Spotlight: IBPA Member Achievements

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July 2014
by Linda Carlson

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Under the Sea for Good

shark_whispererScarletta Press author Ellen Prager spent four minutes on the Today show in May discussing her YA novel, The Shark Whisperer. To make her appearance dramatic, she used tanks lent by an aquarium and set up on the Today show plaza so she could show examples of the sea creatures her hero encounters.

Moving into Mandarin

ORX Inc. has sold Mandarin Chinese rights to Doer’s Dilemma: Why Achievers Suffer and What to Do About It, published in the United States last fall, to Sun Yat-Sen University Press, Guangzhou, which will issue it in Mandarin as Doers: The Vital Few Who Get Things Done.

Driving Direct Dales

That TreeNational television publicity sells more books than coverage in print newspapers, and coverage in print newspapers sells more books than online publicity says Warren Winter of Press Syndication Group, despite the fact that some online publicity for That Tree led to a flood of Website visitors. Subtitled An iPhone Photo Journal Documenting a Year in the Life of a Lonely Bur Oak and written by Mark Hirsch, the book came out in the fall of 2013.

Initial sales averaged 1,000 per month, 85 percent of them at $39.95 from the PSG Website, probably due to Hirsch’s daily posts on Facebook during book production as well as to the media publicity. The publicity most effective in driving visitors to Facebook (an increase of 24,000 followers in two days) and in generating sales was a CBS News Sun- day Morning segment in June 2013. Winter also compared responses from regional PBS publicity to newspaper and online publicity.

Legs Up on Library Sales

Lifting my VoiceSeveral Chicago Review Press titles we recently reviewed in Library Journal including Here Comes Everybody: The Story of the Pogues by James Fearnley; Lifting My Voice: A Memoir by Barbara Hendricks; Gentlemen Bootleggers: The True Story of Templeton Rye, Prohibition, and a Small Town in Cahoots by Bryce T. Bauer; Oddball Michigan: A Guide to 450 Really Strange Places by Jerome Pohlen; and Wonder Woman Unbound: The Curious History of the World’s Most Famous Heroine by Tim Hanley.

LJ also recently reviewed a Poisoned Pen Press title by Kerry Greenwood, Murder and Mendelssohn: A Phryne Fisher Mystery; and two Sourcebooks titles, Jennifer Coburn’s We’ll Always Have Paris: A Mother/Daughter Adventure, and Jennifer Buhl’s Shooting Stars: My Unexpected Life Photographing Hollywood’s Most Famous.

Trade Press Publicity

Chelsea Green has been highlighted in two spring issues of Publishers Weekly. The “Green publishing” feature cited Chelsea Green’s “eco-audits” and its commitment to using FSC-certified paper and reducing returns by selling nonreturnable with deep discounts. In another issue, a “Spotlight on New England Publishers” story said Chelsea Green was “leading the way” for the region’s fast-growing indie publishers.

Overfished Ocean StrategyPW’s “green publishing” feature also credited Fulcrum Publishing for using FSC-certified paper, printing locally, doing more digital proofing and uploads, and using Edelweiss for digital ARCs. A sidebar, “BookswithGreenThemes,” included Overfished Ocean Strategy by Nadya Zhexembayeva from Berrett-Koehler, and four Chelsea Green titles — Hemp Bound; Grass, Soil, Hope; The New Net Zero; and Extracted.

A PW true crime feature, “Solving the unsolved,” mentioned Square One Publishers’ The Strange Case of Dr. Doyle by Daniel Friedman and Eugene Friedman.

Among the title that recently received starred reviews in PW were Sourcebooks Casablanca’s The Longest Night by Kara Bradan, described as a “touching and stupendously fresh debut,” and In Your Corner by Sarah Castille, a romance of boxers that the reviewer says “doesn’t pull any punches.”


About the Spotlight: Spotlight is compiled by Linda Carlson, who welcomes IBPA members’ news of notable special sales and licensing deals, significant recent media coups, movie and television options, and other achievements at linda@ibpa-online.org.

Please report on how you accomplished something as well as on what you accomplished so others can benefit from your experience as they applaud your achievements.

Note: We must have URLs for accessing any media coverage you’d like us to mention.

Please submit your news for Spotlight in the text of your email (no attachments) and remember to include:

  • your name and title
  • the name of your publishing company as it appears in the IBPA membership directory
  • your email address
  • URLs for the archived editions of any media stories you’re telling us about

Since information for this column is needed about eight weeks in advance of an issue’s publication date, news you submit by July 10 can be considered for the September 2014 and later issues. News that is time-sensitive should be directed to molly@ibpa-online.org for consideration for the IBPA e-newsletter, Independent Publishing Now.

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