University Press Week Blog Tour Day 5: Author Conversations

thanks to authorsThe final day of the University Press Week blog tour focuses on presses in conversation with their authors. Here at Princeton we would like to take a moment to thank all of our wonderful authors across many disciplines, without whom our esteemed publishing program could not exist. In the past year, PUP has been fortunate enough to publish multiple Nobel Prize winners, up-and-coming stars, renowned scholars and cultural critics. Our authors range from game theorists to astrophysicists, from art historians to professional ornithologists.

Each week on the PUP blog, we feature conversations with our authors about our books. These conversations, such as this one with n+1 co-founder Mark Greif, this one with classics professor Josiah Ober, or this one with biologists and bee experts Olivia Messinger Carril and Joseph Wilson, always provide wonderful behind-the-scenes glimpses of the writing process the origins of our authors’ research.

Today, these university presses share conversations with their own authors:

Temple University Press
Columbia University Press
University of Virginia Press
Beacon Press
University of Illinois Press
Southern Illinois University Press
University Press of Kansas
Oregon State University Press
Liverpool University Press
University of Toronto Press

University Press Week Blog Tour day 4: #TBT

UpWeekThe University Press Week blog tour continues with day four, aptly themed Throwback Thursday. Delve into the fascinating past of university press publishing with new featured posts from these presses:

Project Muse celebrates their 20th anniversary by offering some highlights from their 20 years of university press content.

University of Minnesota Press shares infographics highlighting their 90th birthday this year.

University of Chicago Press offers a TBT written as a letter from the past…from the year the PDF was introduced in 1991.

University of Manitoba Press shares books, catalogs, and book launch photos from the 48 years UMP has been publishing.

University of Washington Press celebrates their centennial by featuring highlights and photos from 100 years of UW Press history.

Duke University Press brings us a special throwback to all of their surprising journal covers.

University of Texas Press offers a look back on the street style of 1970s Pennsylvania through the lens of seminal street photographer Mark Cohen.

University of Michigan Press describes the evolution of their book, “Michigan Trees” through the more than 100 years the publication has been maintained and edited, with a screen shot of the original cover.

University Press of Kansas takes a trip through their list via a “Today in History” theme.

Minnesota Historical Society Press shares Mike Evangelist’s Downtown: Minneapolis in the 1970s, which captures a memorable time and place in the past.

University of California Press remembers their Autobiography of Mark Twain, Vol. 1 publication in 2010: A media cause célèbre.

University of Toronto Press highlights the various cover designs their journals have had over the years (some journals have been publishing for hundreds of years, so expect some interesting ones!)

Fordham University Press features What Might Have Been… A trip through New York City’s Unbuilt Subway System.

University Press Week Blog Tour: What’s Surprising? #ReadUp

UpWeekThis week, Princeton University Press will be participating in the University Press Week blog tour. Stay tuned for our featured post on Wednesday from our Design department on the launch of an exciting new social media initiative.

Today, in keeping with the online gallery theme, check out posts from other university presses on what projects they’ve found particularly surprising. Our own biggest surprise of the year is a foray into children’s literature with the 150th anniversary edition of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, including illustrations by Salvador Dalí. You can read more about that at the online gallery, and on the PUP blog later this week.

So, what’s surprising in university press publishing this year? #ReadUp!

  • University Press of Florida blogs recipes and photos from recent UPF cookbooks that have changed how people view the Sunshine State, highlighting a thriving food scene that has often gone unnoticed amid the state’s highly-publicized beaches and theme parks.
  • University Press of New England reflects on the unusual success of a book from their trade imprint, ForeEdge. The book is titled Winning Marriage by Marc Solomon, and traces the years-long, state-by-state legal battle for marriage equality in America. Surprises came in many forms: from the serendipitous timing of the book’s publication with the Supreme Court ruling to the book’s ability to resonate with general readers and legal scholars alike—and many others surprises in between.
  • University Press of Mississippi, Steve Yates, marketing director, describes how the Press has partnered with Lemuria Books in Jackson and writers across the state to create the Mississippi Books page at the Clarion Ledger.
  • University Press of Kentucky features a pop quiz of some surprising facts about AAUP Member Presses.
  • University of California Press will discuss their Luminos and Collabra OA publishing platforms.
  • University of Wisconsin Press writes about how mystery fiction is a surprise hit, and a surprisingly good fit for their publishing program. Their sleuths in several series include a duo of globe-trotting art history experts, a Wisconsin sheriff in a favorite tourist destination, a gay literature professor, and a tough detective who quotes Shakespeare and Melville.
  • The University of Nebraska Press is more than their books! Find out about the UNP staff and who they are.
  • And check out surprise posts from University of Michigan and University Press of Kansas as well.


Get Ready for University Press Week! #UPWeek


This week we’re putting Bird Fact Friday on hold as we prepare for University Press Week, an annual event when we celebrate the many contributions that university presses make to academia and an informed society.

#UPWeek began in 1978 with President Jimmy Carter, “in recognition of the impact, both here and abroad, of American university presses on culture and scholarship.” Today that influence is stronger than ever as university presses expand their publishing programs, take advantage of the opportunities afforded by a more global society, and explore new ways to bring valuable content to readers. This helpful infographic designed by our own Jessica Massabrook summarizes a great deal of fascinating information about this segment of the publishing industry.

Here at PUP, we have some great things planned!

Our contribution to the #UPWeek blog tour will come on Wednesday, November 11 and will focus on UP Design. Chris Lapinksi will be announcing an exciting new social media development in PUP’s design department.

Other special features include:

Kellie Rendina, from Advertising, will post on children’s literature for adults, with a focus on Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. Check out the AAUP’s online gallery of featured titles from various university presses for more information on this and other surprising offerings!


Peter Dougherty, Director of PUP, will talk about what’s new at PUP, particularly how we’re using technology to reach our readers.

In addition, each day we’ll be bringing together daily round ups of all the great posts from our fellow university presses.


How can you get involved? Easy! Sign up to attend the November 10th online session entitled Opening Access: The Reinvention of the Academic Book and the November 13 online session called It’s Not Scary: The Art of Getting Published with a Scholarly Press. You can also check this map to find your local university presses. Follow them on social media, using the hashtag #ReadUP to join the conversation, and check their blogs for exciting new content as we celebrate academic publishing together.

#AAUPWeek Seminar: Collaboration in Scholarly Publishing


About this program:

Collaborations spearheaded by university and academic presses with research libraries, scholars, and other universities around the world are a vital part of publishing today. It is these alliances that keep university presses at the forefront of literature, theory, research, and ideas, making them stewards of modern thought.

In this discussion, Jennifer Howard from The Chronicle of Higher Education is joined by three panelists who have spearheaded innovative collaborations that cross the boundaries of nations, institutions, and disciplines: Barbara Kline Pope, Executive Director for Communications at National Academies Press and also President of the AAUP, Peter Dougherty, Director of Princeton University Press, and Ron Chrisman, director of the University of North Texas Press.

The projects to be discussed are:
• Princeton University Press and Caltech’s Einstein Papers Project provides the first complete picture of Albert Einstein’s massive written legacy.
• National Academy Press’s Academy Scope is a visualization of all of the titles that are available on, allowing readers to browse through the reports of the National Academies by topic area and seeing relationships between titles.
• University of North Texas Press teams up with the University of North Texas Sub-Antarctic Biocultural Conservation Program and the University of Magallanes in Chile to introduce Magellanic Sub-Antarctic Ornithology.  This project is the result of a decade of research conducted by scientist associated with the Omora Ethnobotanical Park in the Cape Horn Biosphere Reserve in Chile.

University Press Week is next week! #UPWeek

Monday is the start of University Press Week! Join us as we highlight the extraordinary work of nonprofit scholarly publishers and their many contributions to culture, the academy, and an informed society.

What is #UPWeek you ask?

In the summer of 1978, President Jimmy Carter proclaimed a University Press Week “in recognition of the impact, both here and abroad, of American university presses on culture and scholarship.” That influence continues today, as does the increasing vitality of university press publishing programs, the many ways and means by which works are now produced and distributed, and the urgent need for articulate discourse in times pervaded by sound bites. Pretty cool, huh?

This year, we have a lot to celebrate.

All week long, 31 different university presses will be bringing you the latest and greatest news, including what’s trending in their offices, on their shelves, and in their plans for the future. Every day, tune in here for a new roundup of posts from university presses. We’ll visit MIT on out to the University of Washington, with many stops in between. This year’s topics include:

upress week topics

We begin the week with a look at what’s new in press collaboration, and then we’ll give you an inside look at our presses. Can you spot university presses in pop culture? Just you wait — on Wednesday, we’ll provide the latest scoop. Then on Thursday, we take a look back at some terrific projects that have put university presses on the map. On Friday, we’ll recommend some topics and authors for you to follow — in addition to a discussion of social media.

Gearing Up

So what can you do to prep for a week of enlightening posts and great conversations? Check out this map of university presses to find which is closest to you. When it comes to university presses, you’re among friends — lots of them. The AAUP has over 130 members, all sharing a common commitment to scholarship, the academy, and society.

See you back here on Monday!

Upress week

common commitments to scholarship, the academy, and society – See more at:
common commitments to scholarship, the academy, and society – See more at:
common commitments to scholarship, the academy, and society – See more at:

Game of Tongues — PUP Director Peter Dougherty Reflects on the Importance of Translations (#UPWeek)

University Press Week Logo

This post is presented as part of the University Press Week Blog Tour. November 11-15 is set aside as a week to celebrate the myriad ways university presses contribute to scholarly communication and society at large. Please support our colleagues by exploring more posts in the tour via the links below. For a complete schedule, click here.



If you want to get a great sense of the global reach of the university press and, not incidentally, of the potential of forthcoming publications, you could do worse than observing a few days’ worth of foreign rights meetings at the Frankfurt Book Fair.

Perched in a folding chair at a card table in the Princeton University Press booth last month, I watched my colleague Kim Williams, PUP’s foreign rights manager (who operates from our office in Oxfordshire), hold 80 meetings with nearly 200 publishers from 22 countries, representing 17 languages around the world. Meetings such as Kim’s–going on eight frenetic, exhausting hours a day over the five-day forced march of Frankfurt–comprise the annual ritual wherein the world decides which books and which ideas get dispersed across nations. The word “dissemination” is sometimes used to characterize the mission of university presses. Frankfurt is an example of dissemination of the highest, most sophisticated, most intricately orchestrated kind.

Pitching our books to Chinese publishers at #fbf13 - cheers to Cheers Publishing!

Pitching our books to Chinese publishers at #fbf13 – cheers to Cheers Publishing! (credit: @PUP_Rights)

Not only geography, but history matters in the annual translation transaction Olympiad. Kim Williams knows her counterparts at the foreign publishers and has worked with many of them for years. She knows their tastes, interests, and strengths. The experience she brings to the task and the development of these relationships, invest her exchanges with insight and efficiency, providing a kind of multicultural shorthand for conducting the world’s book business.

And the game of tongues matters. Over the past ten years the number of Princeton’s translation licenses has nearly tripled. Rights deals in Chinese over this period have increased almost tenfold, translations into Japanese have almost tripled, and Korean rights deals have also increased dramatically. And this growth is not limited to Asian markets. We’ve seen equally strong growth in the number of Turkish, Czech, Brazilian Portuguese, and Spanish translations, among others. Taken all together this increased activity reflects changes in international economic development and national cultural priorities. This upward trend in translation activity will only increase as economic development rises. It would be interesting to know how many of our translated titles win awards and other accolades in their adopted languages.

And much as the annual idea-swap in Frankfurt provides us with a window on the world, it also tells us a lot about ourselves. From a distance, it tells us which subjects “travel” well, yielding valuable insights into list-planning and therefore into editorial acquisitions. From a closer standpoint, it provides a powerfully compelling preview of how a publisher’s upcoming list is likely to perform. If three dozen foreign publishers are panting over a particular title, chances are you’ve got a winner in English as well as around the world in other language markets.

Finally, a week at a rights table in Frankfurt gives a publisher a glimpse into its soul. Just how good are we? Are certain lists as strong as we think they are? Are we current or are we yesterday’s news? Do our lists have the three Ds–depth, dimension, and durability–or are we publishing mere ephemera? The five-day stress test in front of the world’s hard-bitten foreign publishers answers those questions, sometimes painfully, other times reassuringly.

As the global university press evolves, table talk in Frankfurt will continue to serve as a vital indicator of our impact around the world and our insight into ourselves.

Peter J. Dougherty
Princeton University Press


Click through to check out the covers of various On Bullshit translations.

For more information about Princeton University Press’s foreign rights program, please visit

No Matter How You Say It — It’s Still “On Bullshit” — books in translation for #UPWeek

Peter Dougherty’s consideration of the impact of translations for university presses is available here. One of the best parts of getting our books into translation, is seeing what the foreign publishers do with the cover, title, and design. This poster illustrates a few interpretations of the NY Times best-seller On Bullshit by Harry G. Frankfurt. On Bullshit is one of our success stories. It has been published in more than 25 languages.


#UPWeek Blog Tour turns its attention to the importance of regional publishing on Day 4

upweekUniversity Presses make tremendous scholarly contributions, but they also operate as local publishers, publishing the best regional books for their respective states. These books can be anything from cookbooks to walking tours, narrative histories to pop culture and art coffee table books. It may be tempting to write off this portion of our publishing programs as frivolous, but as the blog tour stops demonstrate today, this would be a big mistake.

Fordham University Press

Fredric Nachbaur, Press Director, writes about establishing the Empires State Editions imprint to better brand and market the regional books, reflect the mission of the university, and co-publish books with local institutions.

Louisiana State University Press
LSU Press discusses the challenges they face in capturing an authentic representation of Louisiana’s culture. How do the editors work with authors to capture the nuances of Louisiana’s food, music, and art?
Syracuse University Press

Regional author, Chuck D’Imperio discusses the roots of regional writing in many of the “classics.” From oral testimonies to local guidebooks, these stories contribute to the culture and history of the region.

University of Alabama Press
University of Nebraska Press

UNP’s Editor-in-Chief Derek Krissoff defines the meaning of place in University Press publishing.

University of North Carolina Press

UNC Press editorial director Mark Simpson-Vos highlights the special value of regional university press
publishing at a time when the scale for so much of what we do emphasizes the global.

University Press of Kentucky
UPK considers its role in preserving Kentucky’s cultural heritage and some of the fun things that make KY (and KY books) unique.
University Press of Mississippi

UPM Marketing Manager and author of two books Steve Yates gives his thoughts on the scale of regional publishing and shares the sage advice of businessmen

Oregon State University Press
A great quick intro to regional publishing and highlights from OSU Press’s regional catalog.

The complete schedule for the blog tour is located here.

Day 3 of the #UPWeek Blog Tour focuses on specialty subjects from some of our colleagues

upweekFor Day 3 of the University Press Week Blog Tour, we turn our attention to the content–the subjects of the books, journals, series, and everything else–we publish. This is an opportunity for presses to highlight special subject areas in which they publish, or subjects for which their press is particularly well known.

MIT Press

Gita Manaktala, Editorial Director, writes about the possibilities of the web. MIT Press authors are increasingly using the internet for scholarship, finding newly mediated ways to teach, to conduct research, to present data, and to engage with various publics.

Texas A&M University Press
University of Georgia Press
Nik Heynen, Deborah Cowen, and Melissa W. Wright, series co-editors, will discuss UGA Press geography books, specifically as they relate to the Geographies of Justice and Social Transformation series.
University of Pennsylvania Press

Penn Press acquisitions editors discuss the foundations and future of some of the press’s key subject areas.

University of Toronto Press

A discussion of the Medieval and Renaissance Studies lists.

Wilfrid Laurier University Press

Cheryl Lousley, editor of the Environmental Humanities series, writes about the engagement of environmental issues through the humanities disciplines, such as literature, film, and media studies, for example. She outlines the genesis of the series and discusses some of the most recent publications.

The complete schedule for the blog tour is located here.

Day 2 of the #UPWeek Blog Tour is underway with posts on the future of scholarly communication

upweekThe focus of Day 2 of the University Press Week Blog Tour is “The Future of Scholarly Communications”. University Presses are engaged in a wide variety of new initiatives designed to acquire and publish meaningful scholarship in new and innovative ways and in partnerships with libraries, organizations, and other groups with vested interests in this area of what we do. Today we celebrate a few of these initiatives and take a peek at what the future holds for us all.

Duke University Press
Priscilla Wald, Professor of English and Women’s Studies at Duke University, on the slow future of scholarly communication.
Harvard University Press
Jeffrey Schnapp, faculty director of metaLAB (at) Harvard and editor of the new metaLABprojects book series, on the emerging currents of experimental scholarship for which the series provides a platform.
Stanford University Press

Alan Harvey, Press Director, discusses the challenges presented by new technologies in publishing, and how the industry model is adapting to new reading-consumption habits.

Temple University Press

Alex Holzman explores the partnerships university presses and libraries can forge as the means of communicating scholarship evolves.

University of Minnesota Press
Editor Dani Kasprzak describes a new UMP initiative.
University of Texas Press

Robert Devens, Assistant Editor-in-Chief for the University of Texas Press, on the future of scholarly communication.

University of Virginia Press

Historian Holly Shulman, editor of The Dolley Madison Digital Edition and the forthcoming People of the Founding Era, looks at the need for university presses to adapt to new technologies, while ackowledging the difficulties of doing so.

The complete schedule for the blog tour is located here.

Free #UPWeek event “Innovation in Scholarly Publishing”

upweekAs part of the celebration of University Press Week, Association of American University Presses is hosting a free online program “Innovation in Scholarly Publishing”, November 15 at 2:30 PM:

Join speakers *William Germano*, Dean of Cooper Union, author, and former Editor in Chief of Columbia University Press, *Kathleen Fitzpatrick*, Director of Scholarly Communication at the Modern Language Association, and *Gita Manaktala*, Editorial Director at The MIT Press and moderator *Carlin Romano*, Critic-at-Large of/The Chronicle of Higher Education/, former President of the National Book Critics Circle, and a Guggenheim Fellow, for a discussion of the implications of recent technological and cultural shifts for the work of AAUP members and their authors.

More information and RSVP:

Don’t forget that the University Press Week Blog Tour starts on Monday, November 11! Complete schedule is available here. Princeton University Press will contribute to the tour on Friday.