From The Trenches

June 1999
by Hugo N. Gerstl, Millennium/Bon Vivant

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As I write this article, my wife Lorraine and I are about to depart for Bucharest, Romania. Is it a place we would have chosen to go on holiday? Perhaps, perhaps not, but we’re going nonetheless. Why? Because we’ve sold translation rights to Nemira, a respected Romanian publishing house, and we’re going there to sign books and promote Nemira’s efforts. Over a period of three nights, we’ll meet with people from the Israeli Embassy, the Jewish-Romanian Trade Association, and others from every walk of life. And we’ll love it-even though, in other circumstances, we might not love it.Welcome to the world of the small publisher. We’re not Bertelsmann and we’re not Simon & Schuster. Heck, we’re not even a middle-sized house yet. But what we don’t have in size or money, we certainly make up for in heart and spirit. We’re building partnerships for the future. That’s why we’re making the trip to Romania, the trip to Croatia, the trip to Israel, and trips to places which might seem out of the way. The big boys on the block regularly sell to Germany, France, Japan, England, and Spain. Ours is a smaller market, one where you sell to small countries and third world countries, one where you get $500 or $1,000 advance on a book rather than megathousands, one where you do what you have to do to help out your foreign partner-on a very personal level.Am I crazy or what? I left a very successful, 32-year practice as a trial lawyer (where I was making a comfortable six-figure income each year) to…IBPA Members – Click here to view the full article (login required).

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