Publishing Trendsetter is a production of Market Partners International and Publishing Trends.

Top 5 Publishing News Stories 9/18-9/22

number_5_orangeEvery week we recommend 5 publishing news stories that young book professionals should read to feel more connected to what’s going on in the industry. There are only 5, so even if you weren’t able to read a thing all week, these should help keep you in the know.

Annie Proulx will receive this year’s Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters.

What Happened moved 300,000 copies in its first week on sale (and spurred controversy on Amazon).

Rolling Stone is going up for sale.

Google has integrated local library collections in its search feature.

Audible opened a Canadian e-store.

Top 5 Publishing News Stories 9/11-9/15

number_5_orangeEvery week we recommend 5 publishing news stories that young book professionals should read to feel more connected to what’s going on in the industry. There are only 5, so even if you weren’t able to read a thing all week, these should help keep you in the know.

Melville House is sending copies of A Citizen’s Guide to Impeachment to members of Congress. 

The first author to write a novel on a computer has died.

Bookselling Without Borders launched a Kickstarter to fund scholarships to international book fairs.

Half of the authors on the shortlist for the Man Booker Prize are American.

The National Book Foundation released all of its longlists this week.

Bonus: In Key West, Ernest Hemingway‘s cats survived Hurricane Irma just fine.

Top 5 Publishing News Stories 9/4-9/8

number_5_orangeEvery week we recommend 5 publishing news stories that young book professionals should read to feel more connected to what’s going on in the industry. There are only 5, so even if you weren’t able to read a thing all week, these should help keep you in the know.

Amazon is seeking out a location for a second American headquarters.

Kobo rolled out audiobook sales and a corresponding subscription plan this week. 

Conservative publisher Regnery has cut ties with New York Times, citing the paper’s “liberal bias.”

James Patterson is donating $1.75 million to school libraries nationwide. 

A book by Hillary Clinton’s pastor has been pulled in light of evidence of plagiarism

NYC Area Job Alert at NYU Center for Publishing

We interrupt your regular Trendsetter programming for a special announcement: Calling all experienced Trendsetters! Our friends at the New York University Center for Publishing are looking for an Assistant Director for their programs.

Job description:

The Center for Publishing is seeking an individual to assist the Director with the strategic and administrative planning, policy development for the department. Responsibilities include: plan for and manage the Summer Publishing Institute including all pre-program recruitment, admission, marketing and direct communication with interested and accepted students. Administer all on site aspects of the program and manage on site program events including orientation, alumni reception, career fair, industry visits, and workshops. Serve as direct liaison with students communicating all program policies, homework and events for the Summer Center Publishing Institute. Work with the Director on pre-program planning for the annual PubTechConnect conference, serving as liaison with Publishers Weekly. Execute logistics for PubTechConnect and other departmental events by overseeing and managing catering, facilities, AV, and external vendors. Work with the Director on departmental programs and events by researching speakers, delivering reports on competing events, drafting invitations, reviewing marketing copy, and tracking responses. Advise students as needed for the graduate program.  Recommend, orient, and evaluate adjunct faculty for the graduate program. Plan and implement marketing events to recruit students; select faculty to participate and make presentations. Manage departmental social media accounts and help plan social media strategy. Supervise clerical staff. 

If you want to learn more or apply, check out the full posting here

Top 5 Publishing News Stories 8/28-9/1

number_5_orangeEvery week we recommend 5 publishing news stories that young book professionals should read to feel more connected to what’s going on in the industry. There are only 5, so even if you weren’t able to read a thing all week, these should help keep you in the know.

In the wake of Hurricane Harvey, New York publishers and Houston bookstores are lending a hand.

Despite community objections, the library system of Escondido, CA will be privatized.

The Book Industry Study Group changed its governing structure.

An alt-right children’s book was pulled over copyright infringement.

John Smelcer’s PEN Award nomination has been rescinded in light of new information about his past.

Bonus: Terry Pratchett’s hard drive was run over by a steamroller, per the late author’s wishes.

The Beginner’s Guide to Publishing Programs

There’s a lot of ways to gain extra skills and knowledge about the publishing industry, whether you’re just starting out or a seasoned professional looking to bulk up your resume. It should come as no surprise that many of them involve colleges and universities. Here’s a collection of the American institutions offering additional education on publishing. These programs range from certificate courses to multi-year graduate programs. 

Please note that the contents of this guide, including tuition prices, are current as of August 2017 and subject to change. Additionally, the costs listed are tuition-only. They do not include additional fees, boarding costs, etc. 

Click here to view the entire beginner’s guide to Publishing Programs

Did we miss a program? Please leave us a comment to let us know, and we’ll add it!

Top 5 Publishing News Stories 8/21-8/25

number_5_orangeEvery week we recommend 5 publishing news stories that young book professionals should read to feel more connected to what’s going on in the industry. There are only 5, so even if you weren’t able to read a thing all week, these should help keep you in the know.

The New York Times is revamping its books coverage.

Amazon’s “one-click” patent expires next month.

Cambridge University Press reversed the decision to censor its articles for China Quarterly.

The ongoing ReDigi case raises questions about the possibility of a used ebook market.

The NYT reissued the YA bestseller list after suspicion rose that the top title got there through nefarious means.

Top 5 Publishing News Stories 8/14-8/18

number_5_orangeEvery week we recommend 5 publishing news stories that young book professionals should read to feel more connected to what’s going on in the industry. There are only 5, so even if you weren’t able to read a thing all week, these should help keep you in the know.

HarperCollins Christian Publishing launched their own self-publishing arm

The Larry Ashmead Award was given to Annie Chagnot this week. 

Trump claims Amazon is damaging to retailers. 

A bookstore in Charlottesville, VA vows to stay open amidst the protests.

Author V.E. Schwab spoke out about LGBT parts of her book being censored in Russia. 

How We Got Into Publishing: Survey Results

Sometimes I think folks outside the industry must think there’s some secret trick to break into publishing. In a way, it makes sense. It’s a global business that’s got its American heart in New York City, like some other industries that people and Hollywood movies often laud: fashion, theatre, magazines, and so on. That must be why we all get asked how we got started, or if we could let a friend of a friend pick our brain over a drink or coffee. So at the beginning of the summer, as my inbox was filling up with requests from new graduates to tell them just how I did it, I wanted to know how all of you did it. I made a survey and got 63 responses. (Thank you, survey-takers!)

An important note about my survey: I am not a survey writer. I think this is perhaps the second survey I have ever written in my adult life. Because of this, I made some questions too open-ended, or too open to interpretation, didn’t mark as many questions “must respond” as I should have; as the saying goes, hindsight is 20/20. Be that as it may, there’s still a lot of good things to go through in these responses. (Note: This survey had some branches to it, so not every respondent answered every question. Additionally, I am not analyzing every question in this writeup.)

One of the best aspects of the responses is the range of folks who responded. Respondents ranged in age from 23-61 and their positions ranged from Intern, to Literary Scout, to a Manager of Creative Services. Let’s look at what everyone had to say about their entry into publishing.

To break this graph down into specifics, 41.25% of respondents went directly into publishing after they completed undergrad, 12.7% went to grad school first, 25.4% were in another career track first, and 20.63% were “other.” But as it turns out, a lot of the answers to this question come down to perception.

“Other” respondents were prompted to specify their circumstance. The most popular answers for “other” included working first, then grad school, then publishing. There were also several responses citing publishing summer courses, and/or working in a bookstore. These respondents didn’t consider “retail” or “menial” jobs as an “other career track.” But a lot of the “other” respondents did have what I would personally consider literary minded positions, like the aforementioned bookstore employees, there was a journalist, and someone working at a literary non-profit.

On the other hand, some of those who responded “Other Career Track First” did say that that career was retail, and one said bookstore. (An example of my poor phrasing of the questions, as well as a matter of perception.)  Four respondents in this section indicated that their first career track was literary in some way.

And as for the grad school first folks, 62.5% of respondents did do something literary with their degree. The “Other” respondent got their masters in library science and an MBA.

I asked what previous jobs and/or skills respondents felt made them a good candidate to work in publishing. The overwhelming answer? Internships. Almost 40% of answers listing what made them good candidates said their internships prior to landing their publishing jobs made them good job candidates. The second most commonly listed trait in those responses was writing skills, which was mentioned in 28% of the answers. Third most common answer was loving to read. Just because there were a lot of similarities in responses doesn’t mean the skill sets that bring people into publishing are uniform. Respondents mentioned previous job experience with places like MTV, city planning, a beauty studio, and local lobbyists. Of course, there were entries more along the lines of what one might expect to see: local library experience, journalism, literary magazines, and so forth.

Now, when I asked what made them want to work in publishing, 22 out of 41 respondents wrote out in some way that they simply love books. Not a surprise, since we’re generally considered a group of nerdy readers in this industry. But there were some answers that caught my notice that wasn’t necessarily tied first and foremost into an abiding love of books:

  • “I wanted to work at a company whose mission I believed in – didn’t have to be publishing, but a lot of publishing houses fell into that category for me.”
  • “Honestly I didn’t know what else to do with myself – it was 20 years ago and I was just so tired of music industry stuff that I asked myself what else I liked, and the answer was basically books, because I lived in NYC and film never seemed like a thing real people worked in.”
  • “It seemed more realistic than writing poetry for a living.”
  • “I wanted a stable desk job that would allow me to do some of the things I love–help people improve their writing, write, spec out new series.”

So here we are, from folks who fought tooth and nail to be here because it’s something we are passionate about to folks who just fell into this because it was a stable job. All in all, this survey confirmed what I imagine we’ve all already known: there’s no one right way to get into the industry. Some survey-takers were able to remain unemployed until they landed their first publishing job, while others worked several menial (their word, not mine) jobs until they got a publishing gig. Some worked for years in entirely different fields before simply happening upon a career in books. There are those who got their MFAs in creative writing or even publishing before diving in. The possibilities go on and on. I take comfort in the fact that there’s no “right way” to join our industry. It means we come from a variety of experiences and skills to make up an industry of people with varied skill sets.

Top 5 Publishing News Stories 8/7-8/11

number_5_orangeEvery week we recommend 5 publishing news stories that young book professionals should read to feel more connected to what’s going on in the industry. There are only 5, so even if you weren’t able to read a thing all week, these should help keep you in the know.

Netflix and Barnes & Noble Education both made acquisitions this week. 

Children’s books are addressing the refugee crisis.

LeVar Burton‘s famous catchphrase has landed him in legal trouble.

Amazon told booksellers to speed up their delivery times.

The Dragon Awards have seen two authors withdraw their nominated books.

Bonus: Audible.com and Cesar Millan have launched a series of audiobooks for dogs.