Partners’ Corner September 2014

Partners’ Corner is a place where the principals of Market Partners International can share their observations of the publishing industry.

As a great deal of Market Partners International’s business is executive search, we’re aware of the fluctuations – and disparities – in publishing salaries.  Lately the disparities, even for comparable positions, have become more noticeable.  As large and small publishing companies merge, these  may become more evident, with those holding similar titles sitting cheek by jowl with higher (or lower) salaried colleagues.

In general, though, we’re seeing some downward trending at the upper end of the  pay scale; the dotcom crash of the early 2000s, followed by the economic downturn has frozen starting salaries, and therefore anyone who started in the last dozen years has been affected.  Despite the impact of improved bottom lines due to the efficiencies of digital publishing, many younger director level employees are earning far less than their older colleagues might have when at the same level. Decreased opportunities seem to have shifted the leverage so that there are more applicants ready to take lower salaries and publishers are quick to take advantage of this.

It will be intriguing to see how this newer generation of managers and directors fares as they climb to higher positions.

Top 5 Publishing Articles/Blog Posts of the Week 9/1-9/5

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.

How can translated books become bestsellers in the United States?

Should publishing houses be responsible for fact checking books?

Will dedicated ereaders continue to sell as tablet technology advances?

Is Amazon betting on the right genre with their announcement of their KDP Kids?

Has the acquisition of publications by professional societies become an arms race?


Top 5 Publishing Articles/Blog Posts of the Week 8/25-8/29

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.

According to Publishers Weekly’s salary survey, publishing pay increased by 2.8% in 2013.

How is the culture of bookselling affected by ebooks?

A recent poll of publishers shows their concern for the quality of ebooks.

Can a work of fiction actually shape the real world?

What does Amazon’s acquisition of Twitch mean for publishers?


International Bestsellers, August 2014

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: Finland and Malaysia.  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.  







People Round-Up, Late August 2014


Michael Sand, previously Executive Editor at Little, Brown is joining Abrams as VP, Publisher, Adult Trade on September 22nd.

Also, Miriam Tribble has joined Abrams as Editor, Calendars, Licenses & Custom Publishing She will report to Lindley Boegehold, who is Editorial Director of that department. She was previously Associate Product Development Manager at The Metropolitan Museum of Art. 

Rick Horgan has joined Scribner as VP, Executive Editor. Previously, he was Crown’s VP, Executive Editor.

Jennifer Romanello has joined the Simon & Schuster Children’s Publishing Division as VP, Director of Publicity. She was most recently Principal of Jennifer Romanello Public Relations and was previously VP, Executive Publicity Director at Grand Central.

As PW reported, Editor Sarah Durand and VP, Senior Editor Malaika Adero have left Atria.

Tricia Boczkowski is joining Crown Archetype, Three Rivers Press as VP, Editorial Director. Formerly, she was Editor-at-Large at Gallery Books.

Jay Sacher has joined Potter Style as a Senior Editor.  Formerly, he was an Editor at Princeton Architectural Press.

Ballantine Bantam Dell has hired Lucy Danziger, most recently Editor-in-Chief of SELF magazine, as an Editor-at-Large. She will report to VP and Editorial Director of Nonfiction Jennifer Tung and work with Executive Editor Marnie Cochran to acquire and develop projects.

Elizabeth Gay has joined Tarcher/Perigee as Publicist. Previously, she was Associate Publicist at Simon & Schuster. Lindsey Ruthen has joined Tarcher/Perigee as Senior Publicist.  She was previously at Palgrave as Publicist.

Stephanie Hargadon has joined Putnam as Publicity Manager. Previously, she was Senior Publicist at St. Martin’s Press.

Bill Clegg is leaving William Morris Endeavor to set up his own literary agency.

Ben Wright has been named Group International Sales Director at Hachette Book Group.  Wright will be based in London and report to Commercial Director of Hachette UK, Richard Kitson. Formerly, he was the Director, Digital Sales and Channel Development at Penguin Random House.

Nationally known speaker and author Donalyn Miller has joined Scholastic Book Fairs as Manager, Independent Reading & Outreach.

Freelancer Jessica Meltzer has joined Scholastic as Designer and freelancer Lizzy Yoder has joined as Senior Designer.

Lauren Scobell has joined Macmillan’s Swoon Reads as Director.  She is the former Consumer Marketing Director at Nickelodeon.

Matt West has left his position as VP, Sales Operations and Data Strategy at B&H Publishing Group and can be contacted at [email protected].

Dave Fessenden has joined WordWise Media Services as a Literary Agent.  Formerly, he was Acquisitions Editor at CLC Publication. James Lance, has also joined WordWise Media Service as a Literary Agent. Previously, he was Publisher at Kumarian Press.

Julie McKay joined Scribd as Manager, Content Acquisition. Greg Freed has also joined Scribd as a Content Operations Specialist.

Kelli Christiansen is launching a professional editorial service firm called Bibliobibuli. The firm will take on select authors in such subjects as business, finance & investing, history, memoir, and non-genre fiction. The firm’s website is

Stacey Ashton has left her position as Marketing Director, Trade and Professional Reference at McGraw-Hill Professional and can be contacted at [email protected].

Elizabeth Lagno has left her position as Publicist at Phaidon and can be contacted at [email protected].

In the wake of Hachette and Ingram’s failed acquisition of Perseus Book Group, Mark Suchomel will officially resume his position at Legato, which he founded in 2013, after leaving the company at the end of July.

Jenny Cima, has joined Rowman & Littlefield as Head of Sales. Previously, she was International Sales Manager at Bloomsbury Publishing. Mihela Kralj has joined Rowman & Littlefield as Marketing Executive. Her previous position was Marketing Assistant at Bloomsbury Publishing.

Sam Caggiula has joined Skyhorse Publishing as Senior Publicity Manager. Previously, he was Publicity Manager at Rowman & Littlefield. 

Christina Noriega has returned to Ryland, Peters & Small + CICO Books as Sales Director after a short time at Skyhorse Publishing as Director, Special Markets.

There were several changes at university presses this month. John Warren will be leaving Georgetown University Press on Sept 3, to head up a new publishing venture at George Mason University.  His role at GMU will be to develop a university press with a digital library publishing program.  Amanda Keith has joined Wake Forest University Press as Managing Editor.  Harper One’s former Executive Editor John Loudon will join Yale University Press as Consulting Editor.  Richard Morrison has left his position as Editorial Director at University of Minnesota Press to become Editorial Director at Fordham University PressJason Weidemann, previously a Senior Editor at the University of Minnesota Press, has been named the new Editorial Director. Gary Dunham, previously the Director of Publications for the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association,was appointed Director of Indiana University Press.

Jon Sternfeld has left his position as Acquisitions Editor at Lyons Press and can be contacted at [email protected].

Julia Borcherts has joined Kaye Publicity as Publicist. Previously, she was a columnist for RedEye Chicago. Read More »

Top 5 Publishing Articles/Blog Posts of the Week 8/18-8/22

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 are the dangers of physical bookstores expanding just for the sake of expanding?

How is the on-demand customization of books changing the industry?

Despite the report stating that reading digitally leads to lesser retention, not everyone agrees that digital reading is making readers dumber.

The two competing views on Kindle Worlds: is it a dud or not?

How can readers focus with so many possible distractions?

Top 5 Publishing Articles/Blog Posts of the Week 8/11-8/15

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.

A study shows that reading print as opposed to digital increases reading comprehension.

Can editors find success in crowdsourcing which books they publish?

Can interactivity in children’s books be successful in both print and digital?

Do authors feel that book tours are worth their time?

A translator of Haruki Murakami talks aboutthe pressure of keeping the secrets of a heavily anticipated title.


Branding by Video

It turns out Simon & Schuster, who has been gaining press attention with the release of its “Behind the Book” video series, isn’t the only publishing company that’s been building its video cache. We’ve decided to gather a few together for viewing.

Here’s a little background in case you missed it: S&S uploaded 5 videos of book editors giving details on how certain titles came to be as a start to their series last week. S&S Executive VP and Chief Digital Officer Ellie Hirschhorn was quoted in the press release as saying that the series is “offering new and revealing information that can enhance and inform the reading experience” since “apart from the author, nobody knows a book as well as its editor.”

Digital Book World’s Jeremy Greenfield noted about the videos, “In the book publishing world, authors have traditionally been the brand: Everyone wants to buy the new James Patterson title, not necessarily the latest release from his publisher, Hachette.” So from here, we take that building a brand would ultimately lead to readers trusting a company for its judgment in acquiring great books, instead of relying on established authors or comparative titles to sell the book. But it doesn’t make sense for the average reader to buy something with this in mind, since publishers have such a wide variety of styles and genres.

Along with building a brand for the publisher as a whole instead of a specific author, he added that “this series of videos is another small way that publishers are saying to authors — and readers — that they add value.”

We talked to Nellie Kurtzman, co-founder and CEO of the video content agency Kid & the Wolf, which primarily creates book trailers, to get a little insight into a publishing marketer’s approach to videos. Before founding Kid & the Wolf, Kurtzman was the VP, Marketing of Little, Brown Books for Young Readers.

Kurtzman said of the Simon & Schuster videos, “It tells the behind the scenes, what people don’t know,” confirming that the videos prove the publishers’ worth to the public by bringing awareness to what publishers actually do for books.

Here are a few videos we found from publishing houses for comparison on how they’re going about (possibly) building their brand. First here’s one of the S&S ‘Behind the Book’ videos:


Read More »

Top 5 Publishing Articles/Blog Posts of the Week 8/4-8/8

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.

Book Industry Study Group released new findings showing that students are spending less time with textbooks and more time with online study materials.

A report from the International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions indicates that libraries need to iron out the best practices to get ebooks to patrons.

Are religious book publishers the only publishers that have consumers loyal to their brand?

Despite a slight decrease in traditionally published print titles, Bowker finds that US sales are holding steady.

The New York Times delved into popular ebook subscription services to see how they compare to each other.

Columbia Publishing Course 2014 Super-Grad

The super-grad is back! The Columbia Publishing Course (formerly the Radcliffe Publishing Course) graduates are back in action with backgrounds and hobbies just as impressive as past years’. Publishing Trends has once again created an amalgam of the most exotic and surprising parts of the students’ biographies, so the industry can see the type of superhuman Publishing Course graduates with whom it will be dealing. With the exception of a few connective phrases, all words used are the students’ own.


This year’s Typical Columbia Publishing Course Grad (we’ll call her Hester) is a Hometown, USA gal —where she is unabashedly proud to have two of her own ice cream flavors commercially produced. A former fashion model and avid reader since childhood, she once boasted in a letter from summer camp “I am the best speller in my cabin.” Hester spent her childhood enthusiastically caring for her dog and several “pet” crossbred cattle. Her writing career started early when, at the age of eleven, she became her hometown newspaper’s first film critic, a position she held for eight years.

During college, she started up a branch of a new SAT tutoring company, moonlighted as a semiprofessional poker player, and worked twenty-five hours a week in the college’s mailroom, where she learned more about people through unsealed packages than she could have in years of conversation. A one-time competitive yo-yoer, her love of adventure led her to serve as a wilderness guide in northern Ontario, spend a semester off the grid in the backcountry of New Zealand, manage a national project to reduce teen pregnancy in partnership with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; and manage a division of over 20 grant-funded programs for a mental health department in the largest non-profit home health care agency in the US. She spent the past two years in Orange County, California, working in architecture for the Walt Disney Company and helping tell classic tales through brick, mortar, and plenty of themed paint. She is also co-founder of the Jewelry Project, an organization that promotes women’s financial independence through jewelry making in the Ecuadorian Amazon.

Her interest in publishing developed during her time as senior editor on The Brown Daily Herald, where she also enjoyed recruiting writers with promises of homemade pie. She has been a library gremlin in conservation and digitization, and her love of publishing encouraged her to begin a global collection of Harry Potter international editions. She currently possesses titles in their British, Icelandic, Italian, and Japanese editions.

In her free time, Hester enjoys breakdancing and writing poetry. Since being awarded the Stanley Colbert Chapbook Award in the spring of 2013, she manages her personal website where she publishes and promotes the sale of the comics she has written, drawn, and stapled together, and keeps her leadership skills fresh as a certified Spin® instructor. She also wrote and illustrated a children’s book about a fox and a mouse who both love chocolate.


To find out more about seeing participants’ resumes (or to read the real biographies) please contact Columbia Publishing Course Assistant Director, Stephanie Chan at (212) 854-9775 or swc37 at Columbia dot edu.

New York’s other major summer publishing course, New York University’s Summer Publishing Institute, celebrated its 36th year this summer. To learn more about NYU’s eligible grads or about the program, contact Executive Director Andrea Chambers at (212) 992-3226 or andrea.chambers at nyu dot edu.