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How to Speak Publishing (Part III)

Let’s face it—sometimes editors, agents, and authors sound like they’re speaking a foreign language. There’s so much publishing jargon to keep straight! We’ve covered some publishing terms in the first two posts of this series, and now we’re back to decode publishing lingo once again.

Launch & Launch Meetings

We all know that publishing a book takes a long time—at least a year and often up to two or three (for more about why it takes so long, visit here). For a lot of that time, the editor and author are working together to make the manuscript great. When the book is finally introduced to the company at large, it’s done so at a launch meeting. These meetings can have different names at different companies; I’ve also heard it called “focus.” Whatever the meeting is called, think of launch meetings—or, as we call them, “launch”—as the debutante ball for the book. We present all of the books of that season (for more on seasons, visit here) to our sales, marketing, and publicity teams and tell them exactly why the book is great. We try to keep our presentations brief and exciting, highlighting what’s most important about each book. These meetings introduce our book to the team so they can start promoting them and getting them in stores!

Sub Rights

As you’ve probably learned by now, pub peeps love to abbreve (translation: publishing people love to abbreviate). “Sub rights” is our abbreviated name for “subsidiary rights.” These are, to put it simply, every right beyond the publication of the book. So that means audio rights, translation rights, large print rights, book club rights, and more are all sub rights. We have a dedicated team of hardworking individuals who sell these rights for our books in the US and around the globe (for insight on how this team sells rights abroad, check out this post). We love to get emails from our sub rights team telling us a book has sold in a foreign territory or for audio or book club rights, and it’s exciting for authors to see their book in a new format.

Pub Day/Release Day

We talked in our first post in this series about how publishing people love to have different names for the same thing. And we just talked about how much we love to abbreviate things! “Pub Day” is a double whammy. It’s short for publication day, which is also called release day. Sadly, “Pub Day” doesn’t mean the day that we all go out drinking. This is the day when a book is available for sale around the country! Authors often celebrate with a launch event or by signing copies at a local store. We’ve all put a lot of work into the book at this point, so we’re all excited it’s finally on sale!

For more insight into publishing lingo check out Part I and Part II.

What publishing terms are still a mystery to you? Tell us in the comments!

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Kat Brzozowski

Native New Hampshirite. Broadway musical nerd. Work team softball slugger. Embroidery aficionado. I’m one part Ramona, one part the monkeys ...

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