Media and Publishing

My love of literature and the performing arts and their ability to influence and transform people and society stem from early childhood exposure to books, film, live theater, dance, and classical music. After taking my first creative writing workshop during my freshman year at Mount Holyoke College, I began writing fiction and creative nonfiction in earnest, earning an MFA in Fiction Writing at the University of Washington, where I studied under National Book Award Winner Charles Johnson. Since that time, I've published more than 30 short stories, essays, and an award-winning memoir. This lifelong devotion to literature and the arts has prompted me to work with a variety of nonprofit organizations, including The Authors Guild, for which I serve as a paid communications consultant, writing about the media and publishing industry.

The Benefits (and Limits) of Publishing with a University Press

If the "university press" moniker conjures the image of a stack of Ph.D. dissertations, the diversity of titles and well-known authors published under university press imprints should easily erase it: The Toni Morrison Book Club (University of Wisconsin Press, 2020); A Confederacy of Dunces (Louisiana State University Press, 1980); former U.S. Poet Laureate Billy Collins' The Apple That Astonished Paris (University of Arkansas Press, 1988); and Karla FC Holloway's A Death in Harlem (Northwestern University Press, 2019), the first volume in a proposed #HarlemBooks fiction series. The list runs on, offering a rich mix of history, fiction, poetry, science, mystery, and humor--some books you may have read long ago, others you've never heard of--selected by members of the Association of University Presses (AUPresses), and not a dissertation or monograph in sight.

Authors Guild Foundation Signs Deal with Houghton Mifflin Harcourt to Publish COVID-Era Collaborative Novel Fourteen Days

Edited by Margaret Atwood, the novel includes contributions by some of today’s most renowned writers. New York (March 18, 2021): The Authors Guild Foundation announced a deal with Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Books & Media to publish Fourteen Days: An Unauthorized Gathering, a unique collaborative novel edited by Margaret Atwood and with original contributions from dozens of major figures from across the literary spectrum. The book will be published through HMH’s Sugar23 Books imprint. All proceed

Proposed “Journalism Competition And Preservation Act” Deserves Our Support

A decade ago, print, digital, television, and radio news outlets employed approximately 114,000 journalists. That number fell below 86,000 last year, a drop of more than 25%, according to the nonpartisan Pew Center for Research. Newspaper advertising revenues in 2018, which combined with circulation revenues determine newspapers’ ability to make a profit, fell 13% in just 12 months to $14.3 billion.

A Million Little Lawsuits?

Will the legal battles sparked by the fabrications in James Frey's A Million Little Pieces—at least 16 lawsuits have been filed against the author and his publisher, Doubleday—have a chilling effect on the publication of memoirs and other nonfiction? Other publishers are understandably concerned about finding themselves in court answering such complaints. But they should keep in mind that, with some exceptions, legal precedent is on their side.

What Scarlett O'Hara Teaches Us About Authenticity

Most executives I speak to believe their companies could do a better job communicating with their customers, shareholders, talent or just with each other. All too often, however, C-suite professionals respond to corporate communications the same way that Scarlett O’Hara did whenever her actions conflicted with her beliefs—be it the invading Union Army, killing an army deserter and would-be rapist, or raising the money to pay for the taxes on Tara—declaring,“I can’t think about that now.
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