Sunday, December 09, 2018

Publiishers Lunch

Following October's merger of the Crown Publishing Group with the Random House Publishing Group, under the direction of president and publisher Gina Centrello, she has announced further realignments at the Crown publishing units. Also, the combined division will officially be known as Random House.

SVP, publisher, Crown, Molly Stern will be leaving the company as a result of those additional changes, while Gillian Blake is moving over from Holt as svp, editor-in-chief, Crown Trade, starting January 22. Centrello writes in a separate memo that, "Molly’s commitment to publishing excellence and editorial leadership, and her passionate advocacy for our authors’ works, have defined her.... [She] is a gifted publishing and editorial executive whose accomplishments on behalf of our books and our company are greatly respected and truly appreciated."

David Drake is promoted to the new role of evp, Crown Publishing, publisher, Crown, responsible for Crown, Crown Archetype, Hogarth, Tim Duggan Books, Three Rivers Press, and Broadway Books. (Those are now the Crown Trade group, and Blake will report to Drake.) He will also "take an active role in helping to direct the acquisition and publishing strategy for the imprints" under Aaron Wehner, who is promoted to evp, Crown Publishing, publisher, Clarkson Potter, Ten Speed Press, Harmony and Rodale Books. (These lines comprise "illustrated and prescriptive non-fiction.") Tina Constable continues to lead Christian, business and conservative book publishing, now as evp, publisher, WaterBrook, Multnomah, Image, Convergent, Currency, and Forum, and Drake, Wehner and Constable all report to Centrello.

In related promotions: Annsley Rosner becomes svp, deputy publisher, Crown Trade, and Tim Duggan is now an svp, with both reporting to Drake. Jill Flaxman moves up to svp, deputy publisher, for Clarkson Potter, Harmony, Rodale Books, and Ten Speed Press. Campbell Wharton moves up to vp, deputy publisher, WaterBrook, Multnomah, Image, Convergent, Currency, and Forum. Beyond that, "Additional news about our plans for these imprint groups, as well as appointments to support them, will be announced in the New Year."

Centrello writes: "Under the leadership of David, Aaron, and Tina, the opportunities are enormous to build upon the traditional Crown publishing strengths, and for Random House to provide established and emerging authors with ever-greater publishing platforms and reader-connectivity."

Separately, Holt president and publisher Steve Rubin wrote of Blake's departure as December 14, calling her role in the "transformation" of Holt alongside him "pivotal." He closed, "I will miss her no-nonsense, focused, funny and unselfish wonderfully affable personality, as I know we all will."

At Scholastic Trade, Liza Baker has been promoted to vp, associate publisher of Cartwheel Books, Orchard Books and Acorn and Branches; Katie Carella to executive editor of Acorn and Branches; Jessica Tice-Gilbert moves up to associate art director of Cartwheel Books and Orchard Books; Yaffa Jaskoll is now executive art director, trade fiction; Celia Lee to senior editor of Cartwheel Books and Orchard Books; and Alexis Lassiter is sales associate.

Scholastic also announced a number of new hires. Angie Mason has joined as senior designer, trade creative services. She was previously at Alex Brands. Ingrid Paredes moves over to trade team from the education division, becoming publishing special projects manager. Katie Fitch has joined as associate art director, licensing and brands. She was previously at Harper Children's. Taylan Salvati has joined as brand publicity specialist. She was previously at Wunderkind PR.

The late Peter Mayer, former ceo of Penguin Books and president of the Overlook Press, was honored at a memorial service in east London on Thursday. Family and former colleagues spoke, including Profile managing director Andrew Franklin, who called Mayer, "the visionary who, more than any other, transformed English-language publishing. He took a moribund, money-losing institution and turned it into the world's most admired and successful publishing company."

Poet Ailey O'Toole's debut collection was cancelled by Rhythm and Bones Press last week, after the publisher received an email detailing plagiarism accusations. Kristina Conrad, a former Barnes & Noble coworker of O'Toole's noticed similarities between lines from O'Toole's Pushcart prize-nominated poem and another poem by Rachel McKibbens, and alerted the publisher on November 29. Rhythm and Bone Press said, "Please know we do NOT accept or tolerate plagiarism. We are hurt, we feel the pain & anger of those who have had work stolen." In a statement to the Guardian, O'Toole said, "As a writer myself, I understand the importance of the written word, and the creativity and ownership that goes into both poetry and prose...It was a mistake, and I have learned a lot from having made it."

A new Barnes & Noble concept store is opening in the Woodbury suburb of St. Paul, MN. The $1.4 million store in CityPlace will be 21,000 square feet, and is set to open in May 2019. Another Barnes & Noble location in Woodbury has been there since 1992 and "will probably close when the new one opens."

Amazon's permit for a planned bookstore in Meridian, ID expired. The city finished its review of the retailer's application for a store in the Village at Meridian in April, but never received the cost estimate for work necessary to issue a permit. Planning division manager for the city Caleb Hood said the company was informed the permit was about to expire and never responded.

Patricia Lockwood's Priestdaddy won the 2018 Thurber Prize for American Humor.

Adam Weymouth's Kings of the Yukon won the Sunday Times/Peters Fraser + Dunlop Young Writer of the Year Award in the UK.

The Book Industry Study Group presented its annual Service Awards at their town hall. Laurie Stark at Penguin Random House received the Industry Connector Award, recognizing "an individual whose work helps BISG serve as an information hub for the industry." Richard Stark at Barnes & Noble won the Standards Bearer Award, for "advocacy for industry standards and best practices." Pat Payton of Bowker/ProQuest was given the Explorer Award, recognizing "an individual, group or project that has shaped the conversation about publishing." Angela Bole received the Community Builder Award, for "significant work done to engage a representative set of stakeholders."

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