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content=”PMA began exploring online learning several years ago under the direction of then-PMA Board Member Larry Bram of Teaching Strat”>PMA began exploring online learning several years ago under the
direction of then-PMA Board Member Larry Bram of Teaching Strat



[overline] DIRECTOR’S DESK


by Jan Nathan

Executive Director, PMA


Program Updates and


Online Learning Opportunities


PMA began exploring online
learning several years ago under the direction of Larry Bram of Teaching
Strategies Press, who was then on the board and had begun using this new type
of learning in his company. At that time, we couldn’t find an affordable way to
offer it to our entire membership, but we kept trying to find one.


Enter current PMA board member
Frank Gromling of Ocean Publishers. He took on this challenge, began searching
for affordable vendors, managed to find a package that would work for us, and
then began setting up a menu of classes that would interest many members. No
small task!


PMA Online University premiered in
September 2006 with PMA’s general counsel, Jonathan Kirsch, on How to Build a
Better Book Contract. The second session, in October, was led Brian Jud, who
encouraged members to think outside the box and make money with The Buck Starts


We were able to educate
50–60 people immediately at each of these seminars, but, more important,
we can educate many more because now the sessions are online and you can learn
at your convenience. Visit this URL if you are interested in expanding your
knowledge of book publishing: <span


Because of the holidays, the next
PMA Online University session will take place in January. Since our members are
located all across the United States and as far apart as the East Coast and
Hawaii, we have been holding these classes at 2 p.m.
Eastern time, which gives members everywhere a chance to attend and ask
questions of the presenter.


Whether you need information on
legal matters, design, editorial issues, finance, marketing, sales, or publishing
in general, these online classes are being built to answer your needs. The
Online University is not meant to replace any of the other educational
opportunities that PMA offers—such as the regional one-day seminars we
run throughout the United States with our regional affiliate groups and PMA’s
Publishing University, which will be held in 2007 in New York City at the Park
Central Hotel (watch for detailed information in the mail and online, and see
“What’s New for You at PMA-U,” in this issue). Online learning is an added
benefit to help you achieve and succeed in independent book publishing.


Special Interest Groups Status


A year or so ago, we heard that
publishers in our academic sector needed a forum to discuss opportunities and
challenges they face that are quite different from those confronting typical
mainstream publishers. At that time, we set up a Special Interest Group (SIG)
chat, moderated by Mary Ellen Lepionka of Atlantic Path Publishing, an academic
publisher and group leader of the Massachusetts PMA Affiliate. This group keeps
growing as it helps participants compare notes and discuss effective action.


Last month, PMA set up another
SIG, this time for African-American publishers within the PMA community. The
moderator of this list is current PMA board member Kassahun Checole of Red Sea


No matter where you live, no
matter what the time of day, you can post a message to a PMA SIG you belong to
and get a variety of responses. Quite possibly, they will include the answer
you were searching for but could not find on your own.


Timely Reminders


As we move into and through 2007,
we will be introducing many more programs and sending e-blasts about surveys
you can take to help us plan better for your future and PMA’s. Please make sure
we have a current address for you. If you have not been getting our e-blasts,
please update your listing by sending your most current email address to me at <span


This is the final month for
Benjamin Franklin Awards entries (see the marketing pages in this issue). All
entries are due at the PMA office the first week in January.


Finally, happy holidays from the
PMA board of directors and the PMA office staff. May all your New Year’s wishes
come true.



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