#buythisbook #First50Words 3 questions 60 Second Book Review author interview backstory book review book trailer brainstorming buy this book copy editing critique groups ebooks family drama feminism fiction indie author indie publishing literary agents literary fiction love is the answer memoir movie music mystery Nanowrimo NaPoMo path to publication perspective publishing publishing biz revision romance romantic suspense screenwriting self-promotion self-publishing sunday groove Sunday Quote Trailer Park unfairly awesome Women Writing Women YA crossover
Saturday, September 26, 2009
Random House lobby is book nerd Mecca
Posted by Joni Rodgers
Book nerd that I am, I feel choked up every time I push through the revolving door into the lobby at Random House. I always try to get there early so I can walk the entire perimeter, taking in the grand history of this place -- this institution -- built by generations of editors who cared deeply about their authors and authors who cared deeply about their craft. This place literally towers with an unabashed love of books. Floor-to-ceiling shelves flank the expansive entryway. Every tome at eye level was in some way groundbreaking. The covers and titles are iconic, instantly evoking an era, a watershed, a sea change. As a reader and a writer, I'm starstruck.
So many of these book covers transport me to an exact time and place in my life as a reader. I always loved that these particular editions of Gulliver's Travels and Tom Sawyer are displayed together. I bought them both off the dollar-a-bag table at the LaCrosse Public Library's annual used book sale the summer before sixth grade, and I vividly remember sitting up in a huge mulberry tree, sucking on an orange Popsicle, drinking in these two brain-changing works. When I see that cover art, I remember the smell of these great books with the baking grass below and hot, ripe berries hanging in the air around me. Walking the perimeter of the Random House lobby, I feel a personal history with so many of these stories, and I'm profoundly grateful for what these books were in my life.
For a writer (unless you're Dan Brown), a stroll around the Random House lobby is a humbling experience. The layout of the lobby is an accidental parable. At one end is the reception desk; at the other end is that revolving door. (Need I elaborate?)
In the most frustrating moments of my work life, I sternly remind myself of the blood, sweat and tears that built these walls. Every one of these giants was kicked by critics, rejected by readers, thrashed at times by the daily ranch work and personal drain of the writing life. And tucked between the iconic titles and literary giants are thousands of authors who labored in obscurity. I've often wished they'd install library ladders in the Random House lobby, because I'm dying to see who's up there, out of sight and out of mind, but there, dignified, binding intact. It's a privilege to be with them in this building, in this business.
Well. Enough kvelling for Saturday. I've got a deadline looming.
We welcome payola in the form of pies, cakes, neatly folded laundry and free books!
In accordance with FTC regulations, we're required to inform readers that we receive books from publishers, authors, and PR folk for review. We'd like to receive money via an offshore bank account, but that hasn't happened yet. When my dad was in radio back in the '50s, a local baker used to sneak over in the dead of night and fill the back seat of his car with bread and pastries. We would NOT object to this. Please review our review policy here. And let us know if we should leave the car outside the garage tonight.
Peace, love, and statutory compliance ~