The Idea Logical Company Blog
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A personal thought on the passing of publishing legend Tom McCormack

The passing of publishing giant Tom McCormack makes me recall the interaction he had with my father, Leonard Shatzkin, from the very beginning of Tom’s publishing career. The bios say he was hired as an editor at Anchor Books, Doubleday’s pioneering trade paperback imprint, in 1959, that being McCormack’s first job in publishing. The Anchor line had...

Thu Jun 20, 2024 23:36
Checking facts with players who are still in the game

It is four years since Covid and eight years since I have had staff helping me serve consulting clients. My insight into the commercial world of book publishing is no longer informed by daily contact with people making their living in it. In fact, a big chunk of my “professional” activity these days is helping authors decide how to bring their book...

Wed May 8, 2024 22:19
Big disruption hit book publishing before AI showed up

Publishers Weekly recently hosted a stimulating and smart online session about AI and publishing, thanks to the organizing and moderating skills of Peter Brantley and Thad McIlroy. The day began with a presentation by former PRH CEO Markus Dohle and ended with one by thought leader Ethan Mollick of the Wharton School, which framed the day perfectly....

Thu Oct 5, 2023 00:03
Bindery Books: A Way to Restructure the Book Publishing Model

The case has been made here repeatedly over years that the business and operating model of book publishing as it has been throughout my 50+-year career is irretrievably broken. And it is increasingly obvious that this is the case across all “content” businesses — newspapers, magazines, movies, TV, and radio — and for very much the same reasons. The...

Thu Aug 3, 2023 00:36
The problem with bookstores is the problem for bookstores

Three decades ago, if you wanted a trade book, you went to a bookstore or a bigger merchant like Wal-mart or a department store with a book “section”. It was actually hard to get a book any other way. That really changed starting with Amazon in 1995 and has continued to splinter since with a large number of online retailers making books available that...

Tue Jun 6, 2023 02:12
Running a big publishing house is not as much fun as it used to be

The idea that general trade publishing and general trade publishing houses were going to have to change or die was first floated here in a post in 2007 and then expanded upon in a post called “The End of the General Trade Publishing Concept” in 2019. The announcement this week that Madeline McIntosh, a very good person and a very competent publishing...

Tue Feb 7, 2023 00:03

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