By Erik Cagle Senior Editor Try summing up the 2003 season from the book printing market's point of view. It can't be done. Sure, another Potter tome and the return of Oprah's book club did wonders for a struggling trade market, and most feel the elementary-high school (el-hi) sector was as depressed as the economy, with weak adoption programs to match. But, for the most part, the answers to what worked and what didn't pan out depends largely upon who is being asked. Top 10 Book Printers CompanySegmentSales(millions)TotalSales(millions) 1RR DonnelleyChicago$808$4,754 2Quebecor WorldMontreal$749$6,242 3Banta Corp.Menasha, WI$355$1,366 4Von HoffmannSt. Louis$348$535 5Bertelsmann ArvatoNew York$209$276 6Courier Corp.N.
By Erik Cagle "Give 'em hell, Harry!" That's the rally cry for both trade publishers and their print production suppliers, who eagerly await the next installment in the Harry Potter series (give 'em hell J.K. Rowling would be more accurate). And why not? The four-book (and counting) children's fantasy series from Scholastic has sold a staggering 150 million copies worldwide (70 million in the United States), and many of the leading U.S. book printers have dipped their toes in the Potter pool. Who needs an Oprah plug when you have a multi-faceted marketing machine that has licensed movies, trading cards, action figures and all
This is a printing salesperson psychotherapy column. I have to write these every so often because I get bagfuls of letters, gigabytes of e-mails and memory-filling voice mails from distraught and depressed print salespeople. You've got hard jobs, and some of you have stupid bosses and even stupider competitors. These conditions can create considerable anxiety for even the strongest of psyches. The stock market tanked. Mr. Greenspan waited too long to reduce interest rates. The economy has been headed in the wrong direction. The presidential election results in Florida had to be counted, recounted and litigated, and all of the TV coverage sickened