Thinking and walking is what I have been doing…
To stay sane over the last 16 months, I started walking every day. Our house sits on one of the walking trails in southwest Portland and, not far, there is a small park that contains a tree-filled ravine. Round trip, the walk is about one and a quarter miles along a hilly path. Most days, someone joins me. Some days, I walk alone. Some Saturdays, we’d get ambitious. One weekend, it was a drive out to Klickitat Trail in Washington. A few weeks ago, we left early in the morning to explore Ecola State Park on the Oregon coast during one of the lowest tides of the year. All the walks made the world seem a little bigger.
As the current shift in the US around COVID, I have labored to keep the walking habit and get out even more. There is a larger network of urban trails that run through our city quadrant. The trails connect parks, paths through side yards, and neighborhood streets. The trails are marked with brown signs with a hiker and the trail number. You see them sometimes if you pay close attention driving through a neighborhood or walking through a larger park.
I decided to walk all of the SW Trails this summer. My son Zach took up the challenge with me. They range between 4 and 10 miles in length with 500 to 1000 feet of elevation change.
We walked on Saturday mornings when it is cool and the sun is low in the sky. We run into people on various sections of hikes but we have yet to cross paths with someone truly hiking the trail we are on. So far, we’ve walked Trails 3, 4, 5, and 7. Trail 1 is next and we’ll end with Trail 6 that runs from Goose Hollow in downtown Portland, south 10.6 miles, to Lake Oswego.
Changes at Bard Press
There has been a lot going on behind the scenes at Bard Press over the last several months. It was the kind of work that was interesting and important but couldn’t talk about publicly until recently.
The first piece was our decision to move our sales and distribution to Two Rivers, a part of Ingram Publisher Services, the second largest book distributor in the US. We’ll be distributed alongside Harvard Business Review Press, Plata Publishing, the publisher of Rich Dad, Poor Dad, The New Press, Spiegel & Grau, and Molly Stern’s new publishing house Zando.
We have also been working on the future of Bard Press itself. In addition to my current role as publisher, I will become the owner and operator of Bard Press in September. We’ll continue to work with all the authors that we have published over the last 25 years and explore new ways to expand the reach of our amazing backlist. I will be announcing new projects in these coming months with our existing authors and new authors to our publishing house.
I am so happy to have reached this point and feel honored to have the opportunity to continue the tradition of publishing amazing books at Bard Press.
2021 Mid-Year Business Book Publishing Review
I mentioned before that most of my writing on book publishing takes place over on the Bard Press website now. Since my last newsletter, I have posted a 2021 Mid-Year Review for the world of business book publishing.
- This year has been a good one for book publishing, with the industry up 21% year-to-date.
- Atomic Habits by James Clear is the fastest book to reach a million copies in print sales.
- Adam Grant’s Think Again is the breakout business book of 2021, with over 200K copies sold.
- Jon Gordon, the author of over twenty five books, managed publish FOUR more in the last 12 months.
- If you wanted to read books about Amazon, rather than buy books from Amazon, there has never been a better time. I count six new books published in the last six months.
- And four books you might have missed – the new and expanded edition of Robert Cialdini’s Influence, the hardcover edition of The Psychology of Money, The Scout Mindset, and Ask Iwata, the collected writings of the former CEO of Nintendo.
The more detailed version is posted on the Bard Press website.
- Watched the Season One of For All Mankind on Apple TV. I don’t know why this show isn’t getting more love. Ronald Moore, of Battlestar Galactica fame, is helming the series and it is a historical reimagining of the Space Race. So good. We are starting Season Two and reports are that a third season has been ordered.
- We have also been watching Marvel on Disney+. I feel like each series has been better than the prior one. Loki has been my favorite so far.
FalconCaptain America and the Winter Soldier was really good and pushed hard on race like nothing before in the MCU. WandaVision was just OK for me, with the rolling sitcom treatment. Last weekend, we watched Black Widow through their Premier Access. The movie was good with its focus on “family” and gave more insight into what made Natasha a complicated character, both morally and with her fame as an Avenger.
- I also want to share some love for Raya and the Last Dragon from Disney and Shadow and Bone on Netflix. I have also enjoyed The Playbook on Netflix, which interviews successful sport coaches about the work they do to prepare their players for games.
- There are SO many books in my To Read pile. I have almost 40 books that I purchased and another 15 books that are checked out from the library. It’s so bad that I have started a list of “Books I Will Not Read in 2021.” My Not To Read list is a nod to the fact that many of these books caught my attention and I need to record them somewhere, while acknowledging there is no way I will get through all of them.
- Right now, I am reading The Bhagavad Gita, Leadership On The Line by Ronald Heifetz and Marty Linksky and just started Michael Lewis’ pandemic book The Premonition.
- My music playlist has been all over the place lately. New releases I would point you toward would be Summer Bird by The National Parks, Nathan Evans’ version of Wellerman (the TikTok remix is amazing), and If Ever by Paula Fuga with Jack Johnson and Ben Harper.
More soon. Take care of yourselves. -T