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Learning Today Will Last a Lifetime

30 Sep

Traci Marlin (left) and Sheila Boggess speak to Baylor students.

It doesn’t seem so long ago I sat in News 101 at the University of Missouri School of Journalism. What I learned there, though, is still sticking after all these years. Those daily tests over The Associated Press (AP) Stylebook helped prepare me for many things.

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What’s Yours is Mine: Ethics and Etiquette of Mobile Communication

14 Jun

Living in the information age, I have heard lectures on technology’s effect on print publication in numerous journalism and English classes.  In my classes, we debate questions like:

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TSTC Publishing Salutes Two of Its Own

4 Jun

TSTC Publishing salutes two of its staff for winning top honors. Projects Manager Grace Arsiaga won Waco’s TSTC Employee of the Year and Departmental Secretary Melanie Peterson won a 2010 NISOD Excellence Award.

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From the Publisher’s Desk: The Semi-Latest Book Publishing Industry News, 4/3/10

3 Apr

So this Saturday finds me up at the office with the blinds shut on my window while getting caught up on a variety of things that I didn’t get done during this four-day week that had a two-day trip out to Abilene wedged into it to discuss all things wind energy: approving pending requisitions, sending out belated emails, and closing out weekly reports. Plus, to top it all off, with all the running around, I didn’t even remotely have time to watch over my rss feeds like I normally would so that’s why this is the semi-latest publishing news as it comes from the week of March 22-26. On the other hand, this week’s news has been dominated by all things iPad and until I actually get to play around with one, I’ll try to stay out of that discussion.

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Web-Based Applications:

24 Mar

Social media. Social media. Social media. Nine times out of ten I want to scream, Enough already! Every day new apps are coming out . . . and while most of them are at least moderately interesting, who has the time (or energy) to incorporate all these applications springing up like mushrooms? Between blogging, Facebook, and Twitter alone (plus the concomitant, Statcounter, Feedburner, Flickr, Twitpic, and more), it’s not exactly the best return on investment to spend even more time gathering, sending, and responding to content flying around the Internet. I mean, unless you’re a social media manager who’s paid to develop carpal tunnel syndrome and have eyes as watery and red as a hamster’s, we really all do have our regular jobs to do!

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From the Publisher’s Desk: Top Book Publishing Industry News 3/5-3/19/10

20 Mar

The conversation piece on my desk this week has been this coffee mug that Wes & Sheila picked up from another publisher—a venerable, long-time university press—at the TCCTA convention week before last. If I was still teaching, I could use it in class to illustrate the definition of disingenuous. I mean, c’mon people! If you’re not trying to sell books, make money, make a profit (if for no other reason than to keep your hard-working employees gainfully employed), then what are you doing in an exhibit hall trying to pick up textbook adoptions!?! Anyone who knows me knows that I’m not exactly the most money-grubbing book publisher alive—I’m working on it, though—but we can all at least be honest about what we’re doing and what effects we’re hoping to achieve.

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Publishing Conferences: The Changing Landscape of Scholarly Communication in the Digital Age

8 Feb

confbanner2Blogging has been light lately—then again, blogging is almost always light—but the last month has been particularly busy with the PR blitz about to kick off for the new RV DVDs and forthcoming RV books. (Certainly, however, it does seem like a million years ago, not just a month, since I had the time/inclination to spend a big chunk of publishing-related energy doing things like editing videos of trips to Abilene.) This next week, though, will be a change of pace as I’ll be attending The Changing Landscape of Scholarly Communication in the Digital Age conference at Texas A&M in College Station, Texas.

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Recommended Business Resources: MBA Working Girl Podcasts

17 Jul

Okay, so I have to admit it: at heart I’m something of a Luddite. I’m still using rabbit ears on the TV, had dial-up Internet at home for six years until going broadband a couple of months ago, and just finally got a cell phone last year only after losing the charger for my wife’s phone and then discovering it was cheaper to buy another phone with the charger included rather than buying the charger alone. For sure, for a guy who fell into book publisher because I liked books as objects all on their own, I was born in the wrong millennium given that they’re quickly becoming a secondary—at best—delivery system for information. But, what did I expect, having the kind of non-tech attitude that mirrors Homer Simpson saying, “I hear they have the Internet on computers now.”

On the brighter side, now that we’ve got broadband at home I have dived feet first into the podcast section at iTunes and have been downloading hundreds of different podcasts on publishing, business, management, marketing, project management, and other related subjects. And for sure, there’s one series of podcasts I’ve happily subscribed (and listened) to: MBA Working Girl Podcast.

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Book Publishing Operations: Consultants & Operational Analysis

28 Apr

Now that the semester is over—with the exception of putting the final touches on Karen Mitchell Smith’s Taking Charge: Your Education, Your Career, Your Life—the summer book orders are filled, and we have no interns for the next couple of weeks, the pace and atmosphere has certainly quieted down.

But, not too much. Currently, now that the letter of agreement has been signed and terms of confidentiality have been squared away, we’ve been (and still are) getting ready for a two-day site visit next week from a publishing consultant we’ve hired. Finally, we’ll have an outside professional evaluate our operation from top to bottom—contracts, financials, workflow, software, personnel, marketing, distribution, and the rest of the whole nine yards—to calculate our progress against standard publishing industry benchmarks and make recommendations for the future.

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