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Dust Settles on the ReganBooks Closing

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There it is: the “HC” brand that HarperCollins will be slapping on what used to be ReganBooks titles this spring and summer, after which time whatever books are left will be parceled out to existing Harper imprints. Following yesterday’s initial reports on the closure, the LA Times offers more details on the West Coast shutdown, with extensive quotes from Harper/Morrow president Michael Morrison about why the company felt it didn’t really need the office Judith Regan had fought to establish outside New York:

“We have plenty of West Coast authors on our list already,” Morrison told the Times, “and having a physical office in a particular location doesn’t give you any more advantage in this age of the Internet with agents obviously submitting manuscripts all around the world. So it’s not necessary to have a West Coast office.”

Scott Timberg and Josh Getlin also observed that “many in Los Angeles reflected that ReganBook’s presence had made scarcely any impact on the city during its brief tenure here,” quoting literary agent Bonnie Nadel as saying she’d never taken a meeting or even a phone call from anybody at the company after they arrived in town.

One other blip in the story: Hollywood Reporter staffer Georg Szalai spoke to Regan attorney Bert Fields, who says he still expects to file suit against HarperCollins, but chances are we won’t see anything on that front until February, because his New York co-counsel is out of the country right now.

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