Sweet Home Chicago: Publisher Profiles

Publisher Profile: Ivan R. Dee

Chicago-based publisher Ivan R. Dee has been around for more than 20 years as a publisher of serious nonfiction for general readers. Its focus is in history, politics, biography, literature, philosophy, theater, and … baseball. This local publisher boasts such authors as Albert Camus, Anton Chekhov, Aldous Huxley, Henrik Ibsen, Ogden Nash, and Carl Sandburg, among many other notables.

Ivan R. Dee is home to two imprints: New Amsterdam Books, which focuses on art, art history, fiction in translation, and theater; and J. S. Sanders & Company, which publishes in Southern culture, history, and literature.

You can learn more about this venerable Chicago house at http://www.ivanrdee.com/

1. Tell us about your publishing house. What are its origins?

We were founded in 1989 by Ivan Dee, formerly editor-in-chief at Quadrangle Books, which published in Chicago in the 1960s and early 1970s before it was bought by the New York Times and moved to New York.

2. What are some of your best-selling titles?

To Sleep with the Angels; Nietzsche in 90 Minutes; Eyewitness Auschwitz; A Doll’s House; The Hedgehog and the Fox; Our Culture, What’s Left of It.

3. How many books do you publish annually? How many books per imprint? Is there a magic number?

Approx. 35 titles annually. No magic number.

4. How has digital media affected your publishing program?

Print review space has evaporated, forcing us to pay much greater attention to online publicity. But digital printing enables us to keep all books in print.

5. How as publishing changed over the past five years? What changes do you foresee in the next five years?

Too big a question to answer here. Briefly, the disappearance of substantial review media (important for our kinds of books) and the continuing demise of independent booksellers. E-books are a concern, but it’s too early to tell if they’ll be successful.

6. How would you characterize Chicago’s publishing world?


7. What is unique about operating out of Chicago (as opposed to New York or other publishing hubs)?

You don’t get caught up in fashion. In every other respect you can publish just as well as in New York.

Publisher Profile: Lake Claremont Press

Chicago-based Lake Claremont Press is all about this great city of ours, focusing its publishing offerings on books that “foster and reveal Chicago’s special identity by sharing what’s distinctive about our city’s history, culture, geography, built environment, spirit, people, and lore.”

Founder Sharon Wodehouse shared some insight into the history and goings-on at Lake Claremont. You can learn more about this uniquely Chicago house at https://www.lakeclaremont.com/index.php

1. Tell us about your publishing house. What are its origins?

Lake Claremont Press, founded in 1994 (this is our 15th anniversary year), is a small, independent, boutique publisher specializing in books on the Chicago area and its history. We’re trusted for our original and authentic “native’s” approach to covering the area’s history, culture, geography, spirit, etc. We want our book to focus on the common goods of “preserving the city’s past, exploring its present, and ensuring a future sense of place” (that’s the mission-statement stuff), while helping individual readers better appreciate, understand, and navigate the city around them. We look for authors who are passionate about the city and their subject, who won’t get tired of talking and thinking about it once the writing is done, and kind of buy into our mission of spreading the Chicago word.

2. What are some of your best-selling titles?

Chicago Haunts: Ghostlore of the Windy City

Graveyards of Chicago

The Chicago River

The Streets & San Man’s Guide to Chicago Eats

A Cook’s Guide to Chicago

3. How many books do you publish annually? How many books per imprint? Is there a magic number?

4-8 books. We typically sell 4,000-6,000 of each book, better sellers run 10,000-12,000, and our best was 50,000. We print in batches of 3,000-4,000 copies and aim to reprint at least once. Our model doesn’t require immediate success, we keep our books in print and actively promote them for as long as possible.

4. How has digital media affected your publishing program?

It hasn’t yet, but this appears to be the watershed year. We dabbled in e-books over 10 years ago without success and have been monitoring it from the sidelines ever since. We have plans for various electronic products that will start appearing in late 2009 and 2010.

5. How as publishing changed over the past five years? What changes do you foresee in the next five years?

Among other things, publishers have had to face the decline of the bookstore, the rise of digital media and that impact on the printed word, social media and that impact on consumers’ free time, the rise of DIY culture and the decline of media authority, the ubiquity of Amazon and the ability of people to sell used copies of books so easily. On the other hand, there are more entry points than ever into publishing, Amazon makes it easy and possible to promote and sell our books across the globe, people are buying books outside of bookstores, new technologies are making aspects of publishing easier. I expect more of the same but faster and with more extreme implications. We also have to contend with a new culture of “free” and like the music industry we may have to branch into ancillary areas to supplement mere books. I hope to see a renewed interest in “authority” and “authorship” as we all look for help in sifting through information overload

6. How would you characterize Chicago’s publishing world?

Varied, independent, focused, solid, creative, vibrant, hardworking, nice.

7. What is unique about operating out of Chicago (as opposed to New York or other publishing hubs)?

There’s not a publishing establishment here the way you think of the big New York houses, which probably gives us greater independence, freedom to experiment and approach the industry and its challenges creatively. There’s a greater variety of types and sizes of publishing houses and a greater ease for smaller companies to get noticed and play big(ger).


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Chicago is truly one of the great cities of the world, full of beautiful architecture, thriving businesses, and fabulous culture—and more than 125 publishers of books, magazines, newspapers, and other media.

Although Chicago is home to branch offices of some of the country’s largest publishers, including McGraw-Hill, Pearson, and Random House, our fine city also is home to scores of smaller, independent presses. Some of these smaller houses have been around for decades, while some are newer entries. Many specialize in topics related to Chicago or the Midwest. Some focus on publishing authors who are based in the area. But regardless of their tenure, each of these Chicago-based publishers features unique books covering a variety of timely subjects written by interesting authors.

Over the past few months, Chicago Publishing Network has featured CPN Profiles of publishing professionals located in the area. This month, we launch a new feature: the CPN Publisher Profile. We are proud to feature brief e-interviews from some of Chicago’s local publishers, and we encourage you to investigate their offerings. With literally hundreds of thousands of new books published every year, it can be a challenge to weed through all the new titles. We hope that the brief introductions to some of Chicago’s local publishers will spark—or reignite—interest in reading the works of your local publishing brethren.

First up: Chicago Review Press. In the coming weeks and months, we’ll also be featuring Ivan R. Dee, Lake Claremont Press, and others (in no particular order, although vaguely alphabetical at least at the beginning here). (If you’d like us to feature your house, please contact us at cpn @ bibliobibuli.com.)

CPN Publisher Profile: Chicago Review Press

Publisher Cynthia Sherry shared this information about Chicago Review Press, one of Chicago’s thriving independent publishers.

1. Tell us about your publishing house. What are its origins?

Co-owner Linda Matthews tells the best birth story of the company, but the short version is that the company was started back in 1973 by Curt Matthews when he was a graduate student at the University of Chicago and an editor at the Chicago Review (hence the name Chicago Review Press). Curt would come across things that were too long for the journal to publish, so he started publishing them on his own out of his garage. At one point Curt and Linda owned a bookstore and ran the publishing company out of a funeral parlor. They published one of the earliest graphic novels and a book called Home Invaders that was made into the movie The Thief starring James Caan. Three decades and many successes later, the company has grown to include one of the largest book distributors in the country, Independent Publishers Group (IPG). Linda recently took a hiatus to write the book Middling Folk, just published by Chicago Review Press, and Curt is still involved with the daily running of the company. I have been here for the past twenty years and still love it. It’s a dynamic company that is not afraid to take chances on new authors and controversial topics.

2. What are some of your best-selling titles?

Backyard Ballistics, Assata: An Autobiography, My Bloody Life, Outwitting Squirrels, Mole People.

3. How many books do you publish annually? 50-60 titles. How many books per imprint? That changes every season, but generally about 20 Lawrence Hill titles and 30 to 40 Chicago Review Press titles. Is there a magic number? I wish. I try to shoot for 60 new titles a year, but publishing is so unpredictable.

4. How has digital media affected your publishing program?

Producing e-books has kept us on our toes for the past two years. By the end of 2009, we will have our entire backlist of approximately 300 books available in all the various e-book formats. As anyone who has done this knows, it’s time consuming. It’s also chaotic as far as formats and pricing go. I find the whole digital revolution in publishing both exciting and scary. I’m excited about the potential to increase readership overall, particularly among young people, and to provide accessibility to the market for specialized titles. It’s a new revenue stream that’s helping us keep titles “in print” longer (we’re going to have to come up with a new phrase for that). I have also been pleasantly surprised by how many e-books our distributor IPG has been able to sell. We sold nearly 1,000 e-books each for Harry Truman’s Excellent Adventure and Family Secrets at the same time the hard covers were released, and it didn’t seem to hurt the hardcover sales in the least. That’s great news for the future. The scary part is the uncertainty about where the market for e-books is headed and whether or not authors and publishers will be fairly compensated for their books and content regardless of the format. I think behemoths like Amazon and Google undervalue the editorial, marketing, and authorial work that goes into producing e-books and the price pressure could be devastating for the book industry.

5. How has publishing changed over the past five years? What changes do you foresee in the next five years?

Five years ago we were straddling the fence between hard-copy and electronic ways of doing business, and now everything is electronic, from how we receive manuscripts and artwork to how we edit and typeset books. We used to ask copyeditors if they wanted to track changes in a Word file or mark up a print-out, but that just isn’t a question anymore. We trust in e-mail much more than we used to, and I think this has changed the relationship side of the business as well.

I hope things stabilize in the next five years and that the economic climate will become more favorable to authors and publishers. This last year has been a rollercoaster ride with newspapers and magazines going under, book review coverage being cut everywhere, independent bookstores struggling to compete with mega merchants, and even a mega merchant on the ropes. We need to drive more costs out of the business and encourage kids to read more books.

6. How would you characterize Chicago’s publishing world?

The publishing world here is small and disconnected, but welcoming. There is a lot of really interesting stuff being published in Chicago that flies under the radar of the New York houses. We have some great independent bookstores, independent publishers, and world-class writers. I am always happy to meet other publishing people at events and always am surprised by the chances they are taking and the way they are thinking about publishing.

7. What is unique about operating out of Chicago (as opposed to New York or other publishing hubs)?

It’s cheaper to live here. I like the Midwest sensibility: it’s more down-to-earth and honest, and we tend to favor substance over trends. I especially like all the interesting word nerds you find in this city.


In other news, Saturday, November 7 is National Bookstore Day, a new initiative brought to us by Publisher’s Weekly. This is the first year for this event, which is designed to celebrate bookstores and bookselling. With every bookstore closing, we lose a little something: a bit of culture, a favorite neighborhood spot, access to unique titles. Chicago is in no way immune to the vanishing bookstore, with several in the city and suburbs closing during the past few months.

So far, about 100 bookstores across the country will be participating in National Bookstore Day, and the number continues to grow. Chicago-area venues include Centuries & Sleuths Bookstore in Forest Park. Consider stopping by Centuries & Sleuths and/or your favorite local bookstore to celebrate (and buy!) books.

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What Do You Want from CPN?

Typically in this space, we share information about Chicagoland publishing news, events, gigs, and people. This month, though, we’re turning the tables to ask what you want to learn about. With more than 250 members through LinkedIn (http://www.linkedin.com/groups?home=&gid=145060&trk=anet_ug_hm), we’re sure that at least a few of the many media types in the area have an opinion or two about what they’d like to learn about. So, let us know! (And, please: no snippy comments. It takes so much energy to be mean. Being nice doesn’t cost a thing. If you want to write snippy things, get your own blog.)

While you’re thinking about publishing, check out this article/blog posting, which captures the good, the bad, and the ugly about book publishing from an editor’s perspective: http://bnreview.barnesandnoble.com/t5/Reviews-Essays/Redactor-Agonistes/ba-p/1367

In the meantime, here is some info about events going on in Chicagoland this month (be sure to check with the event host to confirm times, dates, locations, etc.):

Chicago’s own Lake Claremont Press is hosting several events this month, including:
An evening with Janice Metzger

  • Discussion & book signing (What Would Jane Say?)
  • Centuries & Sleuths, 7419 W. Madison, Forest Park
  • September 17, 7pm-9pm

A Cook’s Tour of Chicago with Marilyn Pocius. A Cook’s Guide to Chicago available for purchase at both events:

  • Deerfield Public Library, September 20, 2pm-3:30pm
  • Barrington Area Library, September 22, 7pm-8:30pm

September 17
CWIP’s Fall Kickoff
6-8:30 p.m.
Willis Tower (formerly known as Sears Tower)
CWIP’s big fall kickoff meeting features Joyce McGreevy, of National Geographic School Publishing Group, who will share how to keep pace in a publishing world changing at break-neck speed. Find solutions to map out a new career path or thrive in your present position. Registration required; fees vary. For information: http://www.cwip.org.

September 23
Literacy Chicago Open House
17 N State Street, Suite 1010, Chicago
We are proud to unveil our new headquarters with an Open House event. Please join us and check out our new space, find out about latest partnerships, and kick-off the 2009 academic year. Students, staff, and volunteers will be present to show our new space and to update you on Literacy Chicago’s progress in providing quality adult education and literacy courses during these troubled economic times. RSVP at info@literacychicago.org or (312) 870-1100

September 25
South Suburban College of Continuing Education
15800 State Street, South Holland
7:30-9:30 p.m.
“Becoming a Published Author”
This class ($29) requires registration. For information or to register: 708-596-2000, ext. 2231.

September 26
Pen to Press: The Fine Print in Self-Publishing
John Marshall Law School
315 S. Plymouth Court, Chicago
Topics at this day-long seminar include Publishing Industry Overview; Copyright and Fair Use; Understanding the Deal: Pitfalls and Best Practices; “Taking the Mic and Pleasing the Crowd” Keynote Address; Fact and Fiction: Defamation and Rights of Privacy and Publicity; and The Author’s Experience. Conference is open to the public. For information and to register: http://www.jmls.edu/events/092609penToPress.pdf

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Chicago Publishers

Here at Chicago Publishing Network we’re taking a bit of a break this month, but that doesn’t mean we won’t be sharing any news about jobs and events. This month is just an abridged version.

Chicago is home to more than 100 publishers who produce top-quality books, magazines, e-zines, newspapers, and various other publications in a variety of formats. Check out the links and investigate some of what Chicago publishing has to offer. If you’d like us to feature your organization, send the info to us at cpn @ bibliobibuli.com.

Chicago Publishing Gigs

Things are a little quiet gig-wise, but there are a few opportunities. If your organization is looking to add staff or fill a vacant position, you can share the info with us at cpn @ bibliobibuli.com, and we’ll do our best to post it in a timely manner. (Listing jobs with CPN is free!) You also can post the info at our LinkedIn site under the “jobs” section.

Associate Editor
BNP Media (Bensenville, Illinois) is looking for an associate editor to write features and departments for both print and online and manage supplements and special issues for Food Engineering and SDM magazines, among other things. Excellent proofreading, copyediting, organizational, communications and web/computer skills. Five years of experience working in a B-to-B publishing environment preferred. BA in Journalism or English desired. Some travel required. Forward resumes to: stepanekl@bnpmedia.com and fasslj@bnpmedia.com.

Associate Publisher — Acquisitions Editor
Zondervan (Grand Rapids, Michigan) is looking for someone with Bible publishing experience to lead their Bibles Digital Initiative in licensing rights, sell rights to Zondervan Bible content to software producers and manufacturers, and develop new Bible products, among other things. For information: http://www.bookjobs.com/viewjob.php?prmJobID=1309664

Managing Editor, Online Services
American Dietetic Association (Chicago) is looking for a managing editor to provide oversight for the content development of the ADA’s website, among other things. For information: http://www.careerbuilder.com/JobSeeker/Jobs/JobDetails.aspx?IPath=ILKGTV&ff=21&APath=

Marketing Communications Manager
Society of Critical Care Medicine (Mt. Prospect, Illinois) is looking for a marketing communications manager to develop and coordinate all SCCM marketing campaigns. For information: http://careers.associationforum.org/jobdetail.cfm?job=3163751

Marketing Manager
Emergency Nurses Association (Des Plaines, Illinois) is looking for a marketing manager for their Marketing and Membership Department to collaborate with market research to develop and execute pimary and secondary market research, assist with the development of detailed integrated marketing plans, and execute marketing campaigns, among other things. For information: http://careers.associationforum.org/jobdetail.cfm?job=3167260

Chicago Publishing Events

Thursday, August 20
CAN DO Networking Dinner
6 p.m.
Salerno’s Restaurant
1210 W. Grand Ave., Chicago
Chicago Creative Coalition is hosting a networking dinner. Easy ground rules: attendees should be in creative fields and do not have to be C3 members. Everyone buys their own food and drink. RSVP required. For information: http://www.chicagocreative.org/view-event.php?id=25

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Summer Publishing in Full Swing

Summer is in full swing, which means that publishing is, in many ways, going into snooze mode as editors, publishers, and authors take long weekends or go off on long vacations. That doesn’t mean that the industry is comatose, though. Jobs keep popping up, and there are some interesting events taking place around the city and suburbs.

Remember, posting jobs and events at CPN is free (!). Send details to us at cpn @ bibliobibuli.com.

Finally, check out this month’s CPN Profile of Chicago editor Ann Wildman. Ann’s editorial career has taken her from value publishing to trade publishing to education publishing, so she has some insider insight into various forms of publishing. She shares some of her insight in this month’s CPN Profile below.

Chicago Publishing Events

Be sure to check with the hosts or sponsors of events before showing up. Have fun!

Friday, July 10

The Science of Obscurity: An Official Printers’ Ball Lead-up Event!

7 p.m.

Jupiter Outpost

1139 West Fulton Market, Chicago

The Chicago Underground Library celebrates “The Science of Obscurity,” an evening of new, unpublished, and in-progress works presented as science fair experiments. The night will also feature a public book launch via catapult and the mass purging of rejection letters—community literary rituals in need of revival! This event is free and for all ages. Its other attractions include the dazzling debut of the Chicago Underground Library’s artist-designed drop boxes, debutantes, prizes, and a raffle! For information, visit http://www.poetryfoundation.org/programs/events.html or http://underground-library.org/

Saturday, July 11

Chicago Women in Publishing Annual Planning Meeting

9 a.m.–2 p.m.

Let the planning begin! Join CWIP board members in sharing new ideas at our annual planning meeting. We will discuss plans for the Fall Kickoff and gather topics for Wednesday night programs, networking events, the Web site, and the CWIP newsletter, Clips. We’ll start at 9 a.m. with a light breakfast and end at 2 p.m. Lunch will be provided. All members are welcome. Please RSVP by July 9 to Tulie O’Connor at tulieoconnor@hotmail.com. Directions to the meeting, which is being held at a CWIP member’s house, will be provided when you RSVP. For more information, call Tulie at 312-329-6049.

Sunday, July 12

Collaboration: An Official Printers’ Ball Lead-up Event!

2 p.m.

Woman Made Gallery

675 North Milwaukee Ave., Chicago

For this event, writers’ work and/or performance will involve interaction with other writers, performers, art forms, media, maybe even with the audience. Participants in the event include Simone Muench and Philip Jenks, presenting collaboratively written poetry; Mars Gamba-Adisa Caulton, working with her own music; performance poetry duo Marty McConnell and Andi Strickland; Jennifer Karmin, in a live improvised collaborative performance of the text-sound epic Aaaaaaaaaaalice with Chicago writers Carrie Olivia Adams, Daniel Godston, Laura Goldstein, Amira Hanafi, Coman Poon, and Larry Sawyer; and curator Nina Corwin in collaboration with Janice Misurell-Mitchell, internationally known improvisational flautist. For more information, visit http://www.womanmade.org/poetry.html

Monday, July 13

Author Event: Cokie Roberts

At noon

Harold Washington Library Center

Cindy Pritzker Auditorium

400 S. State Street, Chicago

Renowned journalist and political commentator Cokie Roberts discusses and signs her book, We Are Our Mothers’ Daughters. In this tenth anniversary edition, Roberts once again examines the nature of women’s roles through the revealing lens of her personal experience. From mother to mechanic, sister to soldier, Roberts reveals how much progress has now been made—and how much further we have to go. Updated and expanded to include a diverse new cast of women, this collection of essays offers tremendous insight into the opportunities and challenges that women encounter today. For information, visit http://www.chipublib.org/events/details/id/29435/

Tuesday, July 14

Use the Book You Didn’t Know You’d Written to Market Your Skills

5 p.m.

National-Louis University, Room 5008

122 S. Michigan Ave., Chicago

Don’t think you can write a book? Two-time IWOC president Jim Kepler says you probably already have, and don’t even know it! He’ll explain how to work material you’ve already created into a book, how to sell it, and where to go from there. Networking with refreshments begins at 5 p.m.; the discussion begins at 6 p.m. A buy-your-own-dinner networking event will follow the program at a nearby restaurant. Free for IWOC members; $15 for nonmembers. For information, visit http://www.iwoc.org/iwoc_events.htm

Tuesday, July 14

Author Event: C. Wyatt Evans

6 p.m.

Harold Washington Library Center

400 S. State Street, Chicago

C. Wyatt Evans will read from and discuss his illuminating and humorous book about the history of John Wilkes Booth as a romantic, doomed assassin, and the way his image held the public imagination long after his death. For information, visit http://www.chipublib.org/events/details/id/29501/

Wednesday, July 15

Call for Entries: 2009 Book & Media Show

Chicago Book Clinic proudly announces a Call for Entries in its 58th Show. The deadline for entries is July 15, 2009. The goal is to demonstrate the outstanding quality of publishing in the Midwest and to recognize the importance of books (or book design) and multimedia in our society. We invite the publishing community to enter their best works.

Visit http://chicagobookclinic.org/wp-content/uploads/2009/06/bm09_callforentries.pdf to download the entry form. See http://chicagobookclinic.org/news/ for additional information.

Thursday, July 16

Chicago Creative Coalition Networking Dinner

6 p.m.

Moody’s Pub

5901 N. Broadway Street, Chicago

Get to know your creative peers at our monthly networking dinners where there are no agendas, no sales pitches, no boring speeches, and — ta da — no dues! We call them Creatives and Networking Dining Occasions, or for short, CAN DO Dinners. Join us and we’ll compare notes on who’s working, who isn’t, who has ideas, and who knows whom. In these challenging times, you can’t be too connected, so come on by. Easy ground rules: attendees should be in creative fields, but do not have to be C3 members. Everyone buys their own food and drink (minimum of $10) to keep the restaurants happy. RSVPs are necessary, and be sure to bring plenty of business cards. Ask to be seated at the C3 table. And, we’ll keep the locations moving around by attendee choice. RSVP to CanDo@chicagocreative.org. For information, visit http://www.chicagocreative.org/view-event.php?id=25

Wednesday, July 22–Sunday, July 26

25th Annual Newberry Library Book Fair

Hours vary

60 W. Walton Street, Chicago

Celebrate 25 years of inexpensive used books at the Newberry’s annual Book Fair. We have a record number of books to sell this year! More than 110,000 donated books will be sorted into 70 categories for your browsing convenience. With many books priced under $2, it’s easy to replenish your home library’s holdings on subjects ranging from antiques to zoology. Admission is free. For information, visit http://www.newberry.org/giving/events/Bookfair.html

Friday, July 31

The Fifth Annual Printer’s Ball

5 p.m.

Ludington Building, 1104 S. Wabash Ave., Chicago

Sponsored by Poetry magazine in collaboration with more than100 literary organizations. Featuring tons of free print available free of charge, offset and letterpress demonstrations, papermaking workshops, readings, live music, and surprises. For information, visit http://printersball.org/

Chicago Publishing Gigs

There are a number of opening for publishing and media jobs. This is just a smattering. Remember to check with the employer for additional details about the jobs listed below. Good luck!

Children’s Marketing & Publicity Associate

Sourcebooks, a leading independent book publisher, is seeking a marketing and publicity associate for our children’s imprint. This is a new position for our growing children’s book list and is available in either Chicago or New York. This position will be responsible for creating and implementing marketing and publicity campaigns to build sales, increase profitability and enhance the visibility of Sourcebooks Jabberwocky in the marketplace. Additional responsibilities include promoting our books and authors, planning author tours, developing strong press materials, and strategic marketing to libraries and bookstores. Minimum 3-4 years prior marketing and/or publicity experience required, preferably within children’s book publishing. This is an exciting opportunity for a multi-tasking individual with high energy, excellent organizational skills, creative thinking abilities, an ability to collaborate with cross-functional personnel, and strong communication & leadership skills. Please send a letter of interest, a resume and salary requirements to publicityjobs@sourcebooks.com.

Managing Editor

Goodheart-Willcox is searching for a management professional to develop and expand our Business and Marketing secondary and college level product line. This person will be responsible for acquisitions and new product development. This position will also edit, verify accuracy of content, and write (as needed) manuscripts for business and marketing texts and supplements. Responsibilities include: Determine the need for new Business and Marketing texts and support materials; Find qualified authors to write and develop new products; Research and remain informed about the strengths and weaknesses of competing products. This position is posted on CareerBuilder: http://careerbuilder.com/JobSeeker/Jobs/JobDetails.aspx?IPath=QHKCVGM&ff=21&APath=

Markets and News Editor

Magazine and Web publisher seeks financial journalist to write and edit trading strategy features and report on trading industry developments for the benefit of our readership of independent investors and traders. Responsibilities: Covering the financial markets and the investment/trading industry beyond the generalities of the mainstream press. Rewriting/editing stories, managing contributing writers and editors, and writing original features about trading and investments (stocks, futures, options, and forex/currencies). Requirements: At least 3-5 years of journalism/editorial experience, or an equivalent blend of financial market analysis and editorial experience. A writing/editing test will be mandatory for all applicants under consideration. This position is posted on CareerBuilder: http://careerbuilder.com/JobSeeker/Jobs/JobDetails.aspx?IPath=QHKCVGM&ff=21&APath=

Medical Editor

Our client company is a full service Medical Education Company that exclusively develops and executes a new standard of CME programs that educate healthcare professionals and ultimately, improve patient care. Our client offers innovative products, services, and audience generation solutions that greatly impact the dissemination of scientific information to physicians and allied health professionals. Duties include: Traffic editorial and medical writing for all scientific content and editorial needs; Proactively interface with project and program teams, scientific director, and graphics for all content and editorial needs; and Edit PowerPoint slides, slide notes, abstracts, manuscripts and other types of medical media and literature for Continuing Medical Education Programs. Requirements include: 7-10 years leading an editorial and writing team for continuing medical education (CME); Proactive in communicating with members across teams to manage editorial traffic efficiently; Manage resources and be able to identify freelance needs with Scientific Director/Associate Scientific Director. This job is posted on CareerBuilder: http://careerbuilder.com/JobSeeker/Jobs/JobDetails.aspx?IPath=QHKCVGM&ff=21&APath=

Producer, Partner Resources & Alliances

Responsible for day-to-day operation of delivering print and digital media using virtual resources, domestic suppliers, and offshore vendors. This strategic role will require interfacing directly with clients and vendors to secure and adhere to all technical guidelines for projects. Requirements include: Bachelor’s (business/media production); 5+ years managing media/print production; Able to establish workflows and manage resources; Experience with the latest publishing technologies (Adobe Creative Suite, InDesign, XML, HTML, Flash, content management systems); Digital media delivery and vendor knowledge; Has managed/established service levels and quality control standards. Apply online @ http://www.quarasan.com/careers

Science Editor

The University of Chicago seeks a science editor to electronically copy edit and revise manuscripts, research proposals, patent disclosures, figures and presentations for English grammar, clarity, accuracy, and conformity to Journal style. Maintain checklists of submission requirements for journals, templates of journal formatting styles for text and references, and a database of contacts. Monitor deadlines; create and maintain electronic copies of all documents; maintain group library, archives, calendar, and content of group web pages; process letters of recommendation. For information, visit https://jobopportunities.uchicago.edu/applicants/jsp/shared/frameset/Frameset.jsp?time=1246471513913

Senior Permissions Specialist

Houghton Mifflin Harcourt is a global education company with approximately $2.5 billion in revenue. We are currently seeking a Sr. Permissions Specialist for our Evanston office. Responsibilities include: Acts as liaison between Editorial, Design, and Project Management to facilitate the clearance of text permissions; Negotiates terms and conditions for use of previously published material in HMH K-12 product, securing licenses from other publishers, agents, authors and illustrators; Ensures timely clearance of assigned permissions. Negotiates most favorable fees, royalty terms and boilerplate contract language; Provides historical data for forecasting and monitoring budgets. Required: 5 years experience; BA/BS. Apply at http://www.hmhpub.apply2jobs.com

CPN Profile

Ann Wildman is an editor with the Wright Group at McGraw-Hill. Ann’s background includes theater and publishing, but publishing has been her focus for the past decade. As with many Chicago-area publishing professionals, Ann has passed through Publications International, which seems to be something of a publishing rite of passage. Her career has taken her from value publishing to trade publishing to education publishing.

How long have you been in publishing?

10 years

What was your first editorial job? Was it what you hoped it would be?

Assistant acquisitions editor at Publications International. I was excited about the research aspect of the position and the opportunity to learn from the other editors. As an assistant, you get to work on a variety of projects as you help the more senior editors. I had good editors, so I was able to work on some fun projects.

You’ve worked for value publishers, trade publishers, and education publishers. How do these organizations and their approaches to publishing differ from one another?

Each obviously has a different approach toward their market. Value publisher customers don’t pay a lot for the product, so budgets are very important in this type of publishing. Trade publishers need to be concerned about the perception of the book: do enough people know the author? is there a great interest in the topic at the moment? and how have this author’s books performed in the past? It is all about getting the book out in the market and creating a buzz about it. Educational publishers are dependant on schools, governments, and teachers. It is a completely different market. While we must make quality educational materials for students, we are really trying to sell the materials to the school boards and teachers since they are the decision makers. So educational books not only have to make learning interesting and understandable for the student, but the information needs to be presented in an uncomplicated manner for the teachers to digest quickly and to be differentiated enough for his or her diverse students and teaching methods. It is quite a challenge since we are trying to reach so many different teachers and learners.

How do you think publishing has changed in the past five years? 10 years?

The production cycle has definitely shortened, in half in some cases. There is not enough time to hone every aspect of the project in house, so you have to hire and trust good outside vendors or freelancers to do what they are being paid to do. This is also something that has changed recently. More work is being outsourced. I have worked exclusively with full-service vendors to create an outline, write, edit, and provide production for the projects I have worked on for the last three years. Publishers are keeping slim in-house staffs and staffing up or down with project workers and freelancers depending on the needs for the year.

What do you think is unique about Chicago-area publishing?

I have only worked in Chicago, so I don’t have anything to compare to. But I have met a lot of great people associated with the Chicago-area publishing industry and some of them have turned into long-time friends. While Chicago and the surrounding area is large, it is a small publishing community that is sort of like family. You keep running into distant relatives at the occasional reunion (i.e., new project), and you can rely on their support when you really need it.

What advice would you give to someone looking to start out or advance in Chicago-area publishing?

Don’t be afraid to show how good you are. Don’t be arrogant, but if you do good work, you have to remind your managers every so often. Let your managers know that you want to advance and lay out a plan with them to get you there. You should come up with specific, obtainable steps, and once you achieve these steps, things should work out. I always assumed managers knew their employees wanted to advance, so I wasn’t as vocal as I should have been sometimes. Also, start to assume some of the roles that are typical of the position you want. Managers will notice that you can already do some of the work and hopefully reward you. However, be careful what roles you take on—you don’t want to step on toes.

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June Is Busting Out All Over!

June sort of snuck up on me here. This month’s posting is a little tardy, but it’s not too late to include some great news about area events and jobs.

Of course, the big event of the month is Printer’s Row and the corresponding Lit Fest, which takes place June 6–7 in a number of locations in the city. The book fair alone, one of the largest in the Midwest, is great on its own, even if you can’t make it to the many author events taking place during the week. Printer’s Row and Lit Fest is just the tip of the iceberg. Check out other events taking place this month in Chicago Publishing Events. If you have an event you’d like us to share, send the info to us at cpn @ bibliobibuli.com.

Although the market is still tight, there are some good jobs out there for editorial and creative types. We’ve even managed to post some design-related gigs this month in Chicago Publishing Gigs. Remember, posting a job at CPN is free (!). Information about Chicago-area publishing jobs can be sent to us at cpn @ bibliobibuli.com.

Finally, check out this month’s CPN Profile of one of my favorite writers, Tricia Crisafulli. Tricia has been a writer for a long time now, and she’s made a terrific go of it. She shares some insights about her Chicago-based career in the Profile.

Chicago Publishing Events

Be sure to check with the hosts or sponsors of events before showing up. Have fun!

June 6–7

Printer’s Row Book Fair

10 a.m.–6 p.m.

Dearborn between Polk and Congress

The Midwest’s largest outdoor literary festival features dozens of events, scores of exhibitors, and thousands of books. Related events take place at various venues around the city. Many events are free and do not require tickets, although some do and some already are sold out. For information, visit http://www.chicagotribune.com/entertainment/events/printersrow/ and http://www.chipublib.org/events/details/id/27835/.

Saturday, June 6

CWIP Networking Breakfast

8:30 a.m.

Pancake Café

1292 Rickert Dr., Naperville

Open to all. Bring your business cards and ideas! RSVP to Rebecca Walker by e-mail: rebeccawalker@sbcglobal.net

Tuesday, June 9

IWOC Monthly Meeting

5 p.m.

22 South Michigan Avenue, Room 5008, Chicago

Networking and socializing begin at 5 p.m.; programs begin promptly at 6 p.m. Admission is free to all IWOC members and $15 for nonmembers. All IWOC programs and seminars are open to nonmembers. Reservations are not necessary for programs. A buy-your-own dinner follows every meeting.

Wednesday, June 10 & Thursday, June 11

Community Media Workshop: Making Media Connections Conference

Columbia College

1104 S. Wabash Ave., 8th Floor, Chicago

As part of the Chicago creative community, Chicago Creative Coalition (C3) supports the efforts of groups like the Community Media Workshop to advocate for and connect communications professionals. The 2009 CMW Making Media Connections Conference brings together community leaders, nonprofit communicators, journalists, publishers, media experts and the general public to discuss community stories and getting them told through traditional news and social media. Professionals and volunteers have been learning how to tell stories to advance their missions and strengthen their organizations at the Making Media Connections Conference for more than 15 years. For information, visit http://www.chicagocreative.org/view-event.php?id=32

Thursday, June 11

Mediabistro Chicago Cocktail Party

6–8 p.m.

O’Briens Riverwalk

45 E. Riverwalk South

We’ll be hanging out at the bar and catching up on all things media (and some not). Keep an eye out for our hosts, Stuart Cleland and Marianna Swallow, who will be happy to introduce you around. RSVP required. For information and to register, visit http://www.mediabistro.com/events/view_event.asp?id=12552

Thursday, June 18

CWIP Spring Reception

6–9 p.m.

Mrs. Murphy & Sons Irish Bistro

3905 N. Lincoln Ave., Chicago

Get ready for summer and celebrate another great year at CWIP’s annual Spring Reception. Members: $20; nonmembers $30. Register online at http://www.cwip.org/events.htm or call 773-508-0351, ext. 2.

Thursday, June 18

Writers on the Record with Victoria Lautman Presents Monica Ali

6 p.m.

Harold Washington Library Center, Cindy Pritzker Auditorium

400 S. State Street, Chicago

Monica Ali, born in Bangladesh and raised in London, became a sensation with her best-selling first novel, Brick Lane. Now, In the Kitchen explores the tense microcosm of an upscale hotel restaurant and its exuberantly multinational staff. When an employee turns up dead, the fragile balance is upended and for the executive chef, life will never be the same. For information, visit http://www.chipublib.org/events/details/id/27515/

Wednesday, June 24

Chicago Book Clinic University

Pearson Scott Foresman, Glenview

Publishing industry-related workshops and seminars will be held during the day. Fees apply for members and nonmembers alike. For information, visit http://chicagobookclinic.org/events-calendar/cbc-university/; call 630-833-4220; or e-mail klabounty@apexmanage.com

Chicago Publishing Gigs

Remember to check with the employer for additional details about the jobs listed below. Good luck!

Communications Coordinator

American Association of Endodontists


The American Association of Endodontists is currently seeking a Communications Coordinator with a strong writing background and project coordination skills to perform the following duties, among other things: write and copyedit news articles for print newsletter and journal; develop and coordinate production of product catalogs and product order forms; and coordinate production of Membership Directory and other membership marketing materials. For information, visit http://careers.associationforum.org/jobdetail.cfm?job=3129180

Copy Editor

Sears Holdings Corporation

Hoffman Estates, IL

The ideal candidate knows the ins and outs of writing and formatting language for online display and SEO—whether it’s text in a Web interface, an e-mail campaign, or a call to action on a landing page. For information, visit http://www.linkedin.com/jobs?viewJob=&jobId=690859&fromSearch=0&sik=1243980509445

Director, Public Relations

Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME)


The ACGME is currently seeking a Director, Public Relations to be responsible for managing the ACGME’s overall public relations program. The Director, Public Relations serves as the primary liaison between the ACGME and the media and assists in developing and implementing strategies and programs to reach key audiences with targeted messages and information. This position will interact with the ACGME Board, member organizations, and government bodies to clarify the mission and effectiveness of the ACGME. For information, visit http://www.linkedin.com/jobs?viewJob=&jobId=693088&fromSearch=1&sik=1243980509445

Editorial Assistant

ALA Editions (American Library Association)


Under minimal supervision provide primary administrative assistance for the Editorial Director, Marketing Manager, and three editors. Maintain project management database, tracking project data, generating reports, designing new reports. You will communicate with authors, facilitate project-based communication between editorial, production, and marketing groups. In addition, responsible for processing payments, organizing and maintaining project files (physical and electronic), some editing, writing, and manuscript evaluation. For information, visit https://cs.ala.org/jobs/viewjobs.cfm#444

Editorial Assistant

American Naturalist, University of Chicago


The Editorial Assistant assists the Editor and Managing Editor of the journal with all aspects of publication; serves as a liaison between editors and authors worldwide. Assists with coordinating the manuscript peer review process and helps maintain publication schedule. Coordinates the operation of the journal editorial office and helps supervise temporary workers. This job is posted on CareerBuilder: http://www.careerbuilder.com/JobSeeker/Jobs/JobDetails.aspx?IPath=QHKCV&ff=21&APath=

Editorial Interns


Naperville, IL

Sourcebooks, Inc., is looking for editorial interns (unpaid positions) in their copyediting and proofreading departments. For information, visit http://www.sourcebooks.com/about-us/careers.html

Graphic Designer

Learning Point Associates

Naperville, IL

The Graphic Designer will work with the Publication Services team and program staff throughout the organization to create high-quality, professional, visually compelling documents that are distributed to a research and policy audience. We produce a range of policy briefs, research synthesis and client reports which range from 8 to 40 pages in length. The position’s primary office location is in Naperville, Illinois. For information, visit http://jobs-learningpoint.icims.com/jobs/1306/job

Production Editor

Publishing Technology (American Library Association)


This unique position involves designing, proofreading, and typesetting books, catalogs, journals, and newsletters for ALA Publishing. Additional responsibilities include creating graphics, brochures, bookmarks, posters, and other collateral materials as well as designing and maintaining Web sites. Further duties may include production and editorial work for the divisions, offices, and round tables of ALA. The Production Editor will help ensure all publications and projects meet ALA’s high editorial, design, and production standards. For information, visit https://cs.ala.org/jobs/viewjobs.cfm#443

Project Editors



The McGraw-Hill Learning Group, a division of McGraw-Hill Education, has an opening for an Sr. Editor for the Contemporary product line in Chicago, IL to work on a contractual basis. Responsibilities include maintaining overall accountability for one or more specific programs including content, schedules, budget and project plans and providing innovative content input for manuscript preparation and review manuscript for editorial quality in preparation for production. For information, visit http://mcgraw-hill.com/cgi-mcgraw/careers/recruitsoft.pl?url=uscan&lang=_en

Publication Services Manager

Learning Point Associates

Naperville, IL

We are looking for a highly qualified person to manage the Publication Services unit, including internal and external editing, layout, and print production. This position is within the Business Development Office and reports to the Communications Director. For information, visit http://jobs-learningpoint.icims.com/jobs/1310/job

Senior Development Editor

American Medical Association


In this position, you will manage the editorial development of selected new and existing AMA Business Products books and products (print and electronic), maximizing product content, quality, packaging, and marketability while meeting deadline and budget goals. For information, visit http://www.bookjobs.com/viewjob.php?prmJobID=1309133

Sponsoring Editor—Math

McGraw-Hill Higher Education

Burr Ridge, IL

The sponsoring editor will, among other things: work with senior editorial management to develop short term and long term strategic and revenue goals for the publishing program; maintain and strengthen working relationships with authors through frequent contact; and work with internal digital development group and outside vendors to create and deliver complimentary digital products and strategies. For information, visit http://mcgraw-hill.com/cgi-mcgraw/careers/recruitsoft.pl?url=uscan&lang=_en

CPN Profile

Tricia Crisafulli, freelance writer extraordinaire, has a successful freelance business as a writer for a variety of clients, including corporations and publishers. As a reporter, writer, ghostwriter, and author in her own right, Tricia has worked on dozens of books. Her most recently published title is The House of Dimon (Wiley, 2009), which has made it on to the extended New York Times bestseller list.

How long have you been in publishing?

It depends on how you want to do the math! My first journalism job was as a “cub reporter” (as I was called in those days) at my hometown daily newspaper at the age of 17. From there I worked for small and mid-sized daily newspapers; went off to New York, where I worked as a business reporter for trade journals; and then moved to Chicago where my journalism career included five years as a reporter with Reuters. Eleven years ago I became a “writer for hire,” a ghostwriter, and a published author living in the Chicago area. So the short answer is I’ve been in publishing, in one form or another, all my life.

What was your first writing job? Was it what you hoped it would be?

Going back to the very beginning, I remember when I worked at that small town daily newspaper writing feature stories. I was hooked! I loved telling stories about other people (which, if I think about what I’m doing now, isn’t so far off the mark). Being a writer is the best education. Writers have the opportunities to immerse themselves in the world, or at least one small part of it, in a unique and fulfilling way.

You’ve written for news outlets, corporations, and book publishers, among other media, and you are a book author in your own right. How do these types of clients and assignments differ from one another?

There are more similarities than differences. One is the focus on the essential story. Whether it’s a wire service piece for Reuters or a book, there has to be a “hook” that involves the reader and makes it worth his/her time. Otherwise, it’s just words. Integrity of the information, research, accuracy … these are fundamental rules regardless of the venue.

There are some interesting differences, though. For example, with books there is usually a point of view. The author (whether it’s me or a client of mine for whom I am acting as the ghost writer) has a perspective or opinion and tries to persuade the reader. As a journalist, no opinions were allowed (although if you come right down to it, everything is a little subjective since the writer chooses what to focus on, the quotes, and even the words used). But in books, it’s more deliberate and pronounced.

I love book writing. With two books of my own published thus far, and something like 17 client books out there, I find it very easy to think in terms of 300 pages. But I will always be grateful to my journalism training, particularly at Reuters, which has helped me in terms of accuracy, consistency and speed.

As a published author, most recently of The House of Dimon, how would you characterize the publishing process?

The book publishing process is a combination of solo-journey and collaboration. As the author, it’s all on you. Do the research, the writing, the first few rounds of editing. Make your deadline, do the rewrites, and carry the ball forward. However, there is a lot of collaboration involved. When there is an editor involved, giving feedback chapter-by-chapter, it’s fantastic. (Sadly, this doesn’t always happen given the cutbacks in publishing). For writers, it can be hard to have someone else involved in the manuscript, but it’s very valuable feedback. It is so easy to be too close to a book and not see the proverbial big picture. At all times, the author is very much the engine of the train and has to be fully engaged in every part of the process—not just the writing and editing, of course, but marketing and promotion as well. Viewed as a team endeavor, though, it’s very satisfying.

As an author, how do you think BOOK publishing has changed in the past five years? 10 years?

The biggest change in publishing over the past 10 years—which as intensified over the past 5 years—is how competitive it is. It is just plain harder to get a book published these days. Book sales have fallen off, especially with the economy. Publishers are less willing to take a gamble on an unknown or lesser-known writer than someone who has a track record. In both nonfiction and fiction, the author has to demonstrate that he/she has a platform—meaning some way to market the book such as through a web site, conferences, speaking engagements, articles, or another means. In addition to the integrity of the written work, major consideration is given to how much marketing muscle the author can put behind a project.

Another development over the past 5-10 years has been the evolution of self-publishing, from a vanity endeavor to a bona fide alternative. Publishers will look increasingly at a self-published work that showed some good sales—once again, because the author had a platform to put behind it. What will be interesting to see is how book publishing evolves or merges with content publishing. I believe that there will always be a need for great content and engaging stories. What may change is how we read and access them.

As the creator of Faith, Hope, and Fiction (http://www.faithhopeandfiction.com), what trends are you seeing from writers?

I started http://www.FaithHopeandFiction.com as an e-literary magazine three years ago. It was a lark—and turned into a labor of love. I publish 11 free issues a year and I encourage submissions from writers. What I find is that most writers are comfortable with a form I call the “inspirational essay.” They write about something that happened or a recollection because of the lesson, message, or meaning that it contains. A few people will send me short stories, but writers who can do this well are fewer. However, I’m always up for a good story and I give lots of feedback. That’s been a real joy for me, too; to learn as I teach.

What do you think is unique about Chicago-area publishing?

I don’t think I can answer this one because my writing is all over the place! I have worked with publishers in New York and in California. Even as a Chicago-area journalist I was with Reuters, which was national and international. So from my perspective, Chicago-area publishing is part of a greater whole—or at least as I view it.

What advice would you give to someone looking to start out or advance in publishing?

Find a place to publish and write. Don’t worry about money or circulation or anything else. Get a toe in the door and go from there. Once you are published some place, you can use that to showcase what you’ve done at the next place and then the next place. I also like to remind people that WRITERS are people who WRITE. The word “publish” is not in there. Publishing is what happens after good writing occurs. In many ways it’s the business transaction part. So focus on the writing and accept feedback, even (and especially) the comments that make you cringe. It’s all a gift.

Making the leap from local to regional to national just takes a hook and a unique story to tell. Editors get bombarded with ideas and pitches, but if you can get someone’s attention, make sure the story is engaging and you are the best one to tell it.

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May Flowers

Dozens of folks from 71 publishing organizations across Chicagoland gathered at Maxim’s last night during “What’s New and What’s Next,” an event organized by Chicago Cultural Affairs, home to the Chicago Publishers Gallery, which is housed at the Chicago Cultural Center. Rick Kogan of the Chicago Tribune, Garrett Kiely of University of Chicago Press, and Donna Seaman of Booklist discussed their publishing inspirations, thoughts about the current state of the industry, the death of book reviews, and what makes Chicago publishing unique. Editors, writers, authors, publishers, and other publishing types joined in conversation.

Last night’s event reminded me of how vibrant Chicago publishing really is—if not a little disjointed. There are a lot of us publishing folk out there, but it’s not always easy to get our heads out of the manuscripts, leave the cube, and get out of the office to connect with one another. Here at Chicago Publishing Network, we hope to change all that—at least a little. By sharing news about events, jobs, and people in the industry, we can build bridges to connect each other, regardless of what we’re publishing.

With that, check out the plethora of Chicago publishing events coming up in May—there are plenty of opportunities to get out there. And, these are only the tip of the iceberg. The Chicago Public Library, University of Chicago Press, and area bookstores are hosting numerous author events this month, so be sure to check out those as well. If you have an event you’d like us to post, send the info to us at cpn @ bibliobibuli.com.

As Garrett Kiely said last night, “There’s absolutely no reason that Chicago shouldn’t be a publishing center.” We are a great publishing center, full of great people, great ideas, and great opportunities. For folks looking for new opportunities, check out Chicago Publishing Gigs below for several job openings across Chicagoland. If you know of a job, send us the info at cpn @ bibliobibuli.com.

Finally, check out the CPN Profile of Brad Hentz, manager of manufacturing and product delivery at Sourcebooks in Naperville. Brad has been with Sourcebooks for much of its meteoric rise from a tiny indie to the Midwest’s largest woman-owned independent publisher. He shares unique and interesting insight about Chicago publishing and what makes it special.

Chicago Publishing Events

Friday, May 1–Sunday, May 3

Great Books Chicago 2009: Eye of the Beholder

Doubletree Hotel

300 E. Ohio, Chicago

The three-day event features programs and readings during Great Book Foundation’s annual weekend festival of literature, arts, and music. Chicago-area residents may register for the book discussions ONLY for a registration price of $60. There is no other registration option and it is not possible to register for only some of the cultural events. You must register by phone for this option. For information, visit http://www.greatbooks.org/news/newsfeeddetail/article/great-books-chicago-2009-may-1-3-2009-150/news-browse/1.html.

Saturday, May 2

JAWS Multimedia Training

9 a.m.–5 p.m.

Columbia College

600 S. Michigan Ave., Chicago

The Journalism & Women Symposium (JAWS) is holding a “I Can Do It!” multimedia workshop in Chicago. Need to move beyond writing? Need to sharpen your skills in video shooting and editing, audio recording and editing, appearing on camera and using social networking sites to produce and promote good yourself, your blog and/or your work? This is your one-day seminar for all things needed to practice the journalism of today and the future. Learn more about the event.

Sunday, May 3

Fifth Wednesday Journal Spring 2009 Issue Release Party

4:30 p.m.

Jaks Tap, 901 W. Jackson, Chicago

Join our guest editors and featured readers as we celebrate another great issue!

No cover charge. Free soft drinks and coffee. Lisle-based Fifth Wednesday Journal is dedicated to supporting editors, contributors, and other literary friends. For information, visit http://fifthwednesdayjournal.com/news/index.shtml.

Tuesday, May 5

Current Advancements in Online Marketing and Social Networking

7–8:30 a.m.

Chicago Marriott Downtown

540 N. Michigan Ave., Chicago

Self-publishing firm Author Solutions hosts a free breakfast meeting for publishers, editors, marketing professionals, authors, and print professionals. Discover how your company can most effectively utilize the current advancements in online marketing and social networking. Learn how Twitter, Facebook, Linked In, Shelfari, and more can benefit your authors and increase book sales.

Wednesday, May 6

MSPC Monthly Meeting

Easy Technology for Running your Business

5–8:30 p.m.

Marcello’s Restaurant

645 W. North Ave., Chicago

Presenters: Tom Long (Solid Oak Consulting) and Bob Salita (Softworks Limited).

The Midwest Society of Professional Consultants hosts a technology event featuring a predinner session that will focus on several technologies that can have a positive impact on your business and will include issues such as teleconferencing, video conferencing, web conferencing, software-as-a-service, email, voice mail and fax management, PDA uses and synchronization, supporting multiple PCs with routers. After dinner, there will be breakout sessions to amplify details on specific technology topics selected by the audience. Register by phone (312-201-0596) or here: http://www.mspc.org/reservations.html.

Wednesday, May 6

Chicago Underground Library

7–9 p.m.

2129 N. Rockwell, Chicago

We meet monthly to catch up on all the goings-on at the Chicago Underground Library and to acquaint new volunteers with the project. This is the perfect way to get up to speed on what we’re working on in our programming, collection development, community outreach, cataloging, and, most importantly, to find out how you can make the CUL your own. All are welcome! For information, visit http://underground-library.org/?page_id=458 or e-mail info@underground-library.org.

Thursday, May 7

Author Event with Jed Fielding

12:15 p.m.

Chicago Cultural Center

North Gallery, First Floor, 78 E. Washington Street, Chicago

Jed Fielding, author of Look at me: Photographs from Mexico City, will speak.

For more information, please contact Stephanie Hlywak at 773-702-0376.

Thursday, May 7

35th Annual President’s Night

6 p.m. Registration; 7 p.m. Dinner/Program

Rosewood Restaurant & Banquets

9421 W. Higgins Road, Rosemont

Chicago Book Clinic hosts the 35th Annual President’s Night event. Tickets cost $75 through May 6; $85 on the day of event. For information and reservations, contact Chicago Book Clinic, 310 W. Lake Street, Suite 219, Elmhurst, IL 60126, call 630-833-4220, or e-mail klabounty@apexmanage.com.

Thursday, May 7

Book Signing with Witold Rybczynski

6 p.m.

Harold Washington Library Center Authors Room

400 S. State Street, Chicago

Witold Rybczynski, award-winning architecture critic and author of Home and A Clearing in the Distance, will discuss and sign his new book, My Two Polish Grandfathers: And Other Essays on the Imaginative Life. This delightful and enlightening book, part memoir and part family history, is Rybczynski’s personal story of the upheavals of European lives during WWII, his own resulting intellectual development and the universal languages of art, music and architecture. For information, visit http://www.chipublib.org/events/details/id/25544/

Thursday, May 7

Book Signing with Carol Fisher Saller

6 p.m.

57th Street Books

1301 East 57th Street, Chicago

Carol Fisher Saller, author of The Subversive Copy Editor: Advice from Chicago (or, How to Negotiate Good Relationships with Your Writers, Your Colleagues, and Yourself), will sign books. For more information, please contact Laura Anderson at 773-702-0890.

Thursday, May 7

Why Writers Should Blog and How to Do It

7–9 p.m.

Wilmette Public Library

1242 Wilmette Ave., Wilmette

The Midwest Writers Association is holding a meeting open to the public to hear three experts discuss blogging. Cost is $10 for non-members, $5 for members. Light refreshments will be provided. RSVP to Jan Guggenheim at guggie1@sbcglobal.net or Ada Kahn at adapkahn@aol.com.

Friday, May 8

Book Signing with Anne Durkin Keating

12:15 p.m.

Chicago Cultural Center

78 E. Washington Street, First Floor, Garland Room, Chicago


6:30 p.m.

Hyde Park Art Center

5020 S. Cornell Ave., Chicago

Anne Durkin Keating, author of Chicago Neighborhoods and Suburbs: A Historical Guide, will speak as part of the second annual Great Chicago Places and Spaces “Conversations Within Communities” reading series.

For additional information, call 312-744-3315 or visit http://www.greatchicagoplaces.us.

Tuesday, May 12

IWOC Monthly Meeting

5 p.m.

How Writers Can Work with PR Agencies

Panelists: Kim Manning, Kate Koziol, and Kim McCullough. Moderator: Jeff Steele

National-Louis University

122 South Michigan Ave., Room 5008, Chicago

Chicago networking and socializing begin at 5 p.m; programs begin promptly at 6 p.m. Admission is free to all IWOC members and $15 for nonmembers. All IWOC programs and seminars are open to nonmembers. Reservations are not necessary for programs. A buy-your-own dinner follows every meeting.

Friday, May 15

Author Event with Joel Greenberg

12:15 p.m.

Chicago Cultural Center

78 E. Washington Street, First Floor, Garland Room, Chicago


6:30 p.m.

Kayla’s Ristorante

2554 W. Diversey Ave., Chicago

Joel Greenberg, author of Of Prairie, Woods, and Water: Two Centuries of Chicago Nature Writing, will speak as part of the second annual Great Chicago Places and Spaces “Conversations Within Communities” reading series. For additional information, call 312-744-3315 or visit http://www.greatchicagoplaces.us.

Wednesday, May 20

An Evening with Andy Austin

6–8:30 p.m.

National-Louis University, Room 4012-14

122 S. Michigan Ave., Chicago

Renowned courtroom artist Andy Austin’s keen eye and quick hand have brought the public into myriad courtroom dramas. Her incisive sketches have unfolded not only the Chicago Seven trial—including the notorious restraint of Bobby Seale—but trials from that of mass murderer John Wayne Gacy in 1980 and the 2007 acquittal of Muhammad Salah of conspiracy to fund Hamas. On May 20, Austin will read from her new book, Rule 53: Capturing Hippies, Spies, Politicians, and Murderers in an American Courtroom (Lake Claremont Press)—a stunning forty-year compilation of verbal and visual sketches reflecting the intense personalities and atmosphere of the American legal system. Austin’s firsthand account of history-in-the-making from 1969 to the present is engaging, witty, and revelatory. As the late Studs Terkel declared, “the truth comes through as vividly as in her sketches.” Books will be on sale at the event, and Ms. Austin will be signing copies after her presentation. Please register for this event by May 18. To register, call 773-508-0351 or send a check payable to CWIP to P.O. Box 268107, Chicago, IL 60626.

June 6–7

Printer’s Row Book Fair

on Dearborn between Polk and Congress

The Midwest’s largest outdoor literary festival features dozens of events, scores of exhibitors, and thousands of books. Related events take place at various venues around the city. Many events are free and do not require tickets, although some do. For information, visit http://www.chicagotribune.com/entertainment/events/printersrow/.

Chicago Publishing Gigs

Acquisitions Editor, Children’s Books

Napeville-based Sourcebooks seeks an acquisitions editor for their children’s group in their New York office or Naperville office. The Acquisitions Editor candidate will be responsible for acquiring, developing, and editing children’s book projects that both enhance and expand our current publishing program. Proven ability to successfully position and title manuscripts for the marketplace a must. Candidates must demonstrate strong verbal and written communication skills, a willingness to develop strong market knowledge through research and field experience and the ability to work independently via strong goal orientation. Requirements include at least three years of relevant book publishing experience, including strong agent relationships, book development skills, negotiation skills, strong interpersonal skills, and a demonstrated record of success. Must be able to negotiate contracts, set schedules, and meet aggressive deadlines. For information, visit http://www.bookjobs.com/viewjob.php?prmJobID=1307077.

Acquisitions Editor, Medical

McGraw-Hill is looking for an acquisitions editor who will be responsible for the management of the annual book, Current Medical Diagnosis and Treatment, as well as to acquire and develop assigned titles within various markets, including internal medicine, cardiology, radiology, pharmacy, and medical sciences. The position will be located in the Burr Ridge, Illinois, or New York office. Requirements include managing the editorial relationship on Current Medical Diagnosis and Treatment; ensuring timely acquisition and publication of each annual edition; acquiring six to eight new and revised titles, as assigned, within cardiology, internal medicine, family medicine, radiology, pharmacy, and medical sciences markets; and ensuring development, management, transmittal, and publication of 10 to 20 books, as assigned, within internal medicine, family medicine, pharmacy, radiology, cardiology, and medical sciences markets. This job is posted on Monster. See also the McGraw-Hill website: http://www.mcgraw-hill.com/cgi-mcgraw/careers/recruitsoft.pl?url=uscan&lang=_en.

Copy Editor/Medical Editor

Hamilton Communications, an independent healthcare communications company located in the heart of Chicago’s Loop, seeks an editor to work closely with copywriters and art directors to ensure the quality and accuracy of communications for a wide variety of healthcare marketing and promotional materials, including print advertising, websites, event branding, and internal and external corporate publications. In addition, this individual checks facts and references, proofreads all communications, and prepares medical/regulatory submissions. Requirements include at least three to five years experience as an editor, preferably in medical/pharmaceutical advertising or healthcare/medical communications as well as knowledge of medical (AMA) style, familiarity with medical terms and concepts, and an understanding of federal regulations governing pharmaceutical advertising. For information, visit http://www.creativehotlist.com/index.asp?linkTarget=fullJob.asp&jobID=130785.

Program Manager, Publications

The American Massage Therapy Association, based in Evanston, seeks a Program Manager for their Publications department to oversee the creation and production of AMTA’s quarterly magazine Massage Therapy Journal (MTJ); ensure that quality control standards are met and that each issue is published on time and on budget; see that editorial content supports the strategic direction and messages of AMTA and provides value to members; and manage editorial process, volunteer reviewers, production personnel, and others involved in producing issues of the magazine. Requirements include three to five years managing volunteers and freelance writers for an association magazine with budget responsibility; experience with organizations that have well-developed performance measures preferred; and experience in editorial program planning effectively developing and managing objectives and measures, program activities, and marketing communications plans and budget, including editorial calendars. For information, visit http://careers.associationforum.org/jobdetail.cfm?job=3111154.

Publications Manager

The Society of Actuaries, based in Schaumburg, seeks a Publications Manager to Publications Manager ensure the timely, cost effective, and high-quality production and delivery of news, knowledge and information to members, candidates and other key stakeholders through a variety of print and electronic vehicles. This position will manage daily operations for the publication team whose key outputs include a bi-monthly four-color magazine, a peer reviewed journal, a quarterly practitioners journal, special interest newsletters, meeting monographs, an organizational annual report and textbook publication. Requirements include bachelor’s degree in Journalism, Communications, English, or a related discipline (master’s degree preferred in appropriate discipline) and a minimum of five years experience in management a publications/publishing program and professional team including direct experience with magazines, newsletters, journals, printed books, or electronic/web-based publishing formats in a business, public, or not-for-profit sector. For information, visit http://careers.associationforum.org/jobdetail.cfm?job=3105445.

Science Editor, K–8

Quarasan, Inc. in Chicago seeks a science editor to participate in all aspects of the textbook/educational product development process. You will develop and maintain project guidelines, write original manuscript, evaluate and copyedit manuscript, and coordinate the work of in-house and freelance editors and writers. Requirements include Bachelor’s or Master’s degree in science, science education or science journalism; expertise in all science content areas; and minimum 3 years of publishing experience, preferably in educational publishing; science teaching experience in K-8 preferred. For information, visit http://www.bookjobs.com/viewjob.php?prmJobID=1307618.

Senior Science Editor, 9–12

Chicago-based Quarasan, Inc., seeks a senior science editor who will be responsible for generating ideas, developing models, writing, and editing across multiple projects in a deadline-driven team environment. Managing small projects, the Senior Editor works independently, while collaborating with editorial content managers and clients to develop prototypes and finished products. This position is an exciting and rewarding job which requires attention to detail and quality control at all stages of textbook development. Requirements include Bachelor’s or Master’s degree in science, science education or science journalism; expertise in earth sciences, chemistry, astronomy and physics; and minimum five years of publishing experience, preferably in educational publishing; science teaching experience at the middle/high school level preferred. For information, visit http://www.bookjobs.com/viewjob.php?prmJobID=1307617.


Human Resources Development Institute, Inc. (HRDI), based in Chicago, seeks a writer/editor to develop and refine HRDI’s communications and publications. The Writer/Editor will report to the Chief Executive Officer and will communicate information regarding technical areas in a non-technical way by researching complex technical data to write and edit documents, such as manuals and procedure reports; proofread documents, as necessary; and enter, compile, organize, and summarize complex data to support the CEO. Requirements include bachelor’s degree in communications, journalism, technical writing, or related field preferred; two or more years of technical writing experience; and experience working with desktop publishing, word processing, and online documentation software. This job is posted on CareerBuilder: http://www.careerbuilder.com/JobSeeker/Jobs/JobDetails.aspx?IPath=QHKCV&ff=21&APath=

CPN Profile

Brad Hentz is Manager of Manufacturing and Product Delivery at Naperville-based Sourcebooks, where he has worked for the past decade or so. Brad also worked as a store manager with Waldenbooks (part of the Borders group) and he’s an avid reader, so he’s seen several sides of publishing: customer, bookseller, and publisher. Brad shares his insight and a unique view of publishing in this brief interview:

How long have you been in publishing?

I’ve been around books for nearly 14 years now. The first 3 were in book retail as a Store Manager for Waldenbooks. Since Waldenbooks, I’ve spent the last 10 ½ years in publishing at Sourcebooks, Inc. in Naperville.

What was your first publishing job, and was it everything you thought or hoped it would be?

I’ve spent my entire publishing career with Sourcebooks. When I started at Sourcebooks, I came on as the Customer Service Manager. At this time, Sourcebooks was just 11 years old and on the cusp of releasing its groundbreaking (and, unbeknownst to us at the time, NYT bestselling) title “We Interrupt This Broadcast.” Over two years ago, I was asked to move to the manufacturing side of the business. Today, I now oversee both the Manufacturing and C.S. departments.

In regard to whether it was everything I thought and hoped it to be, my answer is a resounding “yes.” Having worked for Waldenbooks prior to Sourcebooks, I had already found my love for books and discussing them with fellow readers. What Sourcebooks afforded me was an escape from the retail environment and hours. The transition itself was easy as customer service between the bookseller and end user has many similarities to that of a publisher and its customers. The specifics may be different, but many of the situations are comparable.

You’ve worked in bookstores and in trade publishing. How have these experiences helped you in your career?

They’ve helped in more ways than I could possibly recount here. With bookstore experience, you learn the very basic terminology needed for publishing. I often laughed at myself when I’d train new people and use terms like ISBN, trade paperback, mass market paperback, or deckled pages. These are terms I took for granted that non-bookstore or non-publishing people don’t automatically know without explanation!

On a deeper level, however, bookstore experience was valuable to me as it helped familiarize me with the industry (regional and national wholesalers, publishers, competitive retailers, BISACs or book categories, authors, paid placement/co-op money, etc.). Seeing what works and doesn’t work in the marketplace, from a content, design, and promotion perspective, is seen first hand as a bookseller and is tremendously valuable first hand knowledge in any editorial, manufacturing, prod/design, sales, or marketing function.

Lastly, bookstore experience really showed me the passion that customers, publishing industry, and bookselling community all share for books. It’s true that those who work for publishers and bookstores spend their lives in the business. It’s true that readers are more intelligent and vocal about their likes and dislikes in literature. To a passionate reader, meeting their favorite author is every bit the same, emotionally, as a fanatic meeting their favorite athlete, rock star, or movie star.

How do you think publishing has changed in the past five years? 10 years?

Like Ann Poole mentioned in a previous CPN profile, technology is unquestionably one of the largest change in publishing. These days, more files are transmitted between parties via FTP sites and emails. Files can be pre-flighted almost instantaneously and preliminary feedback can be provided within minutes of uploading files to printers’ FTP sites. With the correct technology, proofing can be done entirely through color-calibrated monitors with no physical Epson or digital dylux proofs being generated. Corrections can be made on screen and can be proofed by multiple users. The technology can get rather pricey, but printers seem to be pushing this agenda at publishers’ request due to the costs to generate and ship physical proofs.

Ebook technology seems to be picking up speed and finally looks like it is here to stay. Personally, I’m so impressed by the progress of ebooks that I wonder if or how ebook technology will affect print-on-demand or short run digital printing.

Perhaps of equal significance are the changes in the bookselling marketplace. Whereas years ago, publishers thought primarily about how books will work on a bookstore shelf, now they must think about online retailers as well as “super store” chains like Target, Wal-Mart, Sam’s Club, BJ’s, Costco and the like. Even at the retail bookstore level, indies are disappearing and the chains are changing their strategy by carrying less SKUs/ISBNs. What this means for publishing is that publishers must look even more thoroughly at content and packaging because the competition for space/visibility is more fierce than ever. Both content and packaging must be consistently “top tier.” Designers, editors, and print buyers are charged with creating eye-catching, innovative, and cost efficient packaging in order to get “sell in” from stores, point of purchase sales, and be able to be profitable with the deep discounts required by such retailers as mentioned above.

What do you think is unique about Chicago-area publishing?

From where I sit, what makes Chicago-are publishing unique is that we aren’t bound to the trends and attitudes of the East and West coast publishers. Publishing is very much “follow the leader,” but being in the Mid-West we are “insulated” from this and can more easily be innovative. We don’t spend our time trying to keep up with our coastal competitors, but rather can focus our own goals and strategies. Put another way, from my experience, Chicago-area publishing is removed or more isolated from the “the sky is falling” attitude that seems to permeate East coast publishing. Being away from the negativism is unique in and of itself.

What advice would you give to someone looking to start out or advance in Chicago-area publishing?

This is more a statement about publishing than Chicago-area publishing, but anyone entering publishing needs to understand that the publishing landscape is dramatically changing despite the industry’s best efforts to keep it the same. While “paper and board” never entirely go away, there are now ebooks, Iphone apps, online website and subscription services, etc. In short, people staring out in publishing need to understand that to survive, they need to think outside of a physical book. Publishing is becoming more and more about content delivery and how to reach readers and make profits beyond the traditional book format. Those who can envision this future have a leg up on those whose sole perspective is grounded in paper, printing, and binding.

Speaking specifically to Chicago-area publishing, one must know that competition for jobs is tough. A large majority of publishing jobs are on the coasts and if one isn’t interested in relocating to either coast, the choices in publishing are limited. Also, with demand for publishing jobs so high and supply of these jobs low, the competition for jobs is stiff. College graduates are competing for non-paying internships just to get their foot in the door! And once anyone gets into a publishing house, they quickly realize that this is a job that is done largely for the love of literature, not for pay.

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