Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Same Old Stuff, Different Day

Yet another publishing layoff announcement, this time at Macmillan.

An interesting thing to note is CEO John Sargent's admission that the company's presence at Book Expo next year will be greatly reduced. "I think it makes more sense to funnel our marketing dollars elsewhere," he said.

I can pretty much guarantee that the majority of the other publishers out there are saying the same thing. They were already saying it last spring before things really got bad. The only thing that might save it this year is the fact that the show will be in New York, so many people will be able to attend without incurring travel costs (although I admit that it was thoroughly amusing to see all those black-wearing Manhattanites in L.A. this year, framed uneasily by palm trees and squinting at the excess of natural light).

Publishing blogger Fran Toolan has some predictions for publishing in 2009. I agree with him: It's going to be an interesting year.

All in all, not an auspicious way to celebrate Jane Austen's 233rd birthday, but there it is.

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