A Book Bloggers View Inside NYC’s Publishing Houses

I have always told myself that if I ever had to return to the workforce I would be thrilled to be the person who gets to water the plants at the local nursery.  Seriously, that would be really fun!  But after visiting some fantastic publishing houses while I was in New York City last week, I think my dreams of watering plants may take a back burner to wanting to work in these beautiful offices.  Because who wouldn’t want to be surrounded by books all day?

Having never set foot in a publishing house before, I appreciate and thank Random House, HarperCollins, Scholastic, Lee and Low Books, and Macmillan (which for some reason I have no photos of but they are located in the landmark Flatiron building) for opening their doors so this gal could get an insiders look to the industry.

Each publisher approached us differently, each had varying degrees of questions, some sat us down as a focus group to discuss book blogger and publisher relations, another provided a guest speaker, and for some it was great to just sit back, relax and talk.  If there was one thing that I learned, it is this:  book bloggers are grass root activists and publishers are taking notice.  It’s exciting.  While I don’t advocate getting “too comfortable” with publishers, I think in the long run, everybody wins.

Random House lobby:

Lenore, me, Amy, Nicole, Trish, and Michelle inside Random House:

It would be too tempting to walk down this hallway everyday and not stop to look at books:

The review copies closet:

Random House galleys:

Random House has a wall in their office where visiting illustrators can leave their mark. Recognize any?

And opposite of that, is a wall for visiting children to share their talent as well.  Too cute!


Giveaways for Random Buzzers:

A  visit to HarperCollins Publishers:

So Harper has their own recording studio.  Somehow we got talked into doing this video.  Somebody stop me next time!

Scholastic lobby:

The entire Harry Potter Collection signed by J.K. Rowling in a pensieve:

Perhaps what is my favorite photo from the entire trip:

Is that not fantastic or what?!!

Rick Riordan just *happened* to be in the back corner of the office signing 39 Clues stock:

Book bloggers listening to author and Scholastic editor Aimee Friedman:

Fantastic book bloggers out on the Scholastic patio in front of a beautiful New York City skyline:

Scholastic has this awesome archive library down in the basement where they catalog at least two copies of every title that they’ve published.  Seriously cool!

Lee and Low Books is one of my favorite small presses which publishes multicultural picture books.  They’ve just acquired a new imprint, Tu Books, which will publish their first title next year and focuses on multicultural characters in young adult fantasy and science fiction.

Amy, Nicole and I at Lee and Low Books.

So there you have it! And can you imagine that even with these awesome publisher visits, I still got jealous when I heard the other various publishing houses that other bloggers went to.  Jeez.  Want my cake and eat it too?!

49 comments


  1. That sounds so awesome! I would have been so tempted to reach out and pet all those lovely stacks of books!

    on June 2nd, 2010 at 12:34 am
  2. Rebecca – Who says we didn’t give into temptation! :)

    on June 2nd, 2010 at 12:48 am
  3. Give me a minute while I just wipe the big string of drool hanging out of my mouth! All those books! I would have had itchy fingers at some of those places…who would miss one tiny little copy of Linger? You all look wonderful and happy! Thank you for sharing!

    on June 2nd, 2010 at 4:10 am
  4. I think I’d just wander around with my mouth open!

    on June 2nd, 2010 at 5:09 am
  5. WOW!!! I can’t imagine being around so many books all the time. In fact, part of the reason I became a book blogger was to spend more of my life with books. It sounds like the same for you…Thanks for all the wonderful pictures! I will do everything I can to get on the publishing tour next year!

    on June 2nd, 2010 at 7:30 am
  6. I only attended the Scholastic viewing, but it was great to hear about Ruth Ames’ writing journey and to meet everyone unexpectedly at the tour. I loved that archive room!

    on June 2nd, 2010 at 7:49 am
  7. Thanks for sharing! Very cool. And enjoyed the video :)

    on June 2nd, 2010 at 8:51 am
  8. Wow! Lovely pics! I would love to walk through those libraries. Thanks for sharing!

    on June 2nd, 2010 at 8:53 am
  9. Wow, I always thought it must be great to see “the inside” of a publisher’s office, but now I just can’t help but stare at the page with my mouth open.

    Btw, the small movie isn’t embarrassing at all! I really enjoyed being able to put a face and a voice to the blogs I’m reading.

    on June 2nd, 2010 at 8:58 am
  10. I really enjoyed the virtual tour. Intoxicating…

    on June 2nd, 2010 at 8:58 am
  11. I’m thinking I really missed out by not going on the publishing house tours!

    on June 2nd, 2010 at 9:01 am
  12. Thank you for the tour! So interesting and fun to experience it vicariously. I especially loved the video, where I got to put faces with names.

    on June 2nd, 2010 at 9:21 am
  13. Great pictures, Natasha! I was jealous of the tours I didn’t go on as well. ;)

    on June 2nd, 2010 at 9:23 am
  14. hey natasha – I could not stay this year b/c my hubby was leaving town but plan to next year. Let me know if you need any help :)

    on June 2nd, 2010 at 10:04 am
  15. Wow – that sure looks like an awesome bunch of tours!

    on June 2nd, 2010 at 10:20 am
  16. I’m so jealous of the publishing tours! I didn’t get into NYC until Tuesday after being at my college roommate’s wedding weekend, but I hope to tour the houses next year. It was also nice to meet you in person at BBC!

    on June 2nd, 2010 at 10:41 am
  17. These are great photos. I don’t think we officially “met” but I was at the Scholastic Tour and at the Book Blogger Convention.

    You captured the tours quite well.

    Looking forward to reading your blog.

    Take care,
    Michelle

    on June 2nd, 2010 at 12:14 pm
  18. This was such a fun, fun post — thanks for sharing all the great information and awesome photos! I would love to get lost in any of those random “closets” where ARCs and giveaways are kept. Or anywhere in the publishing house, really. Awesome!

    on June 2nd, 2010 at 1:18 pm
  19. Aw, wonderful! Wonderful that all these publishers welcomed you in and showed you around, and wonderful that you shared it with us!

    on June 2nd, 2010 at 1:23 pm
  20. What a great article! The photos are glorious! Thanks for sharing this experience with us. GL

    on June 2nd, 2010 at 1:52 pm
  21. Great pics it was a pleasure to meet you!

    on June 2nd, 2010 at 2:48 pm
  22. It was great to meet all the bloggers! Come back soon!
    Best wishes,
    Aimee Friedman/Ruth Ames

    on June 2nd, 2010 at 3:31 pm
  23. Thanks so much for sharing these pictures. I so wish I could have been there. This is just fantastic. I can easily see how watering plants may be put on the back burner. You could start a plant watering company to the publishing houses I suppose. :)

    on June 2nd, 2010 at 3:34 pm
  24. Sounds like a trip to remember. This looks so fun! Wishing I had been there. I love the pictures. Thanks for sharing!

    on June 2nd, 2010 at 3:51 pm
  25. This looks amazing! I would definitely want a job in a publishing house except I would just stare at the pretty books all day. Or stop staring and start reading. haha

    It’s interesting that publishers see bloggers as a sort of grass root activist. I like it :)

    on June 2nd, 2010 at 4:11 pm
  26. Natasha, it was fun to meet you.

    on June 2nd, 2010 at 4:14 pm
  27. oh i am so drooling also! i love the video! to put a little character & personality with your blogs & names is awesome! I so missed being there this year but next year nothing is holding me back! And I agree with ya, a job in a publishing house, even to just water the plants or sweep the floors, and I think I would be in heaven! thanks for sharing the fantastic pictures!

    on June 2nd, 2010 at 4:34 pm
  28. Fun pictures! Way cute video! I have a hard time imagining ever being able to participate in such a fun week.

    on June 2nd, 2010 at 4:34 pm
  29. We weren’t around in the morning, but I’d love to do that in the future, and love your recap.

    Jennifer

    on June 2nd, 2010 at 4:45 pm
  30. Wow, what a great little video. You all did great and I loved hearing you all talk about your blogs.

    on June 2nd, 2010 at 5:19 pm
  31. Wow, that looks like so much fun! I hope I can get to NYC earlier next year and go on a few publisher tours. It was really nice to meet you, however briefly, last weekend :) Thanks for all your working helping organize the BBC, it was so much fun.

    on June 2nd, 2010 at 5:26 pm
  32. Can I just be honest and say my stomach hurts with envy! LOL Next year I will be figuring out how to make this trip. It is a book geek’s dream!! BTW, if we start a “cleaning” business and work after hours we could sit and read those books while “cleaning”…Let’s do it!

    on June 2nd, 2010 at 7:46 pm
  33. I love the video!! Putting voices to faces and blogs – it has to be one of the highlights of meeting IRL. Those stacks and stacks of books are definitely drool-worthy! It looks like you had a blast!

    on June 2nd, 2010 at 7:46 pm
  34. Wow! That is fabulous that you got to go through all those publishing houses! I can’t even imagine how cool that must have been. Thanks for sharing those photos and that experience with us :)

    on June 2nd, 2010 at 9:49 pm
  35. Can you tell I”m drooling on the keyboard??!! Wow!!

    on June 2nd, 2010 at 9:57 pm
  36. Thank you so much for sharing about your wonderful experiences at the BEA! I love these pictures that you have shared. I can’t imagine getting to work in a place where you are surrounded by books all day. I just hope that the people working in those offices know how lucky they are!

    on June 2nd, 2010 at 10:29 pm
  37. What an experience! I am so hopeful that I can make it to BEA one of these years. Maybe next year?

    on June 3rd, 2010 at 6:26 am
  38. [...] Book Blogger’s View Inside NYC’s Publishing Houses, courtesy of Maw [...]

    on June 3rd, 2010 at 8:34 pm
  39. Thanks for posting all the pics and commentary – felt a little like being there. :)

    on June 3rd, 2010 at 9:13 pm
  40. Looks like a fabulous time…my kind of vacation. And yes indeed, book bloggers rock.

    on June 3rd, 2010 at 10:17 pm
  41. Sounds like you had a blast! And it was great to see you at Scholastic.

    on June 4th, 2010 at 11:28 am
  42. I wish I would have known about these tours. I missed it and your pictures look wonderful!

    on June 4th, 2010 at 10:22 pm
  43. Great post — how fun. Every time I’m in a publishing house, I’m there for work — so much more exciting to be there for fun.

    on June 5th, 2010 at 5:46 am
  44. I got to tour 3 publishers and enjoyed all of them for different reasons. I love the video y’all made! It was wonderful to see you again – thanks for taking Julie and I on the subway!

    on June 5th, 2010 at 4:15 pm
  45. [...] was flabbergasted by the tour the book bloggers at BEA got of some NY publishing houses. Here is Natasha of Maw Books’ report, complete with drool worthy pictures. I think the next RomCon needs to be held in Toronto. Either [...]

    on June 7th, 2010 at 8:11 am
  46. I love that video!!! I so hate that I missed out on BEA and the convention this year! Y’all really made it look like a lot of fun.

    on June 8th, 2010 at 9:06 am
  47. [...] (Maw Books) wrote in detail about her visits to some NYC publishing houses. Me = very jealous! She noted: If there was one thing that I learned, it is this: book bloggers are [...]

    on June 9th, 2010 at 8:01 am
  48. Wow, what a sneak peek! Thanks for sharing your photos.

    on June 9th, 2010 at 5:32 pm
  49. Thanks for sharing! Very cool. And enjoyed the video :)

    on September 8th, 2010 at 10:02 am

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