This past week our office received three separate emails detailing some changes happening at Abingdon Press. One focused on the fiction division, the second on the non-fiction division, and the third was from one of the editors making sure we received the news. We really appreciated the communication! So often we hear such news third hand. It is refreshing to hear it directly.
The basic content of the messages were about personnel changes in editorial and marketing. Plus the temporary suspension of receiving new fiction proposals. Their fiction acquisitions are set through 2015 (as they should be by this time) and in a few months their acquisitions will resume as normal.
There are frequent personnel changes in all businesses. Publishing is not exempt. In other words, this news was not earth-shattering but should be considered normal.
What was interesting was the reaction from some in the writing community unusued to seeing official news. At least no one succumbed to shouting “Publishing is Dead!”
Speculation as to the cause for personnel changes at a publishing house can range from “books aren’t selling for traditional publishers anymore so people have to be fired” to “someone must have made management angry” to “they found a better job.” We don’t know the whole story, nor should we. Speculation fuels anxiety. Instead we really need to focus on the “what’s next?” question. Meanwhile publishing at Abingdon will continue unabated.
The cliched phrase “Keep Calm and Carry On” should come to mind when contemplating the publishing environment. Lean on your literary agent or professional advisors. Keep writing. Obedience to your calling is a powerful thing.
[[If you want to make your own "Keep Calm" poster go to the Keep Calm-o-Matic site!]]