YPG June BBL: Books from Beyond: Literary Estates and Posthumous Publishing

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3515201536_38383c6123_z-300x200Authors and publishers often develop close relationships as they work together to create, edit, promote, and sell a book. But how does that  dynamic change when the author is, in fact, dead?

In this BBL, we’ll talk about how publishers maintain the literary legacies of authors who are no longer living. You’ll hear from industry professionals who manage backlist titles and deal with the literary estates of classic authors, as well as those who have published more recently-deceased writers. We’ll discuss the contract process, editorial challenges, approaches to publicity and marketing, and more. Come to our June BBL at the AAP Headquarters at 71 Fifth Ave., 2nd Floor on Thursday, June 23rd from 12:30 PM EST to 1:30 PM EST to learn the many ways a book often survives its author.
Dan Frank is the Vice President and Editorial Director of Pantheon at Knopf Doubleday. He is the long-time editor of neurologist and physician Oliver Sacks (Musicophilia: Tales of Music and the Brain, The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat). Sacks passed away in 2015, shortly before the publication of Gratitude, a collection of essays about his battle with cancer and his musings on death.

Cathy Goldsmith is the President and Publisher of Random House’s Beginner Books line and Dr. Seuss publishing program. Prior to that, she worked as Vice President, Associate Publishing Director, and Art Director for the Random House, Golden Books, and Doubleday Young Readers imprints. She worked directly with Theodore Geisel (better known as Dr. Seuss) during his lifetime, and has maintained the legacy of his career ever since. Goldsmith oversaw the editorial and creative process of last year’s What Pet Should I Get?, a previously undiscovered work by Dr. Seuss.

Peter Blackstock is a Senior Editor at Grove Atlantic. He was previously a literary scout in London for foreign publishers and a film company. He has worked with the estates of William S. Burroughs, Harold Pinter, and Allen Ginsberg. In 2016, Grove Press released Wait Till I’m Dead, a collection of 103 poems by Ginsberg, some of which were previously unpublished.

Ken Wright is the Vice President and Publisher of Viking Children’s Books at Penguin Random House. He works with the literary estates of many classic children’s book authors, such as Ludwig Bemelmans (Madeline), Don Freeman (Corduroy), Astrid Lindgren (Pippi Longstocking), Robert McCloskey (Make Way for Ducklings, Homer Price), and Ezra Jack Keats (The Snowy Day).

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