The Casual Optimist

Books, Design and Culture

July 1, 2016
by Dan
0 comments

Elda Rotor: The Woman Who Runs Penguin Classics

CNN Philippines interviewsd Elda Rotor, vice president and publisher of Penguin Classics at the Penguin Random House in New York: The main joy is bringing an audience to a work that would otherwise lead a quiet life, not having the … Continue reading

June 2, 2016
by Dan
0 comments

Monocle on Books in Translation

On the latest Monocle 24 Culture show, host Robert Bound discusses the recent rise in translated fiction with Anne Meadows, commissioning editor at Portobello and Granta, and Lisette Verhagen, foreign-rights agent at David Godwin Associates, while Andrew Mueller talks to Deborah Smith, Man Booker International Prize-winning … Continue reading

April 29, 2016
by Dan
0 comments

A Publishing House of Her Own

Joanna Scutts reviews The Lady with the Borzoi, Laura Claridge’s new biography of Blanche Knopf, for the New Republic: When the house of Knopf launched in 1915, publishing was a gentleman’s pursuit—amateur, clubbish, WASP, and above all, male. Blanche and … Continue reading

February 27, 2016
by Dan
0 comments

From Thomas Mann to Amazon — The Art of Literary Publishing in New York

The Millions has a long, but very interesting (and, at times, surprisingly blunt) essay by veteran Doubleday editor Gerald Howard on editing and literary publishing in New York: At the simplest, most basic level, I’ve been reading for a living … Continue reading

February 17, 2016
by Dan
0 comments

New Directions Staying Small

Maria Bustillos visits New Directions and talks to publisher and president Barbara Epler about the business for The New Yorker: Today’s visitor to New Directions’ elegantly shabby offices, in Chelsea, may stand on the nineteenth-floor balcony beside Epler, who is in … Continue reading

February 3, 2016
by Dan
0 comments

Jeff Shotts: Artful and Enduring Experiences

At Literary Hub,  Jeff Shotts discusses his work an editor at Minneapolis-based publisher Graywolf Press with Kerri Arsenault: At Graywolf, we choose what we choose because these books deal with uncomfortable issues. Sometimes we need comfort, but what comforts us as readers, when so … Continue reading

February 2, 2016
by Dan
0 comments

Chris Jackson: Building a Literary Movement

New York Times Vinson Cunningham profiles Chris Jackson, executive editor at Spiegel & Grau and editor of award-winning author Ta-Nehisi Coates: Jackson’s role… is to perform nothing less than a kind of magic. He stands between the largely white culture-making machinery and artists … Continue reading

September 1, 2015
by Dan
2 Comments

Graywolf Press: Saying Yes When Others Say No

Writing at NY Magazine’s Vulture, Boris Kachka, whose book Hothouse on Farrar, Straus & Giroux was published in paperback last year, profiles nonprofit literary publisher Graywolf Press: Publishing just over 30 books a year, Graywolf has had authors win four NBCC awards, a National … Continue reading

August 20, 2015
by Dan
0 comments

Europa Editions’ Small Objects of Desire

The New York Times T Magazine profiles Italian small press Europa Editions: Even if you haven’t heard of Europa Editions, you’ve probably heard of some of its hits. There’s Muriel Barbery’s “The Elegance of the Hedgehog” (more than a million copies … Continue reading

August 10, 2015
by Dan
0 comments

NYRB: Publishing Serious Literary Books

Larry Rohter profiles the New York Review Books, the publishing offshoot of the literary magazine The New York Review of Books, for the New York Times: “From the beginning, it was our intention to be resolutely eclectic, and build our … Continue reading

March 11, 2014
by Dan
0 comments

Stephen Page: Past, Present and Future

The Bookseller has posted an edited transcript of a recent speech by Stephen Page, chief executive of Faber & Faber, at the IPG and Publishing Scotland conferences: One joy of digital is that it promotes thinking about all incarnations of … Continue reading

October 11, 2013
by Dan
0 comments

New Republic: Who Said the Book Industry is Dying?

The latest issue of the New Republic looks at the book publishing industry and it includes an article by Evan Hughes on the relative health of the book business: At the individual level, everyone in the trade—whether executive, editor, agent, author, or … Continue reading

%d bloggers like this: