Director’s Desk
A 10-Step Program for Becoming a Publisher

January 2004
by Jan Nathan, Executive Director, PMA

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Publishing is more confusing today than it was 15 years ago for many people entering our community. In part, this is because of all the technological changes that make entry into the world of publishing seem easier and easier.

Every day at the PMA office, we find ourselves explaining to people who are new to the industry that even though they have a product that looks and feels and sometimes even reads like a book, they are not really ready to enter this world as publishers. In fact, in many cases these people don’t own their books’ ISBNs, which tell booksellers who the publisher is. Yet they still think they can assume the publisher’s role.

Acting on these many conversations, the PMA board has begun to develop a statement to help define the role of the publisher. Board member Paul Coates and his committee started to work on this project right after the first meeting of the 2003/04 PMA board. Pat Bell, PMA’s affiliate chairperson and a member of Paul’s committee, developed most of what appears below.

While this is still a work in progress, with board members editing and putting the finishing touches on it, I thought I’d share it with you as well, for your input. If you have any suggestions, please send them to me at

The Role of a Book Publisher: Draft Copy

As publishers, we are the bearers and the repositories of information. We have responsibilities to our investors, our authors, our suppliers, our customers,…IBPA Members – Click here to view the full article (login required).

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