Professor Denning in Publishers Weekly

Our own Professor Denning recently wrote an article in Publishers Weekly’s Soapbox column on the Women’s National Book Association and the wonderful world of book clubs. To view the full size, click on the thumbnail image of the article below! This article appears in the November 5, 2012 edition of the magazine.


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Career Fair Research: ePortfolios Impress Employers

Career Fair Research: ePortfolios Impress Employers



If you’re looking for a reason to update your ePortfolio, try taking a look at the latest research: At the Pleasantville career fair on October 10, 2012 ten out of ten employers who were asked stated that they would look at a candidate’s ePortfolio at some point during the hiring process.


 Two ePortfolio student assistants (also known as “eTerns”) Michelle Birch and Megan Burke approached recruiters from various fields, from finance to communications, about ePortfolio.  The first  presented ePortfolio as a link on a paper resume (placed beneath the contact information) and asked and employers  if they would be inclined to click access the link. Seven of them said they would, while three said they would wait to look at it later on in the hiring process, perhaps before interviewing a candidate.


 Next they showed recruiters ePortfolio pages on the iPad. Most of the employers had never seen an ePortfolio and agreed that it would differentiate the job seeker from other candidates.  After seeing ePortfolio for the first time, one employer said she might even search for ePortfolios going forward. Another employer liked that ePortfolio showcased a candidate’s experience, but warned against posting unprofessional pictures.


When used correctly, placing an ePortfolio link on your resume is enough to make employers curious.  What better reason to polish up your ePortfolio and show employers your unique skills and experience? For assistance with your ePortfolio contact


By: Samantha Egan

Steven Charny, Art Director at Entertainment Weekly

Steven Charny is a Deputy Art Director at the magazine Entertainment Weekly. He came to Professor Baron’s magazine production class this October to speak to the students about his experiences, and teach us about the state of the field. We were very honored to have Mr. Charny visit us and illuminate the role of an Art Director.

As a student of Pace University’s MS in Publishing program, I have the lucky privilege of meeting extraordinary publishing professionals like Steven Charny, Deputy Art Director at Entertainment Weekly and former Senior Art Director of Rolling Stone.  Mr. Charny was nice enough to come talk to Professor Baron’s Magazine Production and Design class this October. He regaled the class with tales of his work, showing us examples of the projects he’s worked on. Mr. Charny gave us great advice on how to get involved (and employed!) in the artistic fields of publishing.

Mr. Charny has worked in magazines for over 20 years. He has been present for the various changes ushered through the digital revolution. When he was starting out, rather than emailing his resume and link to an online portfolio as we would do today, he had to bring his work to different art departments to be evaluated. It was not easy for him to find steady employment at first, but through perseverance (and part-time bartending) he made it happen. When he was starting out, there were no programs like InDesign and Photoshop for the average publisher. Instead, designers would paste photos, text, and other elements onto a page and have the finished page photographed and compiled together. This process takes a lot more time and energy than current digital methods.

Though design processes have become more streamlined and faster in today’s publishing world, Mr. Charny talked about how there is still a lot of pressure to get everything finished on time. Designers working on Entertainment Weekly have just two weeks to put together their finished product. Editors plan out the content well in advance, but the designers don’t get the final material to put into the layout until it is go-time. This leads to a lot of long nights working at tiny details making everything perfect, like the spacing of headline text.

Mr. Charny emphasized the importance of using layouts that help develop the narrative of the story. He said that the online Entertainment Weekly is a different animal than the print version and didn’t ever feel pressure to have a consistent style between the two, which surprised me. Though their tablet version is a direct copy of the print magazine, the web presence of the brand is directed by a different branch of the company. I would have guessed that it is important to check the two versions of a designed feature to make sure they don’t contrast completely- sometimes a red hot design will give a much different view of a story than an understated, cooler scheme.

Instead of waiting to see your favorite publication post an internship or job online, Mr. Charny advised us to just go ahead and send out your resume to different employers. He believes that competition for internships in the magazine field is not as competitive as we may think, and that there’s no harm in reaching out and trying. Great advice for all of us aspiring magazine designers who might not have the courage to give it a try!


By Jenna Vaccaro 

In the News: Newsweek Roundup

As you might have heard, Newsweek has just announced that they are ceasing to publish the printed version of their magazine. Editor Tina Brown stated that we will stop seeing the magazines on stands by the end of the year, and in January of 2013 they will begin to publish a tablet version of the magazine. Read Brown’s letter on the matter here. Content will also be delivered through the website The Daily Beast, a company which they have been partnered with in the past. Take a look at the Newsweek’s page of the Beast here. Brown says thatNewsweek is looking to the future, and hopes to cut out a lot of the cost associated with printing and distribution. Fans and critics alike have taken to the internet to contextualize and process this news.

  • The Wall Street Journal puts the business aspects of this into perspective for those of us who aren’t familiar with the publication. How much will this change save the company and how will advertising revenue be structured with this change?
  • PBS contributor Devin Harner opines that going digital won’t solve Newsweek’s problems. He calls for better, more informed content. 
  • The New York Times gathers reactions from the top names in the industry on their Media Decoder Blog.
  • Tina Brown discusses the decision with CBS News on video.  
  • Buzzfeed has a great post honoring 80 years of Newsweek covers. What one is your favorite?

How do you think Newsweek will fare going digital? Share your opinion in the comments!

What Are You Reading? The Presidential Candidate Edition

In the midst of this year’s presidential election season, our candidates have discussed their opinions on everything from the economy and world peace, to childhood hunger and same sex marriage.  Reading is a very strong influencing force and it is important for voters to know what the candidates read in their spare time and which books have influenced their lives.  How do you think their reading materials reflect on them as men and as presidential candidates?  Take a moment to view how your book list compares to theirs.  Another interesting thing to consider is how each candidate uses different social media sites to publically promote their book lists.  President Obama uses Barnes & Noble’s “Recommended Reading” section and Governor Mitt Romney “pins” his favorite books on his Pinterest account.  Both of these sites can be updated reguarly and to give you a sense of what kinds of books the candidates are reading, I have selected 6 titles from each of them.


President Obama’s robust reading list ranges from classic titles to presidential biographies.  David McCullough’s John Adams is an epic biography of John Adams, the second President of the United States, who has been referred to as the “the colossus of independence.”  In Lessons in Disaster: McGeorge Bundy and the Path to War in Vietnam, Gordon M. Goldstein presents research about the beginning stages of American involvement in Vietnam and interviews with the former National Security Adviser, McGeorge Bundy.  The President also selected The Complete Works of William Shakespeare for his list, including Hamlet, Romeo and Juliet, Henry V, Macbeth, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, and King Lear. 


The Invisible Man by Ralph Ellison, another one of the President’s favorite titles, has been called “a milestone in American literature,” captivating readers since its 1952 release.  Ellison’s anonymous narrator takes readers from a Negro college in a southern, black community to Harlem, New York.  Newsweek International editor, Fareed Zakaria’s The Post-American World provides insight into the progress and resurgence of other world nations and where America lies in the twenty-first century.  Lastly, in The Golden Notebook by Doris Lessing, readers meet Anna, a novelist whose personal notebooks and diaries intertwine as her life falls under the scopes of communism, the African experience, love, and insanity.


Other titles on the President’s Book List are Song of Solomon by Toni Morrison, The Pew Bible by Thomas Nelson, and Gilead by Marilynne Robinson.  For a complete version of President Obama’s Book List, click here.


Presidential Candidate, Mitt Romney’s Pinterest Social Media account includes boards ranging from “Family” and “Television” to “#Built By Us” and “On The Road.”  His “Books” board includes titles that may interest you.  Jared Diamond’s Guns, Germs, and Steel: The Fates of Human Societies has been reviewed as “artful, informative, and delightful” by the New York Review of Books.  Diamond argues that geographical and environmental factors shaped the modern world and follows the path society took to arrive at its present state.  The Adventures of Huckleberry Fin by Mark Twain is stated by the candidate to be his favorite book and is widely considered an American classic that follows the young life of Huck Finn in stories of friendship, love, courage, and morality.  The Life and Times of the Thunderbolt Kid: A Memoir by Bill Bryson was also on the the presidential candidate’s reading list.Bryson’s memoir describes his memories of an “all-American childhood,” filled with superhero dreams and the “happy” family life in the 1950s, impacted by the introduction of automobiles, televisions, and nuclear weapons.


Romney’s list continues with The Wealth and Poverty of Nations by David S. Landes, a best-selling book that analyzes how and why certain nations achieve economic success, using history as a major factor.  The Next 100 Years: A Forecast for the 21st Century by George Friedman offers readers a view of the future for the United States and the world.  L. Ron Hubbard’s  Battlefield Earth: A Saga of the Year 3000 is one of the bestselling science fiction adventure novels of all time that follows 1,000 years of life for mankind under the rule of an alien invader.

Also on presidential candidate Romney’s reading list were East of Eden by John Steinbeck and Ender’s Game by Orson Scottcard.  To view Romney’s “Books” board and Pinterest account, click here.


Clearly, the candidates are very educated and well-informed men, who somehow manage to fit reading into their busy schedules.


By: Diana Cavallo

Diana Cavallo graduated Pace University, Pleasantville in May of 2012, with a Bachelor of Arts in English and Communications, and a minor in Creative Writing.  She has internship positions at The Association of American Publishers and Nancy Yost Literary Agency.  Her interests include magazine and book publishing, with special attention to the editorial, publicity and marketing fields.  Diana will be completing the MS in Publishing program in May of 2013 and would ultimately like to become a novelist and children’s book author.