasis on inspirational memoir, practical nonfiction, and spirituality.

Joan Strasbaugh has joined The Experiment as Senior Editor. She worked previously as Senior Editor with Abbeville Press.

Moira Kerrigan has returned to Workman Publishing as Associate Director of Marketing with a focus on the adult titles. 

At Lion Forge Comics, Andrea Colvin has joined as Senior Editor at Roar Comics. She was previously VP of content for the book division at Andrews McMeel Universal.

Amy Kosar is joining Chronicle Books as Distribution Client Account Manager after working at Photojojo as General Manager.

Becky Herrick, formerly of Scholastic, has joined Skyhorse as Editor at Sky Pony Press.

At The Nation, David Marcus has been named Literary Editor. He was previously Co-Editor at Dissent and succeeds John Palatella, who will serve as editor-at-large.

Darcy Cohan has joined Insight Editions as PR Director. She worked previously at HarperCollins, Chronicle Books, Perseus Books Group, and Princeton University Press and, most recently, as communications director for a Washington, DC political think tank.

At Catapult, Nicole Chung has joined as Managing Editor of the online magazine and writing community. She was previously Managing Editor at The Toast.

Chris Saynor will join EDItEUR as Standards Editor in November. He is currently metadata specialist and project manager at Giant Chair.

At Random House Children’s, Bob Bianchini has joined the art and design department as Designer.

Sarah Creech has joined Simon Pulse as Senior Designer; she was previously Designer at HarperCollins.

Megan Looney is joining Harper Audio as Marketing Associate. She has worked with HarperCollins since 2014, previously in legal. Claire McLaughlin has joined Little Bird Publicity as Assistant Publicist.

Read More »

Forty Years in the Book Industry

The annual Book Industry Study Group (BISG) meeting took place on September 30th – coincidentally on the eve of its new Executive Director Brian O’Leary’s first day in his new job, October 3rd.  Almost one hundred members and industry participants came for the program and to celebrate BISG’s 40th anniversary.  Awards were also given out, the first one to Ingram Content Group’s John Ingram for “Excellence,” rather than, as in prior years, for lifetime achievement.  In an upbeat and humorous speech, Ingram told the assembled that he much preferred the new description, as he didn’t intend to retire to the golf course any time soon.  He accepted the award “on behalf of the 3,400-plus people” who work at Ingram.

A panel discussion on how the industry is being transformed was moderated by Sourcebooks CEO Dominique Raccah, who later won a BISG Industry Innovation Award.  The participants, John Ingram, Overdrive’s Steve Potash, Firebrand’s Fran Toolan and HarperCollinsChantal Restivo-Alessi, talked about the opportunities and the issues facing publishing.  Restivo-Alessi focused on backlist and international, while Potash cited metadata.  Ingram urged publishers to take more chances, even at the risk of failure.

Wiley’s Peter Balis reviewed what had happened in the last year, and how the board and membership is expanding, both in numbers and the variety of companies they represent.  A panel moderated by Peter Hildick-Smith that included Jeff Abraham, Angela Bole, Ken Brooks and Maureen McMahon (the incoming Chair of the Board) talked about their respective memories of BISG over the past years.

Sree Sreenivasan, Chief Digital Officer of the City of New York, was supposed to be the end of the day keynote but, no surprise, he was called away to tend to a city crisis.  So Brian O’Leary had a chance to tell the audience BISG’s plans for the future.  It will be, he said, the “information hub” for the industry and will help it become more efficient on a global basis.  His remarks were met with enthusiasm and (given the recent turnover) a sense of relief that BISG was in very good, and experienced, hands.


Top 5 Publishing Articles/Blog Posts of the Week 9/26-9/30

number_5_redEvery week, we recommend 5 publishing articles/blog posts that supplement the major news for the week. Whether data or industry commentary, we hope these 5 links will be a simple way to keep you in the know.

What happens if the robots outwrite us?

When communities ban books, diverse titles are the first to go.

Academic e-references are thriving, even as e-textbook sales stagnate.

High prices for ebooks encourage the used-book trade.

Can machines learn to predict bestsellers – and should they?

International Bestsellers, September 2016

Every month, Publishing Trends runs fiction international bestsellers lists from four territories–France, Germany, Italy, and Spain. This month, our four regular territories are joined by two more: Australia and China. Those books that have been published in English are listed with their official English-language title. All others are translated as literally as possible from the original. Where applicable, the US publisher is listed after the local publisher, separated by a “/”. The lists are taken from major newspapers or national retailers, which are noted at the bottom of each list. Editor’s note: Our regular source for Spain only listed 9 bestselling fiction titles currently, hence a shorter than usual list for that country.







Top 5 Publishing Articles/Blog Posts of the Week 9/19-9/23

number_5_redEvery week, we recommend 5 publishing articles/blog posts that supplement the major news for the week. Whether data or industry commentary, we hope these 5 links will be a simple way to keep you in the know.

What tech trends do publishers need to keep an eye on?

Publishers Weekly released their annual salary survey.

Where do the best film heroines come from? Books, of course.

Do free samples drive book sales?

Sales numbers show comic book orders reaching a 20 year high.

In Case You Missed It…PT Picks: The Visitors by Simon Sylvester

PT Picks: The Visitors by Simon Sylvester (Melville House, 2015)

From Samantha:TheVisitors_mech_fin.indd

I really enjoy reading mysteries, and I really enjoy reading books with a supernatural or mystical element. The twain do not often meet, but they did in The Visitors by Simon Sylvester. This book combines the two effortlessly, making for a great beginning-of-fall read. This debut novel was originally published in the UK by Quercus in 2014 and then brought to the U.S. last December by Melville House.

What makes the book so enjoyable is Sylvester’s skill at bringing the dark moodiness of the small Scottish island of Bancree to life while deftly mixing in selkie folktales. And the main character, teenage Flora, shows her anger and desires in a way that’s familiar without being grating to the book’s intended adult audience. This book takes a step away from the predictable with great success.


Flora’s preparing for her last year at high school after her boyfriend has left for college. She knows she will be lonely, and buries herself in a school project about selkies, until she meets her new neighbors, Ailsa and her father. The newcomers seem a little mysterious to the townspeople, but not enough to distract the townsfolk from the ever-increasing number of men gone missing from their island.

Top 5 Publishing Articles/Blog Posts of the Week 9/12-9/16

number_5_redEvery week, we recommend 5 publishing articles/blog posts that supplement the major news for the week. Whether data or industry commentary, we hope these 5 links will be a simple way to keep you in the know.

For comic book fans, print is still king.

Do we need to save the bookstore?

How did Kickstarter become a major force in publishing?

Digitization may not be the threat to publishing that it was once thought to be.

We’re all busy, so why should we read?

People Round-Up, Mid-September 2016


As reported earlier, Ronald Boire is leaving his position as CEO of Barnes & Noble. Owner and founder Len Riggio will re-assume CEO functions until a successor is named.

At Bloomsbury US, Cindy Loh has been promoted to the newly-created role of VP and Publishing Director of Consumer Publishing.

Dr. Adam Black will join Macmillan Learning as Chief Learning Officer; he previously led higher-education science, global digital innovation, technology for language learning and, most recently, efficacy and research at Pearson.  At Macmillan Children’s, Kristin Dulaney has joined as Executive Director of Subsidiary Rights. She was previously Director of Subsidiary Rights at Little, Brown Children’s.

Jackie Cantor is joining Gallery Books as Senior Editor; she was previously Executive Editor at Berkley. Abby Zidle will join as Associate Director of Marketing. She is currently Senior Editor at Pocket.

Jessica Schmidt will join Running Press as Director of Marketing and Publicity in mid-September; she was previously Director of Sales and Subsidiary Rights at The Story Plant and at Perseus Distribution before that.

At Chronicle Books, Kristin Norell joined as International Sales Director; she was previously VP of International Sales at World Book. Camille Geeter will join as Marketing Assistant on September 12; she previously worked as an Intern at HarperOne. Janine Sato joined as Junior Production Designer; she was most recently Product Designer at Apple. Morgan Amer will join as Trade Sales Coordinator on September 13; she was previously Assistant Manager at Ryland Peters & Small.

Susan Ruszala resigned from her position as President of NetGalley after 10 years with the company and may be reached at [email protected] Fran Toolan, CEO, has taken over daily operations indefinitely.

Jennifer Romanello, current VP and Director of Publicity at Simon & Schuster Children’s, will leave and join Emi Battaglia Public Relations in October where she will work as Partner.

At agencies… Peter Knapp rejoined Park Literary Group as Agent for middle grade and young adult fiction; he was previously Agent at New Leaf Literary & MediaCathryn Summerhayes joined Curtis Brown UK, after most recently working as an agent at William Morris EndeavorAbby Saul left Browne & Miller to launch The Lark Group, a literary agency specializing in adult commercial and literary fiction.  Shana Kelly joined Einstein Literary Management as Agent, after previously working from home as a freelance editor and publishing consultant. Kimberly Brower left the Rebecca Friedman Literary Agency to start her own literary agency, Brower Literary & Management. She is joined by associate agents Jess Dallow and Aimee Ashcraft. Victoria Marini joined the Irene Goodman Literary Agency as Literary Agent with a focus on middle grade, YA, and adult fiction; she previously was an agent at Gelfman Schneider Literary Agents, Inc. / ICM Partners. At Stonesong, Melissa Edwards has joined as a Literary Agent with a focus on children’s and adult fiction and pop culture nonfiction; she previously was an agent and foreign rights manager at the Aaron Priest Literary Agency.

At Viking UK, Eleo Gordon retired from his job as Editorial Director after working for approximately 50 years at the company.

Julianne Conlon joined Random House Children’s digital marketing team as Associate Manager; she was previously Social Media Specialist at

At Canongate, Simon Thorogood joined as Editorial Director; he previously worked as Publisher for non-fiction at HeadlineHannah Knowles will join as Senior Commissioning Editor in November. She is currently Commissioning Editor at Octopus.

Maris Kreizman joined the Book-of-the-Month Club as Editorial Director. Most recently, she was Publishing Outreach Lead at Kickstarter.

Emma Dries joined Ecco as Assistant Editor; she was previously Editorial Assistant at Knopf Doubleday.

Ben Platt is to join Public Books as Global Coordinating Editor; he was previously Editor at Basic Books.

Victory Matsui joined One World as Editor, after previously working freelance.

At Sourcebooks, Stefani Sloma was hired as Assistant Publicist; she was formerly the YA Librarian at Pearl Public Library in Mississippi.  Stephany Daniel joined as Publicist; she was most recently Publicity and Marketing Coordinator at Shambhala Publications.  Also, Sabrina Hill joins as Project Editor, after previously working as Project Manager at Corporate Translations, Inc.

Tara Sonin joined Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Children’s as Digital Marketing & Publicity Specialist; she was previously Marketing Manager at Paper Lantern Lit.

Michael Spradlin joined Midwest Tape as Marketing Director; he was previously Director of Sales & Marketing at Albert Whitman.

At Abrams, Jennifer Bastien joined as Publicist; she was previously Associate Publicist at DK. Kira Egan joined as Trade Sales Representative after working as Assistant Manager and Sidelines Buyer at Bank Street Books.

Janelle DeLuise will join Little, Brown Children’s as Rights Director; she previously worked as Associate Director of International Rights at Scholastic.

Chelsea Morgan and Kerry Johnson joined Simon & Schuster Children’s as Production Editors.  Morgan was most recently Assistant Production Manager at Macmillan, and Johnson was previously a freelance production editor.

Matt Wise joined Adaptive Studios as VP of Publishing and Literary Development; he was most recently Director of Publishing for Blumhouse Books.

At Choice, the reviews publication from the Association of College and Research Libraries, Melissa Ceraso joins as Editor in mathematics and natural sciences; she was most recently the Evergreen Systems Manager at Bibliomation, IncJason Simon, previously the Technology and Serials Librarian at Fitchburg State University, is now Senior Web Developer.

At the University of Chicago Press, Joe D’Onofrio joined as Director of the Distribution Center. He most recently worked as Director of Supply Chain for Henry Schein.

Allison Adler joined Andrews McMeel as editor; she previously worked freelance and as an editor at Henry Holt.

At Northwestern University Press, Mike Levine left his position as acquisitions editor, held since 2007, to work as an independent provider of editorial services. Read More »

Top 5 Publishing Articles/Blog Posts of the Week 9/5-9/9

number_5_redEvery week, we recommend 5 publishing articles/blog posts that supplement the major news for the week. Whether data or industry commentary, we hope these 5 links will be a simple way to keep you in the know.

Bowker released a report on self-publishing statistics for 2015.

Bloomberg takes a deeper look into the theory that print is on the rise.

What are the real economics behind publishing?

How can data make publishing better for publishers and readers alike?

Are young adult novels for everyone?

Publishing Trends Annual Contact Sheet 2016

The 2016 general US publishing industry contact sheet is our most popular annual feature, listing publishers large and small, accounts, trade associations, and more. Taking into account mergers, acquisitions, and new additions, we are proud to offer our most comprehensive updated version as a free PDF. Click the image below to download the Publishing Trends Annual Contact Sheet 2016.

Annual Contact Sheet 2016