5E A brain trust of independent veteran editors, talking about the shifting publishing landscape. We're a brain trust of independent editors bringing decades of cumulative in-house experience to the rapidly shifting landscape of publishing. 5E provides a source for informed discussion while helping authors, agents and publishers create their best work; each member operates independently, but we meet, network, and offer speaking engagements as a group.

Please contact us via either our 5eeditors.com website, individual websites or a private FB message with brief, specific details regarding your project.

5E is thrilled to celebrate the Authors Guild/HMH book deal for FOURTEEN DAYS: AN UNAUTHORIZED GATHERING. Last summer, a...
03/22/2021
Authors Guild Foundation Signs Deal with Houghton Mifflin Harcourt to Publish COVID-Era Collaborative Novel Fourteen Days - The Authors Guild

5E is thrilled to celebrate the Authors Guild/HMH book deal for FOURTEEN DAYS: AN UNAUTHORIZED GATHERING. Last summer, at the recommendation of Judy Sternlight, the Authors Guild commissioned Liz Van Hoose to help get this project off the ground. The result is an unprecedented collaborative novel edited by Margaret Atwood and featuring original contributions from writers across the literary spectrum, including Angie Cruz, Emma Donoghue, Dave Eggers, Diana Gabaldon, Tess Gerritsen, John Grisham, Maria Hinojosa, CJ Lyons, Celeste Ng, Mary Pope Osborne, Ishmael Reed, Roxana Robinson, Hampton Sides, Nafissa Thompson-Spires and Monique Truong. Liz worked with Guild president Douglas Preston and the contributors to develop characters and weave the story together. All proceeds from the book contract will go to the Authors Guild Foundation, the educational and charitable arm of the Authors Guild. Read more about it here: https://www.authorsguild.org/industry-advocacy/authors-guild-foundation-signs-deal-with-houghton-mifflin-harcourt-to-publish-covid-era-collaborative-novel-fourteen-days.
(Pat)

Edited by Margaret Atwood, the novel includes contributions by some of today’s most renowned writers. New York (March 18, 2021): The Authors Guild Foundation announced a deal with Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Books & Media to publish Fourteen Days: An Unauthorized Gathering, a unique collaborative no...

I hope the New Yorker pay wall doesn't keep you from reading this, because it's really good! A bookstore owner in Lawren...
03/14/2021
A Kansas Bookshop’s Fight with Amazon Is About More Than the Price of Books

I hope the New Yorker pay wall doesn't keep you from reading this, because it's really good! A bookstore owner in Lawrence, Kansas, breaks down exactly what it costs the literary ecosystem to buy from Amazon as opposed to from your local indie. My favorite tidbit: If he sells you a copy of the bestselling Where the Crawdads Sing at the Amazon price, he might as well hand you a $5 bill from his cash register (Pat).

https://www.newyorker.com/news/us-journal/a-kansas-bookshops-fight-with-amazon-is-about-more-than-the-price-of-books

The owner of the Raven bookstore, in Lawrence, wants to tell you about all the ways that the e-commerce giant is hurting American downtowns.

https://www.nytimes.com/2021/02/09/magazine/the-case-for-semicolons.html?fbclid=IwAR2b4FUF950nEizzmRROgZwGYBVKjn_More th...
02/09/2021
The Case for Semicolons

https://www.nytimes.com/2021/02/09/magazine/the-case-for-semicolons.html?fbclid=IwAR2b4FUF950nEizzmRROgZwGYBVKjn_
More than once, I have been accused of using too many semicolons. Here is a fellow enthusiast to make the case! (Pat).
https://www.nytimes.com/2021/02/09/magazine/the-case-for-semicolons.html?fbclid=IwAR2b4FUF950nEizzmRROgZwGYBVKjn_deSww8YcS0R5wwSDwpiCiUl_gkDI

There are very few opportunities in life to have it both ways; semicolons are the rare instance in which you can; there is absolutely no downside.

Dear friends of 5E, if you're curious about what we've been up to, check out our latest blog posting. Wishing each of yo...
02/08/2021
To All 5E Friends and Book Lovers — 5E

Dear friends of 5E, if you're curious about what we've been up to, check out our latest blog posting. Wishing each of you a decent 2021. 5eeditors.com/5e-blog/2020/2/14/newsletter-6mkb9

It’s February, so we’re a little late with New Year’s greetings; but we wanted to extend them nonetheless, and to offer a look back at 2019’s developments for the crew at 5E.

Thanks to Judy Bolton-Fasman for posting this, hence bringing it to my attention. An informative look at the world of in...
02/06/2021
Six Authors Demystify Publishing with a Small Indie Press | Nina Boutsikaris, Tyrese Coleman, Jessica Gross, Noam Dorr, Sarah Minor, & Chaya Bhuvaneswar

Thanks to Judy Bolton-Fasman for posting this, hence bringing it to my attention. An informative look at the world of indie presses through the eyes of six published authors. Most seem to have had a positive experience (Pat).

https://catapult.co/stories/six-authors-demystify-publishing-with-a-small-indie-press_boutsikaris_bhuvaneswar_dorr_coleman_minor_gross

Nina Boutsikaris, Jessica Gross, Sarah Minor, Chaya Bhuvaneswar, Tyrese Coleman, and Noam Dorr chat about what they’ve learned—and wish they’d known—about being published.

01/26/2021
www.theedgars.com

Congrats to Kwei Quartey for his Edgar nomination in the Best Novel category for THE MISSING AMERICAN, the first in his new series starring Emma Djan. I worked with Kwei on some of his earlier mysteries -- he's wonderful. The second Emma Djan novel, SLEEP WELL, MY LADY, is just out, and getting a great response. (Judy)http://www.theedgars.com/2021EdgarNominationsPressRelease.pdf

I already posted about the publication of the hilarious novel Black Buck, for which I was an early reader in 2019. But w...
01/23/2021
Cold-Calling Strangers Taught Mateo Askaripour How to Be a Writer

I already posted about the publication of the hilarious novel Black Buck, for which I was an early reader in 2019. But who knew this debut would make the Times list just a few weeks after it hit the stores? Mateo Askaripour is a great interviewee with a fresh voice, a welcoming, pretension-free attitude, and a vibrant social media presence. This man knows how to make a sale....(Pat).

https://www.nytimes.com/2021/01/21/books/review/black-buck-mateo-askaripour.html?referringSource=articleShare

The debut novelist got his start in sales, which served as inspiration for his best seller, “Black Buck.”

Just when you hadn't thought about American Dirt in months, here comes a deep dive from New York magazine. I am not taki...
01/05/2021
The Implosion of American Dirt

Just when you hadn't thought about American Dirt in months, here comes a deep dive from New York magazine. I am not taking a stance on all of the politics involved, but reading with interest as I always do about our changing industry (is it?) (Pat).

https://www.vulture.com/article/american-dirt-jeanine-cummins-book-controversy.html#_ga=2.58067690.172672432.1609697622-145103688.1443190315

How one of publishing’s most hyped books became its biggest horror story — and still ended up a best seller.

Happy New Year, friends of 5E! Here's a little present for you, an insightful writing-craft piece by Anna Pitoniak that ...
01/02/2021
What Being an Editor Taught Me About Writing

Happy New Year, friends of 5E! Here's a little present for you, an insightful writing-craft piece by Anna Pitoniak that I stumbled across. It's from 2017 and it still rings true. Wishing you lots of good writing, reading, editing, and agenting in the New Year. Also some meaningful bonding time, prosperity, laughter, and good health. We at 5E are glad to see the back of 2020. (Judy)

I’m an editor at Random House, but for the last several years I’ve been writing around the edges of my day job: mornings, nights, weekends, wherever I can grab the free time. I began my first novel…

In early January, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt releases a first novel I really enjoyed working on, Black Buck by Mateo Aska...
12/23/2020
Order Black Buck, ISBN: 035838088X | HMH

In early January, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt releases a first novel I really enjoyed working on, Black Buck by Mateo Askaripour, who is of Iranian and Jamaican descent. It's a workplace satire based on a tech company Mateo used to work for, and looks at the struggles of a young man from Brooklyn's Bed-Stuy trying to navigate this not so brave new world after meeting the company's owner while serving him at Starbucks. A rave endorsement from Colson Whitehead can's hurt. Mateo is mostly self-taught as a writer and is really a quick study as well as a natural storyteller (Pat).

https://www.hmhco.com/shop/books/emblackem-embuckem/9780358380887

Buy Black Buck, ISBN: 035838088X from Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. Shop now.

This is very welcome news! Julie and Cindy are excellent editors with years of experience, and it's great to see new ind...
12/18/2020
Spiegel & Grau

This is very welcome news! Julie and Cindy are excellent editors with years of experience, and it's great to see new indie ventures form as the big publishers consolidate so massively (Pat).

https://www.spiegelandgrau.com/

We are a new multi-platform publisher. We understand the power of stories to enhance meaning, deepen understanding, engage emotions, effect change, and enlarge our sense of humanity by connecting us to people and places we may never experience in our lifetimes. As a team, we are storytelling experts...

My former colleague Gerry Howard looks back at the trade paperback "revolution" that gave writers like J.M. Coetzee and ...
12/15/2020
On the Glory Days of the Great American Trade Paperback

My former colleague Gerry Howard looks back at the trade paperback "revolution" that gave writers like J.M. Coetzee and David Foster Wallace their first publications ins paperback original. For Coetzee, qualify that to be first publication in the U.S. It really was something different to try to introduce new voices in that format then. Change in publishing is possible, even if it's as slow as molasses in January, as my mother used to say....(Pat).

https://lithub.com/on-the-glory-days-of-the-great-american-trade-paperback/

The 1980s were an exciting and highly significant time in the evolution of the publishing format known as the trade paperback. Many tens of millions of book buyers had grown up buying and reading t…

A very interesting but also sobering look at changes in the publishing business. No worries, the header doesn't mean tha...
10/20/2020
The end of the general trade publishing concept | The Idea Logical Company

A very interesting but also sobering look at changes in the publishing business. No worries, the header doesn't mean that publishing is "ending." It is more precisely morphing into a different kind of operation....(Pat)

https://www.idealog.com/blog/the-end-of-the-general-trade-publishing-concept/#.X48sTikDvIk.twitter

My brilliant friend Joe Esposito has written a piece to explain why Penguin Random House would want to acquire Simon & Schuster. I have also been thinking about why PRH, or any of the other three of the “Big Five”, would want to acquire S&S. In fact, two of the three, Hachette and HarperCollins,...

The Brooklyn Book Festival is all virtual this year, enabling a wide range of panelists and moderators. I have already r...
09/29/2020
Home - Brooklyn Book Festival

The Brooklyn Book Festival is all virtual this year, enabling a wide range of panelists and moderators. I have already registered for several talks because even if it's virtual, I wonder if there is a limit that the platform can hold. Maybe not, but....early is always better, when voting or registering for a popular event! (Pat).

https://brooklynbookfestival.org

Join us for the 2020 Brooklyn Book Festival as we celebrate our 15th anniversary of presenting free literary programming! We are looking forward to the fall and do hope that October will be a time when cultural gatherings and celebrations can once again take place.  As our planning progresses, we w...

DC is a great book town and the virtual line up at this annual festival is a treat! (Pat). https://www.loc.gov/events/20...
09/25/2020
Schedule  | 2020 National Book Festival  | Events at the Library of Congress  | Library of Congress

DC is a great book town and the virtual line up at this annual festival is a treat! (Pat).

https://www.loc.gov/events/2020-national-book-festival/schedule/?utm_campaign=wp_book_club&utm_medium=email&utm_source=newsletter&wpisrc=nl_books

All National Book Festival events on Sept. 25-27 will take place online, culminating in a program on PBS television on Sunday, Sept. 27, at 6 p.m. ET (check local listings).

https://www.newyorker.com/books/page-turner/the-perfect-prose-of-a-joan-didion-photo-caption?utm_source=nl&utm_brand=tny...
09/24/2020
The Perfect Prose of a Joan Didion Photo Caption

https://www.newyorker.com/books/page-turner/the-perfect-prose-of-a-joan-didion-photo-caption?utm_source=nl&utm_brand=tny&utm_mailing=TNY_Daily_092220&utm_campaign=aud-dev&utm_medium=email&bxid=5be9febe3f92a404693a4b21&cndid=27078735&hasha=83d3380b05e0b3b7f4ff3f29bc06723b&hashb=5c0d4ebbbbc623cf54d984d75d6d5040ebea64d8&hashc=f3699f658f31134980e58487050bf67ccc58a61d0309fa3e8a3f6017bdb82671&esrc=AUTO_OTHER&mb
https://www.newyorker.com/books/page-turner/the-perfect-prose-of-a-joan-didion-photo-caption?utm_source=nl&utm_brand=tny&utm_mailing=TNY_Daily_092220&utm_campaign=aud-dev&utm_medium=email&bxid=5be9febe3f92a404693a4b21&cndid=27078735&hasha=83d3380b05e0b3b7f4ff3f29bc06723b&hashb=5c0d4ebbbbc623cf54d984d75d6d5040ebea64d8&hashc=f3699f658f31134980e58487050bf67ccc58a61d0309fa3e8a3f6017bdb82671&esrc=AUTO_OTHER&mbid=CRMNYR062419&utm_term=TNY_Daily

A fascinating look at the education of a master wordsmith who learned much of her trade writing photo captions in which every word had to create a lively counterpoint to the accompanying image (Pat).
https://www.newyorker.com/books/page-turner/the-perfect-prose-of-a-joan-didion-photo-caption?utm_source=nl&utm_brand=tny&utm_mailing=TNY_Daily_092220&utm_campaign=aud-dev&utm_medium=email&bxid=5be9febe3f92a404693a4b21&cndid=27078735&hasha=83d3380b05e0b3b7f4ff3f29bc06723b&hashb=5c0d4ebbbbc623cf54d984d75d6d5040ebea64d8&hashc=f3699f658f31134980e58487050bf67ccc58a61d0309fa3e8a3f6017bdb82671&esrc=AUTO_OTHER&mbid=CRMNYR062419&utm_term=TNY_Daily

The caption, in the August 1, 1965, issue of American Vogue, sounds like Didion in its rhythm, care, and thrift, and also in its swerve toward something more troubling or mysterious.

Tomorrow is the pub date for James Lee Burke's A Private Cathedral. It's one of his best! I didn't know it was his 40th ...
08/10/2020
James Lee Burke | Author

Tomorrow is the pub date for James Lee Burke's A Private Cathedral. It's one of his best! I didn't know it was his 40th novel until I saw this on his home page, where all manner of big names offer their congratulations.

I worked with Jim on eleven of those forty books and it was always a great experience. As Michael Connelly notes in his tribute, at age 83, Jim never "phones it in." I would say the same of Michael! These two giants in the crime and mystery genre are two of the most hardworking people I've met in a long career in the book world. And they NEVER take readers or booksellers for granted.

Jim knew some hard times in the middle of his career. When things started to look up, he would send handwritten thank-yous to every bookstore owner who supported his work. He is a master stylist and also a Southern-born gentleman in the best way. A man of honor, and a keen student of the history way that informs all of his work.

Best to him for continued bestsellerdom! (Pat)

https://www.jamesleeburke.com/

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Have any of the wonderful editors in this group read Emily Wilson's new translation of The Odyssey? (It's the first translation in English by a woman and it is all kinds of wonderful.)