Have you ever written a book review?

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Publishing Layoffs Hit Random House and Simon & Schuster

"Yes, Virginia, book publishing is NOT recession proof," said Patricia Schroeder, president and chief executive officer of the Association of American Publishers. "It's sad day." Read the entire article here.

No, the important issue is not that Pat Schroeder managed to string together words that make sense for the first time since childhood. (I will never forget reading a review of her autobiography that included this description: "Now I know what history looks like through the eyes of an idiot." But I digress.

The elephant in the room is about quality, flexibility, and treating people right. You can run a big company for a long time, and even find and put out a mega bestseller like Dan Brown's The Da Vinci Code, and still lose your job.


Well, let's use a phrase my grandfather often muttered when he took me somewhere for lunch or dinner and was disgusted by the service, the setting, or the meal. "Teddy," he would say, shaking his head slowly as he withdrew his unlit cigar from his mouth, turned it over, and waved it around to make his point. "The people who are running this business today are not the people who built the business yesterday."

Think about it.



Anonymous said...

"The people who are running this business today are not the people who built the business yesterday."

Therein lies the rub: Today's and TOMORROW'S audiences are not the people who grew up reading.

It's no longer a question of 'good writing,' but can one MAKE people read?

A trillion pages on the net for free, so why should anyone PAY to read a book?

But let us not give up on the book just yet. Instead envision the books of tomorrow.

Or alas, there won't be any.

Phil LeDuc said...

Ah, Ted -

I love your way with words concerning Pat Schroeder. Our world views are, I suspect, very similar.

I think I'm going to have to buy a bunch of SB-published books for Christmas presents this year!

A very merry Christmas and a happy New Year to you and yours.

TPS said...

Hi Phil

Thanks for stopping by. I can tell you my world view easily:

Leave me alone. Get out of my way, and my family will rise or fall on our own merits. I will help those I want to help, and not help those I think undeserving with the money I earn through the sweat of my own labor.

That about sums it up.

By the way, we have discovered about 40 brand new first edition copies of Steve Newton's outstanding Lost for the Cause: The Confederate Army in 1864 (Savas Publishing 1999). Order any of our books online and use the coupon code NEWTON in the little box, and we will ship you a copy FREE with your order. No extra postage involved.

Merry Christmas to you.