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Posts Tagged ‘Claire Kirch’

HP-16: Printing Plant Keeps Mum on Potter

Though PW’s Claire Kirch tries and tries to find a loophole that would enable someone from the printer responsible for preparing the 12 million-copy first printing of HARRY POTTER AND THE DEATHLY HALLOWS, but doesn’t get very far. At first, Scholastic wouldn’t even divulge where the books are being produced, buy two reliable sources in Crawfordsville, Ind., a rural community of 15,243 residents 50 miles west of Indianapolis, told Kirch that the book is being manufactured at the R.R. Donnelley plant. “HP books are being printed right here in itty-bitty Crawfordsville,” a local resident, who requested anonymity, reported. “We’ve been hearing midnight trains on that seldom-used track to Donnelley’s for weeks now. That’s really the giveaway: middle-of-the-night freight trains on a track that rarely gets used. This is just like last time.” Last time, of course, being 2005, when HARRY POTTER AND THE HALF-BLOOD PRINCE was published.

But when Kirch called the Crawfordsville production plant to inquire what security measures, besides lunch box searches and cellphone bans, are being taken to safeguard what’s being termed, tongue-in-cheek-style, as the “MLK project”, a Donnelley security representative responded, “I can’t discuss that,” and hung up. A corporate spokesperson for Donnelly wouldn’t comment. And then Kirch went back to Scholastic’s spokesperson, Kyle Good – who after first wondering how Kirch got Donnelley’s name, then hearing about the frustration in getting some sort of comment, “wished this correspondent a happy Fourth of July.” Nice…

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Today in AMS: Annual Meeting Delayed (again), More From Radio Free

The San Diego Union-Tribune reports that AMS has, as expected, postponed its annual meeting more than a month following the resignation of one of its directors. Robert Robotti resigned in the wake of the Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing and he had advocated the company go ahead with its annual meeting slated for January 24 – a meeting that would have been the company’s first in four years. Now it’s been rescheduled for February 23, and the company named Marc Ravitz, executive vice president of New York’s Grace & White Co., to fill the vacancy left by Robotti. Grace & White, together with affiliated persons and entities, controls 12 percent of Advanced Marketing’s stock.

On the Perseus & PGW front, the bankruptcy court is still scheduled to meet on February 12 to decide whether the 70 cents on the dollar offer is doable. Publishers Weekly’s Jim Milliot and Claire Kirch report on the “alarm bells” set off by the potential deal. “How can we maintain our visibility when we are becoming an ever-smaller piece of a larger puzzle?” asked Michael Wiegers, executive editor at Copper Canyon Press, which is distributed by Perseus’s Consortium unit. Another Consortium client, Jim Perlman of Holy Cow Press, said he is concerned that with the addition of PGW, Consortium “will lose their ability to handle books with the knowledge and concern they’ve displayed in the past.” Several PGW clients voiced similar questions, wondering where they will fit in at Perseus. “The viability of our list in this marketplace depends in part on a fairly intimate familiarity with what we do,” one PGW publisher said, and another wondered what the “pecking order” will be when all the companies are combined.

As always, for the skinny on the failing fortunes of AMS, check out new offerings from Radio Free PGW. Today they look at the $19 million in books that AMS lost at their Indiana distribution center in 2004, why Perseus may require even longer “float” times than did PGW; and also point people to Mr. Popman’s Place for a breakdown of what might possibly be the real reason AMS hasn’t reported its earnings in several years (hint: a faulty computer system.)

Finally, a disgruntled AMS employee (or management type? Who knows) has decided to strike back. And so we get the lovely “AMS Has WMD” blog, which seems solely designed to take potshots at Radio Free PGW. Make of it what you will, whether from a trolling or humorous perspective…