Mother Jones Named Magazine of the Year

Mother Jones was named “Magazine of the Year” on last night on the National Magazine Awards for “finding ‘new ways to engage audiences and continue its practice of fearless journalism.'”

Mother Jones is a reader-supported nonprofit news organization that does independent and investigative reporting on everything from politics and climate change to education and food (plus cat blogging). Some 9 million people come log on to the site each month. Mother Jones  publishes an award-winning, 200,000-circulation magazine, and have recently launched a new podcast.

Other winners during last night’s awards gala included: New York Magazine and New York Times withe three awards each, California Sunday for design and photography, and Modern Farmer for general excellence in special interest magazines. Here is a complete list of winners from the night.

The National Magazine Awards are sponsored by the American Society of Magazine Editors in association with the Columbia Journalism School.

Happy 100th Birthday Roald Dahl!

Roald Dahl

Today marks the 100th birthday for the late, great Author, poet, screenwriter, and fighter pilot, Roald Dahl. Dahl lives on through his amazing work such as James and the Giant PeachCharlie and the Chocolate FactoryMatildaThe WitchesFantastic Mr FoxThe BFG, and The Twits among otherssome of which were adapted into successful screenplays and films.

roald dahl works

Dahl had a way with words throughout his writing career, which the Huffington Post compiled in an article titled “50 Amazing Words Roald Dahl Made Up” You can click the link and read some interesting words that Dahl used in his stories.

“A person is a fool to become a writer. His only compensation is absolute freedom. He has no master except his own soul, and that, I am sure, is why he does it,” Roald Dahl

Happy Birthday Roald Dahl!happy birthday road dahl


IN THE NEWS: Winning Scores for Casual Vacancy and Industry Debuts

Older Harry Potter fans will be happy to learn that J.K. Rowling’s first adult novel since the wizarding series, The Casual Vacancy was at the top of Publishers Weekly Bestseller List.  With a #1 Debut, Rowling’s novel beat the E.L. James Fifty Shades of Grey phenomenon and Mark Owen’s No Easy Day by over 90,000 purchased copies.  Casual Vacancy generated lots of publicity, not just for its magically famous author, but for the circumstances surrounding its publication, like nondisclosure agreements.  According to a Publishers Weekly article by Louisa Ermelino, Casual Vacancy had an initial print run of 2 million copies from its Little Brown publisher. 


The following video is of JK Rowling’s recent appearance on The Daily Show, where she discussed her personal view on American politics with Jon Stewart. Click here to watch the full interview. 



Rowling’s success proves that print publishing is not being totally overpowered by e-books, despite the flux of sales statistics within the past two years.  She had the third biggest print opening of 2012, according to Nielsen BookScan and 375,000 copies in its first six days on sale in different formats.  Gabe Habash notes other authors who have seen print debut success in a Publishers Weekly article, including Charlaine Harris and Nora Roberts.  In 2011, Harris’ Deadlocked sold 77,913 copies in its first week on sale, while Roberts’s recent The Last Boyfriend release sold over 80,000 copies duringits initial release week last May.  


In terms of statistics, the publishing industry had more successful titles in 2011 than 2012, but it may go without saying that the attention this year’s releases have earned is near unparalleled.  Habash believes that the November releases of Janet Evanovich’s Notorious Nineteen, and Jeff Kinney’s The Third Wheel as two of the titles that may increase 2012’s print sales.  It is also interesting to read that Nielsen BookScan’s lists Stephen King’s new title, The Wind Through the Keyhole, had only a 59,099 print debut.  Does this number disparity signify a change in trade book trends and a new wave of bestselling-author-staples-names?  The indsutry will simply have to wait and see how the success of print runs progresses and if Rowling’s return to Number 1 is Casual or long-term.

IN THE NEWS: Publishing Article Round-Up

The M.S. in Publishing Blog wants to keep students, faculty and alumni up to date with the latest publishing industry buzz. “In The News” is a new blog feature  that rounds up interesting publishing articles to share with readers!  This installment features two articles from The Huffington Post


However disappointed female readers are by the article, “Female Editors-In-Chief Make $15,000 Less Than Male Counterparts: Folio Survey,” it’s important to arm yourself with this information as you enter the job world.  We learn that female editors-in-chief make $15,000 less on average than their male counterparts, according to information from a Folio magazine annual survey.   513 editors were surveyed by Folio to discover that male editor-in-chiefs or editorial directors earned an average annual salary of $100,800, while women were paid $85,100.  Shocked yet?  The difference between male and female executive salaries was worse, $18,500.  If you’re interested in learning more about salaries that were influenced by location and education, visit Folio.  


An article that shines light on women in publishing is “When a Woman’s Word Is Gold: How Women Are Redefining the Publishing World,” by blog author Daleen Berry.   As a female author and publisher, Berry writes, “If you’re a woman, this is your time.”   She details her experience at last week’s Women’s Fiction Festival in Matera, Italy.  She hightlighted the festival’s theme of  “Publishing Is a Button,”  and the concepts of the digital revolution, ebooks, indie publishers, and the debate about agents or self-publishing that were evident in many workshops.  The most important thing she learned was that “the publishing world is now listening to women.”  Berry notes that female readers make up 80% of the reading population and this strong influence pushes certain trends and bestsellers, like the Fifty Shades of Grey craze.  To learn what other festival attendees had to say, continue reading her post!


If you have found any interesting publishing articles that you would like to see in “In The News,” please email Diana Cavallo at

-By Diana Cavallo