Publishers Weekly June 28, 2021

Publishers Weekly magazine is the definitive professional resource covering every aspect of book publishing and book selling. Over 20,000 book and media professionals turn to Publishers Weekly each week for news and information. Publishers Weekly covers the creation, production, marketing and sale of the written word in book, audio, video and electronic formats.

United States
PWxyz, LLC
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51 Numéros

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1 min
the week in publishing

Binc announced that it is awarding $1.1 million to 115 bookstores and comic shops. The grants are made possible by the Survive to Thrive program the foundation created with the support of Ingram Content Group earlier this year. Comics publisher Dynamite Entertainment is partnering with Curiosity Ink Media, a producer of original children’s and family multiplatform entertainment, to create new children’s books. HarperCollins has acquired world publishing rights to the archives of Martin Luther King Jr. The first new titles developed from the archives are expected to be released in January 2022, coinciding with Martin Luther King Jr. Day. Wattpad and Naver’s Webtoon are merging their film and television production studios under the name Wattpad Webtoon Studios and committing $100 million to content development and production financing. Lisa Bayer, director of the University of…

6 min
“amplify the dialogue”

People of Color in Publishing and Latinx in Publishing collaborated on an online survey in summer and fall 2018, reaching out to current and former BIPOC industry members about the extent to which they’ve experienced racism on the job. The results of the survey are now being released in a report, “Workplace Racism Survey,” that documents the ways racism manifests itself at publishing houses. (Organizers delayed the release of the findings because of the pandemic and the uncertainty it created about the future of the industry.) Of those who responded, 72.9% reported experiencing microaggressions—brief, commonplace encounters that communicate racial prejudice or cultural diminishment. And the survey chronicles numerous instances in which junior and midlevel BIPOC professionals encountered half-hearted or poorly managed efforts at diversity where they work. Of the people of…

4 min
blackstone thrives with physical audio

In an era when digital downloads have led the audiobook industry to nine straight years of double-digit sales growth, independent, Ashland, Ore.–based Blackstone Audio, a division of Blackstone Publishing, is a bit of an out-lier. Like other major audio publishers, Blackstone has seen its digital sales grow by double digits in both the trade and library markets in the past 12 months—sparked in part by consumers’ increased digital consumption during the pandemic. But Blackstone’s physical audio sales have also had double-digit gains over the past year, whereas other publishers have largely given up on the format. In fact, the company has established itself as the industry’s dominant producer of audiobooks on CD and MP3-CD (a format that it pioneered). According to Anne Fonteneau, Blackstone Publish-ing’s chief sales officer, this positioning…

4 min
bookselling profile: homer bookstore

Homer Bookstore Homer, Alaska Date founded: 1974 Employees: 6 Size: 2,000 sq. ft. Titles in stock: 12,000 The Homer Bookstore is about as far away from New York City as one can get within the United States: 4,585 miles, to be exact. Homer is a small city on Kachemak Bay, on Alaska’s Kenai Peninsula, and tourists come for halibut fishing and whale watching. But it’s also the state’s closest equivalent to a hipster haven—a Brooklyn or Austin of the far north—with 5,700 people in town and another 11,000 in the surrounding area. The Homer Bookstore is the oldest continually operating bookstore in the state, and one of the few places to buy new books within several hundred miles. The store was founded in 1974 by a former Peace Corp volunteer and for many years it was…

3 min

DEAL OF THE WEEK George’s Debut Goes to St. Martin’s In a seven-figure, two-book preempt, Sarah Cantin at St. Martin’s Press bought Bloomsbury UK assistant editor Jessica George’s debut novel, Maame. George was represented by Michelle Brower at Aevitas Creative Management, working on behalf of Jemima Forrester at U.K.-based David Higham Associates. The book, St. Martin’s said, follows a 20-something British Ghanaian woman in London who is navigating “family conflict, dating, unfulfilling work, roommates who aren’t quite friends, grief, and cultural differences in the wake of a personal tragedy.” The novel was compared, in pitches, to The Other Black Girl and Queenie. In the U.K., Hodder & Stoughton won Maame in an eight-house auction. Podcasters Talk Race at Park Row Yseult Polfliet Mukantabana and Hannah Summerhill, who cohost the Kinswomen podcast, sold…

2 min
behind the bestsellers

In Clubland On June 15, Oprah announced her latest book club pick, Nathan Harris’s The Sweetness of Water, which lands at #19 in hardcover fiction. “Harris’s ambitious debut explores the aftermath of the Emancipation Proclamation in rural Georgia,” our starred review said. The author “writes in intelligent, down-to-earth prose and shows a keen understanding of his characters,” the review continued, “and while the plot leads to several tragic events, there’s a tinge of hope at the end.” In a prepub interview with PW, Harris discussed the novel’s roots. “I was influenced by classic sweeping epic books,” he said. “These were the books that moved me, that feeling when you’re a kid and you turn that last page. So one morning I sat down and gave it a try.” NEW & NOTABLE WHAT IS…