Publishing Talks: David Wilk interviews Kent Anderson

March 9, 2010 by  
Filed under PublishingTalks

028bd84In this series of interviews, called Publishing Talks, I have been talking to book industry professionals, each of whom has a different perspective about the future of publishing, books, and culture.  This is a period of disruption and change for all media businesses.
Publishing has been a crucial part of human culture for as long as people have been writing and reading.

How will publishing evolve as our culture is affected by technology, climate change, population density, and the ebb and flow of civilization and its economics? Publishing Talks interviews help us understand the outlines of what is happening, and how we might ourselves interact with and influence the future of publishing as it unfolds. Publishing Talks interviews give people in the book business a chance to talk about ideas and concerns in a public forum that are often only talked about “around the water cooler,” at industry conventions and events, and in emails between friends.

I believe that these interviews give people inside and outside the book industry a chance to hear first hand some of the most interesting and challenging thoughts, ideas and concepts that are currently being discussed within the industry.

In this interview, I had the pleasure of talking to Kent Anderson, Editor-in-Chief of the Scholarly Kitchen, an Society for Scholarly Publishing member, and former Board member. Kent has a BA in English as well as an MBA. He is currently CEO/Publisher for the Journal of Bone & Joint Surgery.  He formerly worked in the Massachusetts Medical Society’s Publishing Division in Product Development and International Business and as Publishing Director for the New England Journal of Medicine. He’s been a publisher, managing editor, copy editor, graphic designer, typesetter, editor, and author. He’s worked at the American Academy of Pediatrics, Medical Economics, and 3M, in addition to other odd jobs here and there (notice, this construction makes all the jobs odd).  And interestingly, he also writes mystery novels in his spare time (he writes the Johnny Denovo Mysteries under the pen name Andrew Kent).  He wrote a very intelligent article about publishing his latest book for the Self-Publishing Review.  And lastly he is a member of an innovative authors’ collective Backwords Books.  Busy guy!

We covered alot of interesting ground in our talk, starting with a long discussion about Jaron Lanier’s latest book, called You Are Not a Gadget, that Kent recently reviewed in depth in the Scholarly Kitchen, a book that raises a number of really interesting concerns about the way the open online economy is working.  That was a great starting off point for a really interesting discussion about online publishing, devices, valuations and pricing, web business models, and many other related subjects.

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