Publishing Influentials/Saving Souvenir/Loss of Independents/Pamuk on Freedom/More on Flaubert

May 9, 2006

The Influentials, According to New York Magazine
New York magazine has come out again with its list of influential individuals in a variety of fields, including publishing. They are as follows:

Nicole Aragi, the agent for Aragi, Inc., “turns talents young writers into literary stars…[discovering] only one author or two a year.”
Sessalee Hensley, the fiction buyer for Barns & Noble, “can banish a new title to the bottom shelf, showcase it in the window, or, like The Lovely Bones or The Historian,promote it through the chain's sales-boosting Discover Great New Writers program.”
Steve Rubin, publisher of Doubleday/Broadway, is called “the expansionist publisher.”
Steve Ross, publisher of Crown Forum, “established Crown as the leading player in the conservative-book boomlet.”
Jane Friedman, CEO of HarperCollins, is “busy digitizing her company's 25,000 titles.”
Malcolm Gladwell, author of The Tipping Point and Blink, has “changed the way people think about the obvious.”
Jonathan Lethem, author of Motherless Brooklyn and Fortress of Solitude, “roughed up the careful polish of MFA grads with the exuberance of the autodidact.”

The Saving of Souvenir
Many independent book publishers are going bust or being bought out by mega-corprations. The Britisher publisher Souvenir has remained solvent and independent. Here's how.

Britain Follows U.S., Unfortunately
“At Least 40 independent bookshops have gone out of business so far this year, renewing fears that cut-price deals in supermarkets and on the Internet will destroy the independent sector,” reports David Smith for The Observer.

Pamuk's Freedom to Write Lecture
The New York Review of Books
brilliantly has published Orhan Pamuk's inaugural PEN Arthur Miller Freedom to Write Memorial Lecture. He starts: “In March 1985 Arthur Miller and Harold Pinter made a trip together to Istanbul.At the time, they were perhaps the two most important names in world theater, but unfortunately, it was not a play or a literary event that brought them to Istanbul, but the ruthless limits being set on freedom of expression in Turkey.”

More on Flaubert
In his review of Flaubert: A Biography and Bouvard and Pecuchet, Julian Barnes in his NYRB essay “Falubert, C'est Moi” gives great insight into one of the world's greatest writers.

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