Eileen Kreit is the President and Publisher of Puffin Books, a division of Penguin Young Readers Group, Penguin Random House. Eileen has been at Puffin her entire career.
"I have the best job in the business."
The backlist is their frontlist. 70% of publication are their backlist titles, while 30% is frontlist. The books are republished, not reprinted, and Puffin is always looking for levers to pull to keep those backlist titles part of the current conversation.
How would you characterize 2016 and what do you anticipate in 2017?
There was a change in the New York Times bestseller list very recently. They've removed lists, without giving publishers notice. NYT reallocated staff to Washington DC. Discoverability is changing.
"Look at your brand and how you can grow that."
"The themes of middle grade always keep it relevant."
A benefit of being a bigger house with smaller boutiques within is that they have a great deal of flexibility. They can publish many different kinds of books by a particular author, with an eye toward publishing authors longterm and building careers.
Kids need empathy today and books that provide empathy.