These are "Reports from the Newsstand," my comments on the publications in our catalogue at We offer sample copies of our publications, not subscriptions. Each sample copy costs $2.59, well below newsstand cover prices (if the publication is available on your newsstand at all). A $2.00 shipping charge is added to each order. Publishers use to get their publications into the hands of potential subscribers.


Ed Rust, proprietor of, has worked in publishing in a variety of capacities for decades. He started as U.S. circulation director of the Financial Times "way back when they flew the papers into Kennedy Airport from London a day late." He most recently was managing editor of publications at the General Society, Sons of the Revolution.

Thursday, February 16, 2006


New to the newsstand today is Children's Book Insider, a monthly newsletter for writers of children's books, a highly competitive and potentially lucrative occupation. I've got the January issue here in the newsstand. The first couple of pages of this eight-page publication are devoted to news of publishers looking for manuscripts and announcements of writing workshops and conferences in various parts of the country. The rest of the Children's Book Insider, which is published in Ft. Collins, CO, contains short articles of advice from experts on getting your book written and sold. One example is a nifty article on writing dialogue, in which author Gail Martini-Peterson bluntly warns that "actual dialogue bores the reader," being filled with hems, haws and idle, irrelevant chatter. She shows how dialogue should always advance the plot, should be broken up with action and scene description, and, interestingly, "should never be an information drop." The centerfold of the January issue is a good discussion of the benefits of becoming a book reviewer (besides possibly getting free books), and it's applicable advice for all sorts of writers. Author Mary Bowman-Kruhm notes that opportunities to review books for children are much greater now with the advent of the Internet, and argues persuasively that the effort and discipline of critically analyzing a newly published book can help you better understand how to structure and write your own saleable manuscripts in that field. Another winner in the issue is an article that suggests you search for your own "inner child" when working on your children's book. Think back to what it felt like to arrive at a big test completely unprepared (still the subject of nightmares umpteen years later!), make a visit to your old childhood playground to summon up long-ago joys and fears, try to remember how you felt when your icky new brother became the center of your parents' world when you were six. Such emotions, properly worked into a setting that reflects the world of your readers (popular movies, cartoons, music, electronic gear and so on), will make your words live for a new generation. An annual subscription to Children's Book Insider (12 issues) is $34.00 from the publisher; we'll send you a sample copy for $2.59.


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