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Publishing Symposium 1/15/15

Publishing Without Perishing

A One-Day Symposium for Scholars on Academic Book Publishing

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Presented by RIT Press and The Wallace Center
CIMS, Room 2230/2240
(Louise Slaughter Hall)

A one-day symposium featuring book publishing experts with abundant opportunities for engagement, interaction and information to craft a book proposal and manuscript.

Focusing on academic book publishing, the symposium is intended for authors or prospective authors of scholarly books. Presentations and discussion topics include creating a persuasive “pitch” for university presses, developing and marketing books for niche audiences, delivering and consuming digital books, and considering options outside of traditional, mainstream publishing.

Click here to Register - Deadline for registration is Friday, January 9, 2015 at 5:00 p.m.


8 – 9 a.m. Registration and continental breakfast
9:00 a.m. Welcome
Dr. Lynn Wild, Associate Provost for Faculty Career Development and The Wallace Center
9:15 a.m. Behind the Spine: University Press Editors
Molly Cort, RIT Press
Suzanne E. Guiod, Syracuse University Press
Julie Haenisch, Princeton University Press
Michael J. McGandy, Cornell University Press
Moderator: Kelly Norris Martin, RIT School of Communication
10:30 a.m. Coffee break
11:00 a.m. Professor Rachel Toor, “On Thinking Well and Writing Well: How Smart Academics Write for Publication”
Noon-1:15 p.m. Buffet Luncheon
1:30 p.m. The Digital World of Publishing
Christine Heusner, RIT School of Media Sciences
Michael Riordan, RIT School of Media Sciences
Marnie Soom, RIT Press
Moderator: Clarence B. Sheffield, Jr., RIT College of Imaging Arts and Sciences
1:30 p.m. Self-Publishing: Wonders and Woes of DIY
Kathy Johncox, National Technical Institute for the Deaf
J. Andrew Cooney, Jr., ColorCentric
Marci Diehl, President,
John M. Lacagnina, SoftPrint Holdings
Moderator: Amelia J. Hugill-Fontanel, RIT Cary Graphic Arts Collection
2:45 p.m. Social hour

J. Andrew Cooney, Jr. is co-founder of SoftPrint Holdings, Inc. (parent company to prInternet and ColorCentric Corporation) and currently serves as Vice President of Marketing and Sales, overseeing new business development. Mr. Cooney has been in the Print-On-Demand industry since 1996, first with Corporate Document Solutions (a Division of Kinko’s, at the time) and the past 12 years at ColorCentric Corporation. Mr. Cooney holds an BS and MBA from the Rochester Institute of Technology and is a member of the Executive Board of RIT’s Nathaniel Rochester Society.


Molly Cort is Managing Editor of RIT Press and oversees all the editorial and production aspects of publishing, including content management of an international online journal. Prior to joining RIT Press, she was production manager at the University of Rochester Press.


Marci Diehl is a multi-media writer, editor and producer for marketing and magazines at She’s a founder of Merge Publishing, a collaborative independent publisher of fiction, and has a debut novel, What You Don’t Know Now. Keep up with her on Twitter as @writerdiehl and on Facebook as Marci Diehl Books.


Suzanne E. Guiod is Editor-in-Chief of Syracuse University Press. Previously, she served as editorial director at the University of Rochester Press, Northeast publisher for Arcadia Publishing, and managing editor of the Encyclopedia of New England (Yale University Press, 2005).


Julie Haenisch, an RIT graduate who majored in Professional & Technical Communication, also attended New York University’s Publishing Institute. In New York, she worked for the advertising firm of Katz, Dochtermann & Epstein and began her publishing career at Smallwood and Stewart, a book packager. She is Senior Text Promotion Manager at Princeton University Press, managing course adoption promotion for textbooks, academic trade titles and paperbacks. For more than 18 years, her marketing campaigns have reached more than 150,000 faculty annually, bringing important scholarship to academic institutions globally.


Christine Heusner is currently a Lecturer in the School of Media Sciences at RIT and the Graduate Director of the MS-Print Media program. She teaches courses in photography, imaging workflows, retouching, publication app design, typography and page design. She is an exhibiting artist and her digital and photographic work has been shown internationally in public exhibitions. Prior to RIT, she worked in photographic studios specializing in commercial and portrait photography, design and fine-art printing.


Amelia J. Hugill-Fontanel is associate curator at the Cary Graphic Arts Collection at Rochester Institute of Technology, a world-renowned library on the history of printing, publishing, and design. She is an art historian and editor who has contributed to numerous publications about Cary Collection holdings, including those about graphic design, calligraphy, wood type, and typefounding. Amelia is also a letterpress printer and a trustee of the American Printing History Association.


Kathy Johncox is Assistant Director, Communications, Marketing & Multimedia Services at the National Technical Institute for the Deaf and worked previously as marketing communications director for a local non-profit. Her short stories have been published regionally and she is author of The Last Generation of Women Who Cook (CreateSpace, 2012) and What A Kiss Can Do (CreateSpace, 2014).


John M. Lacagnina is founder and President & CEO of SoftPrint Holdings (parent company to prInternet and ColorCentric Corporation), a leading provider of a digital printing operating system and digital production system that enables its customers to deliver over 3000 different printed products from their unique content in a quantity of one under their brand. Mr. Lacagnina graduated with a BS degree in Electrical Engineering, Cum laude, from Rochester Institute of Technology, where he served on the Board of Trustees from 1986-1995, and was president of the 85,000 member National Alumni Association. Mr. Lacagnina currently serves on the boards of other high-technology companies and has presented at many international conferences on document management and demand printing technologies. Mr. Lacagnina is a Board member of the newly formed Cross-Media Innovation Center at Rochester Institute of Technology.


Kelly Norris Martin, Ph.D., is an Assistant Professor in the School of Communication at RIT. Her current research advocates for discipline-specific visual communication instruction. She and Ben Zwickl (RIT Physics) were recently awarded an NSF grant to examine the transfer of math, physics and communication skills of recent college graduates into the photonics workforce.


Michael J. McGandy is Senior Editor with Cornell University Press. He sponsors books in American history, politics and urban studies, and he also has a list of academic trade and trade books on regional topics related to New York City and State.


Michael Riordan is a long-standing faculty member at RIT’s School of Media Sciences where he teaches coursework focused on publishing, production and media architecture. His research is focused on developing broad-impact and sustainable publishing solutions. Much of this work has come out of RIT’s Open Publishing Lab, a cross-disciplinary lab that brings together students, faculty, and staff to create and distribute open-source, next-generation publishing solutions.


Clarence B. Sheffield, Jr. is the Eugene H. Fram Chair in Applied Critical Thinking at RIT. He was trained as a modernist at Bryn Mawr, with a particular interest in the theory, criticism and history of visual and material culture. His field of special scholarly expertise is Scandinavian Modernism--very broadly construed to include art, architecture, design and literature.  He is an associate professor in RIT¹s College of Imaging Arts and Sciences.


Marnie Soom is Design and Marketing Specialist at RIT Press, a position she has held since 2005. In addition to designing 4-6 printed books per year, she oversees ebook file production and distribution. She has a B.F.A. in Graphic Design and M.S. in Print Media, both from RIT.


Rachel Toor is currently associate professor of Creative Writing at the Inland Northwest Center for Writers in Spokane, the graduate writing program of Eastern Washington University. After a dozen years as an editor of scholarly books, at Oxford and Duke University Presses, she slid down the ladder of social mobility and did a stint in college admissions, quitting to write Admissions Confidential: An Insider’s Account of the Elite College Selection Process (St. Martin’s, 2001) in an attempt to demystify an arcane and brutalizing rite of passage. Since then she has published a memoir, The Pig and I (Penguin, 2005; Bison Books, 2009) and Personal Record: A Love Affair with Running (University of Nebraska Press, 2008). Rachel writes a monthly column in The Chronicle of Higher Education and a bi-monthly one in Running Times magazine, where she is a senior writer. Her work has appeared in various and diverse places, including The New York Times, The LA Times, Ploughshares, Glamour, Inside Higher Ed, Reader’s Digest, Runner’s World, Ascent, JAMA (The Journal of the American Medical Association) and variety of other more academically-oriented publications. Her work also appears on the Athleta blog, where she was a sponsored athlete for 2012. In June, 2014, Farrar, Straus and Giroux published her first novel, On the Road to Find Out.