John William Corrington: The Publishing Industry’s Nostradamus?

John William Corrington passed away in 1988, but many of his philosophies and opinions still ring true today.

He had a keen eye for industry and business, specifically the writing business. In his lecture, “The Mystery of Writing,” he points out the contradictions that plague every writer’s existence: “… there was an inverse proportion between the amount of money a man could make and the quality of his writing. If you wanted to make a lot of money, you wrote crap.” Some would say this is still the case today. , While I will not venture to point out those bestsellers that perfectly fit this model, simply seeing the horde of novels with the word “Girl” in the title is evidence enough.

If it’s not broke, don’t fix it. It makes sense, but when considering creative works, using this formulaic model comes with consequences. One of these consequences is the category-specific saturation of certain markets. You can’t throw a stone in a bookstore without hitting a fad, be it vampires, zombies, etc. (Please don’t throw stones in bookstores. You may be asked to leave.) These fads are not unique to literature. We see them in all media, especially movies. And when something doesn’t work, go back to the last thing that did. This would explain all of the questionable superhero remakes and remixes. Apparently, this problem has been around for a while. Corrington referred to “copy-cats” in his speech, somberly stating, “I think it is safe to say no American publisher would risk three dollars and ninety-five cents in the name of American literature.” Trade publishers are more likely to publish a work that has been done nine ways to Sunday than take a chance on a piece of literature that may not sell. It is smart business, but it is also a culture killer, silencing new, unique voices in favor of blockbusters and one-hit wonders. But challenges such as these often lead to change.

The publishing industry is evolving, thanks to innovations, especially in technology. A book that was once a Christmas gift for family and friends can become the next international bestseller. Household names are now competing side-by-side with midnight warriors who, after slugging through their workdays, peck away at keyboards late at night while the kids sleep. I like to think Corrington would be encouraged with this change. Though the publishing industry, as with all sectors of life and business, has its faults and its crutches, the writers, the creators, the world-builders, the dreamers have never had it so good.


For more insights from Corrington, be sure to check out

The Southern Philosopher: Collected Essays of John William Corrington

Coming next month on July 18th!

June is Audiobook Appreciation Month


Attention all readers, June is audiobook appreciation month. The month where you can shamelessly (and simply) press play and let your ears and mind wander. Celebrate by giving your eyes a rest and allow a narrator to guide you through the trials and tribulations of a story-line.

We love books in all of their forms. However, there is something fascinating about unwinding with an audiobook. To celebrate this glorious month, we wanted to share three reasons the staff at the UNG Press loves audiobooks.

Audiobooks are perfect for all types of listeners.

Audiobooks are popular because of the ease that comes with listening to them. One can immerse themselves in an adventurous plot while exercising or be inspired with a life lesson while on their morning commute. The possibilities are endless. However, Statista (2017) has found that “some 28 percent of consumers listen to audiobooks most often on a desktop or laptop.” This statistic sheds light on another way consumers can enjoy audiobooks. Instead of flicking on the television, let the spoken word and your imagination inspire.

There are so many options to choose from – and the list is growing!

It can sometimes be exhausting searching through aisles hoping to find a title that speaks to you. It can become overwhelming and eventually feel as though you are alone. However, the audiobook industry is growing – and fast. In 2016, Good-E-Reader stated, “The Audio Publishers of America has stated that every year for the past three years 36,000 audiobooks were issued.” With the growing number of audiobooks, a reader could never feel alone. There will always be a book for every reader.

You can share the book with others.

 The traditional way to read a book can sometimes be lonely with you being the sole navigator through a strange new world. One of the major benefits of audiobooks is their ability to be shared with others. Listen to a story with others, have a meaningful discussion, be inspired by how various listeners interpreted the meaning of the work.

If you are looking for a platform to find great audiobooks at a small cost, we recommend Audible. At the moment, Audible is offering a free 30 day trial and if you enjoy their service, it is only $14.95 per month.

Audiobooks are a great way to be inspired while navigating through a busy, chaotic world. This June, start an audiobook and leave a comment about which audiobook you chose and how it made you feel. Happy listening!

New Intern Spotlight: Cullen Ormond

Hello! I am Cullen Ormond, the summer marketing intern at The University of North Georgia Press. I am a recent graduate from Georgia College & State University in Milledgeville, Georgia. I graduated with an undergraduate degree in Mass Communication with a concentration in journalism.

Voltaire once said, “Let us read, and let us dance; these two amusements will never do any harm to the world.” Reading has always been fundamental to my personal growth. The authors I cherish have become significant figures in my life; F. Scott Fitzgerald will forever be one of my greatest friends. I love to learn about different cultures, however, travel is sometimes expensive. So, I find refuge in the novels that surround me and entrust them to provide an outlet to be immersed in different worlds. The degree I earned from my university and my undying adulation for words led me to the internship at the UNG Press.

I am anxious to apply the skills I learned throughout my undergraduate degree and see them in practice. It will be interesting to learn how the publishing world functions and flourishes.


BookExpo America 2017

As technology advances and the world becomes seemingly more digital, the publishing industry must adapt in order to survive and flourish. BookExpo America, a three-day conference, seeks to engage and inform its attendees of changes in the market while cultivating relationships among publishers.

The 2017 BookExpo took place on May 31 to June 2 at the Javits Center in New York City. The conference provided several opportunities for publishers and book-worms alike to learn, ranging from Global Marketing Forums (GMFs) to autograph sessions to even author breakfasts. The conference offered many occasions to explore all things books!

“BookExpo is evolving to lead the global publishing industry to its consumer driven future and celebrate storytelling in all its forms,” was one of the goals of the conference stated on BookExpo’s website.

One of the special events at the conference were the author breakfasts, where publishers and readers were able to sit in a breakfast-like setting with some of the world’s most influential writers. On Thursday, Whitney Cummings hosted a breakfast session in which authors such as Stephen and Owen King and Claire Messud were interviewed. On Friday, Savannah Guthrie hosted a session in which authors such as Jason Reynolds and Jennifer Weiner were interviewed.

Another special event hosted at the conference was the Global Marketing Forum (GMF) which “addresses the diverse topics and relevant issues that define the new publishing industry.”

Some of the team at the University of North Georgia Press were fortunate enough to attend this year’s conference and bring information important for the UNGP’s growth.

“The publishing industry is changing, and it is important for those of us at UNGP to stay knowledgeable of these changes,” said Corey Parson, managing editor at UNGP. “BookExpo is a great place to learn about new tech and trends and share notes with others in the industry.”

For more information regarding BookExpo America, please visit their website.



Freedom Isn’t Free

Memorial Day. A day set aside to honor and remember those who put their lives on the line to protect and uphold our freedoms and liberties granted to us in the constitution. Even though this is an extremely important cause, not many people know when or how this day got started.

Toward the end of the Civil War in the early 1860s, people started decorating the graves of their family and friends who had died in battle. Many cities claim to be the birthplace of Memorial Day, originally called Declaration Day but In Waterloo, NY, in 1866, was deemed with this title when drugstore owner Henry Welles convinced the rest of the town to close all of the shops on May 5 to commemorate the soldiers from the Civil War laid at rest at the Waterloo Cemetery.

In 1882, Declaration Day was changed to Memorial Day and by the end of World War I the day memorialized those lost in line of military service. Congress passed the Uniform Monday Holiday Act in 1968 which took effect in 1971, moving Memorial Day from May 30th to be celebrated on the last Monday in May.

Memorial Day is an important day in American history, and it reminds us of the love and sacrifice for Freedom.

Here, at the University of North Georgia, the military college of Georgia, we have our own history of remembering those lost. UNG’s Dahlonega campus has a memorial wall that honors former students who were killed in the service of our country during time of war. Recently, the UNG community suffered a great loss of a young alum (Class of 2014), 1st LT Weston Lee (25), on Saturday, April 29, in Mosul, Iraq after sustaining injuries from an IED detonation. Weston’s name will be added to our memorial wall, but his name and sacrifice is engraved in the hearts and minds in the UNG community. Weston is the eighth UNG graduate lost since 9/11. Though we wished we had no need for such a wall, UNG sends our thanks and condolences out to the families who have had their son or daughter give the ultimate sacrifice. We hope that you take a moment to remember the fallen as we remember their sacrifice.

If you have further interest in memorializing Weston, Colin Marney and Nick Shaw, fraternity brothers of Weston’s, started a Go Fund Me account to solicit donations to establish a scholarship fund in Lee’s memory; additional proceeds will go to Lee’s family. UNG has also set up the 1LT Weston Lee Memorial Scholarship Fund donations page.