Event Recaps

Recap of November 2019 Event: Creative Workflow Solutions

Our November luncheon featured four presenters, each one highlighting a different tool that has helped their company work more efficiently. Amy Fitzgerald (editorial director for Carolrhoda Books at Lerner Publishing Group) shared her insights on using Word’s style templates to save time on production. David Farr (principal of graphic design and art direction at ImageSmythe) presented instructions for using InDesign’s new features to easily incorporate marked-up PDF changes. Kat Sanborn (senior publicist at Llewellyn Worldwide) gave the audience a glimpse into the many project management uses for Airtable. And finally, Layne Johnson (senior project manager for 1517 Media) shared how Pressbooks has allowed her company to move certain books into layout more efficiently while channeling more intense graphic design resources to other areas of their publishing program. All four presenters shared real-world success stories, and an audience Q&A allowed attendees the chance to explore how these tools might be of use in their own workflows.

An audio recording from this event is available to members in Member Resources. Are you a member and don’t have the password to access the recordings? Please contact information@publishersroundtable.org.

Recap of January 2020 Event: Best Practices for Working with Freelancers

We kicked off 2020 with a panel discussion on building healthy relationships between publishers and freelancers. Our panel consisted of two in-house representatives: Laura Westland, managing editor of the University of MN Press, and James Kegley, the art director for 1517 Media’s trade books; and two freelancers: Kim Winscher, a graphic designer, and Madeleine Vasaly, a copyeditor, developmental editor, and proofreader.

They discussed their current practices and the tools they use and recommend for creating harmonious, productive relationships as well as practices to avoid.

An audio recording from this event is available to members in Member Resources. Are you a member and don’t have the password to access the recordings? Please contact information@publishersroundtable.org.

Recap of September 2019 Event: Creating the Right Front Cover: What Does It Take?

MBPR’s September luncheon featured an in-house team from Free Spirit Publishing, who discussed the ins and outs of a healthy and collaborative front cover design process.

Kyra Ostendorf (publisher), Gino Perfetti (creative director), and Amanda Shofner (publicist) shared stories and examples of book cover development from concepting to completed designs, walking us through what worked and what didn’t — and why.

An audio recording from this event are available to members in Member Resources. Are you a member and don’t have the password to access the recordings? Please contact information@publishersroundtable.org.

Recap of May 2019 Event: Beyond print and e-books: Leveraging content

Our May luncheon, Beyond Print and eBooks, featured presentations on three local content-sharing platforms.

Roger Cummings of Juxtaposition Arts (JXTA) discussed the design process his team went through in creating Storymobile, a moveable space that invites people to share, display, and preserve the stories that matter to them. Mondo Davison, most notably known as “The Black Tech Guy,” spoke about his startup Shortiez, a digital library of original short stories written and illustrated by POC, increasing diversity and representation in K-8 classrooms. And Lizzie Ehrenhalt, an editor and public historian, told us about the challenges of creating and editing content for MNopedia, a digital encyclopedia of Minnesota history.

An audio recording from this event is available to members in Member Resources. Are you a member and don’t have the password to access the recordings? Please contact information@publishersroundtable.org.

Recap of March 2019 Event: “Diverse Representations in Children’s Literature”

Our March luncheon featured keynote speaker Namrata Tripathi, Vice President and Publisher of Penguin’s Kokila (pronounced KO-ki-la) imprint.

Throughout her lively presentation, Namrata took us through her journey to create a publishing space that builds an inclusive community, while allowing storytellers to explore their full range of experiences — affecting the way children and young adults see the world and their place in it. Namrata discussed the questions she was asked as she started the imprint, her own experiences in publishing, and how the culture of publishing itself can be a barrier to inclusivity, as well as what she hopes to do to help change that.

An audio recording from this event is available to members in Member Resources. Are you a member and don’t have the password to access the recordings? Please contact information@publishersroundtable.org.

Recap of January 2019 Event: Publicity Via “Influencers”

Our January luncheon, Publicity Via “Influencers”: Rethinking the Ways You Connect Readers to Content, featured a lively discussion about influencers and how they might help spread the word about your books.

Panelists Katharine Bolin (founder and owner of Sweet Reach Media), Ali Kirby (director of community growth and business development for Collective Bias), and Alex Steinman (co-founder of The Coven) shared their insights, tips, and best practices for augmenting traditional publicity and marketing campaigns with these strategic partnerships.

An audio recording from this event is available to members in Member Resources. Are you a member and don’t have the password to access the recordings? Please contact information@publishersroundtable.org.

Recap of May Event: Diversity in Publishing

Hannah Ehrlich, director of marketing and publicity at multicultural children’s book publisher Lee & Low Books, discussed the state of diversity in publishing.

Using a recent study of children’s literature, she found that while the representation of diverse characters was improving, there is still a great deal of work to do in promoting equity among authors. For example, Black, Latinx and Native authors combined wrote only 7% of the new children’s books published in 2017. Hannah then discussed the results of Lee & Low’s 2015 Diversity Baseline Study, which revealed that representation of several marginalized populations is also lacking behind the scenes at publishing companies. Editorial departments are overwhelmingly white, female, straight, and non-disabled. Hannah highlighted useful institutions and initiatives that are helping to bring forward underrepresented authors and recruit and retain diverse publishing professionals. She concluded by suggesting thought-exercises and readings to challenge our perceptions and unintentional sources of bias.

An audio recording from this event is available to members in Member Resources.

Recap of March Event: Beyond Bookstores

At the March MBPR luncheon, Nichole Schiele, Manager of Specialty Market Sales for The Quarto Group, Molly Mortensen, Sales Representative from Anne McGilvray & Company, and Audrey Matson, Owner of Egg|Plant Urban Farm Supply in St. Paul, MN shared best practices and successful ways to launch unique books in non-traditional retail environments.

We began the luncheon with Nichole, who discussed the chain of specialty sales at The Quarto Group, as well as tips for reaching out to corporations and specialty stores. Molly then discussed the role of outside sales reps and their relationships with both publishers and retailers. Lastly, Audrey emphasized the important role that books play in her store and how they have presented as growth opportunities. See below for a link to the audio recording. Thanks to everyone for a great event!

An audio recording from this event is available to members in Member Resources.

Recap of January Event: Marketing Case Studies

In today’s fast-paced and highly saturated publishing environment, a book’s success is often dependent on a creative and ambitious marketing endeavor.

The first MBPR luncheon of 2018 featured Panelists Vanessa Wright, Steve Roth, and Dan Verdick exploring the goals and strategies driving their campaigns, challenges faced, and how each campaign helped effectively bring its book to the people who matter most—readers.

An audio recording from this event is available to members in Member Resources.

Recap of November Event: The Chicago Manual of Style, 17th Edition

At the November 2017 luncheon, Carol Fisher Saller, renowned author and long-time editor of The Chicago Manual of Style’s online Q&A, gave a keynote presentation introducing the seventeenth edition of The Chicago Manual of Style.

Saller began by taking the audience through the previous sixteen editions of The Chicago Manual of Style’s and discussing how and when it received its now-familiar traits, such as its orange and blue color scheme. Saller then focused her address on each new change to the seventeenth edition, going chapter by chapter to explain the rationale behind each adjustment. She ended her presentation with helpful information about the launch of the online edition and directions for purchasing the new Manual. After concluding, Saller spent time with MBPR and PEN members.

An audio recording from this event is available to members in Member Resources.