The process of publishing a book has many moving parts. The marketing team needs to be studying their audience while the copyeditors and fact-checkers are working on the manuscript. The design team is creating the perfect cover while the author is trying not to have their third mental breakdown. There’s a lot going on. Things are constantly moving, going, working. But when you’re looking at it as an archivist, when the work is done, everything is still.
For grammar experts and novices alike, compiled here is a short list of books dedicated to presenting the particulars of the English language in an accessible, engaging, and fun (yes, fun!) way.
I have a confession: I hoard books. I know the problem is bad because my cat keeps knocking over the teetering “to read” pile on my nightstand. Over the years, I’ve gotten some books I think are pretty cool, and I became curious about how much my collection was actually worth. Through a chat with the friendly folks in the Rare Book Room at Powell’s, I got a better idea of what collectors look for and what gives used books value. When I got home, I grabbed my copy of CHOKE by Chuck Palahniuk and put my lessons to the test.
When you walk into a bookstore, unless you are on the hunt for a specific release or beloved author, generally an enticing book cover will draw you over to a particular selection. Maybe you notice the bold typographical choices, the striking illustration, the contrasting colors. While you’re admiring the feat of creativity in your hands and considering whether you’re willing to invest in the content within, do you think about the human responsible for the interesting cover?
The written word only matters insofar as it is made available and accessible—and in this case, insofar as it can be taxed. With the Trump administration dealing with the aftermath of a trade war with China, many consumers and publication producers are licking their wounds. In an unprecedented tariff implementation, almost every form of publication is being exposed to a 10 percent tax increase that started September 1, 2019. A second wave of taxes will come in December 2019.
Have you ever fallen prey to a beautiful book and bought it simply because it was pretty? Cover designers work hard, and well-made covers are usually responsible for someone stopping to browse. A similar phenomenon happens with preorder gifts, which leave readers desiring more than just the story.