BTW News Briefs

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Here’s what’s happening this week in the book industry:

The Australian Booksellers Association (ABA) has named its new chief executive officer, Robbie Egan, who will take on the role in December. Earlier this year, the association announced that current CEO Joel Becker would retire at the end of 2018. Egan is the current group operations manager for Melbourne bookstore Readings and has served as ABA’s treasurer and an ABA board member for the past 15 months.

Several book industry members have launched a new campaign to draw attention to physical bookstores this holiday season. The weeklong Love Your Bookstore Challenge, which debuts Saturday, November 10, and runs through Friday, November 16, asks participants to post bookstore photos to Twitter and Instagram with the hashtag #loveyourbookstore to be entered to win bookish prizes. For more information on the project, which is the brainchild of Dominique Raccah, publisher and CEO of independent publisher Sourcebooks, visit the Love Your Bookstore website.

Small Business Saturday, founded by American Express, now has customizable marketing materials available online in the Shop Small Studio, which small businesses can use to promote the November 24 event. These materials include e-mail templates, posters, and more, and a variety of color options have been added this year. Businesses can also send away to AmEx for a Shop Small Kit containing items like tote bags, thank-you cards, and stickers.

The European Union will now allow its members to apply lower value added tax (VAT) rates to electronic publications, including e-books, newspapers, and periodicals and downloadable audiobooks. This month, the EU Council voted to amend the existing VAT directive and allow its 28 member-states to switch to lower rates for such digital items.

Lerner Publishing Group announced that it will become the sole distributor for Creston Books beginning January 1, 2019. In spring 2019, Lerner will distribute three new nonfiction picture books and 32 older titles from Creston Books to the trade and the school and public library markets.

Henry Holt’s Steve Rubin has announced that Ben Schrank will succeed him in his role as the company’s president and publisher, which Rubin has held since 2009. Schrank, who currently heads children’s book publisher Razorbill, will step into his position as senior vice president and publisher on November 1, adding his role as president on May 1, 2019.

Lili Feinberg has joined Simon & Schuster Children’s Books as an associate publicist. Previously, she served as a publicity assistant at Tor/Forge.

Liza Cassity has been promoted to associate director of publishing at Putnam, Dutton, and Berkley. In the Berkley publicity department, Erin Galloway was promoted to deputy publicity director, and Tara O’Connor was promoted to associate publicist.

On November 5, literary nonprofit executive and poet Mary Gannon will become executive director of the Community of Literary Magazines and Presses (CLMP), which provides direct assistance to independent literary book and magazine publishers and advocates on their behalf. Prior to this role, Gannon had been the Academy of American Poets’ associate director and director of content since 2013.

Jean-Claude Arnault was convicted of two counts of rape for his role in the sexual misconduct scandal that led to the postponement of this year’s Nobel Prize in Literature; he was sentenced to two years in prison, the minimum sentence. Arnault, the husband of academy member Katarina Frostenson, was accused last November of sexual misconduct by 18 women.

The Children’s Book Council Diversity Committee announced the winners of the inaugural CBC Diversity Outstanding Achievement Awards, which “recognize children’s publishing professionals and organizations who have made an impact on the publishing of diverse books.” Winners include Bronx Book Festival founder Saraciea Fennell; Phoebe Yeh, vice president and co-publisher of Crown Books for Young Readers; and We Need Diverse Books.

The National Book Foundation named the five books it will feature in the first year of its Literature for Justice program. It characterized the selections as “contemporary titles that shed light on mass incarceration in the United States.”

In an immediate response to an independently chaired diversity review, the Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals (CILIP) has decided to expand the nominations process for the Carnegie and Kate Greenaway Awards to external nomination bodies as well as librarians; introduce a “children’s choice” prize; and set up an equality, diversity, and inclusion advisory panel, among other changes.

The longlist was announced Tuesday for the 2019 Andrew Carnegie Medals for Excellence in Fiction and Nonfiction, which “reflect the expert judgment and insight of library and book professionals who work closely with adult readers,” according to the American Library Association. The six-title shortlist will be announced October 24, and the two winning authors, who will each receive $5,000, will be announced on January 27 during ALA’s Midwinter Meeting.

The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art awarded the four winners of the 13th annual Carle Honors on Thursday, September 27. The Bologna Children’s Book Fair, represented by Elena Pasoli, won the Bridge award; The Sendak Fellowship & Workshop, represented by Lynn Caponera and Dona Ann McAdams, won the Angel award; children’s literature scholar and author Dr. Rudine Sims Bishop won the Mentor award; and Caldecott-winning illustrator Paul O. Zelinsky won the Artist award.

The Goddard Riverside Stephan Russo Book Prize for Social Justice has released the six titles on this year’s shortlist. The winner will be announced at Goddard Riverside’s annual gala on October 30 in Manhattan.

The shortlist for the Scotiabank Giller Prize, a Canadian literary prize, was announced on October 1; five titles were chosen from a longlist of 12 titles, which themselves were chosen from 104 titles submitted by publishers across Canada. Shortlisted titles include French Exit by Patrick deWitt (published by Ecco in the U.S.), a September 2018 Indie Next List pick.

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