Big News From Tor Books

Involving my editor Patrick Nielsen Hayden and others. Allow me to reprint the press release:

Patrick Nielsen Hayden has been named Associate Publisher of Tor Books, effective immediately. This award-winning 28-year veteran of Tor has brought numerous prestigious and bestselling authors to the list, including John Scalzi, Cory Doctorow and Charlie Jane Anders, to name a few. His vision has been instrumental in the development of Tor.

Devi Pillai, who led the US division of Orbit to its position as Tor’s fastest-growing competitor, will be joining Tor, also as Associate Publisher. “I’ve watched Devi’s work with admiration for a long time now; her qualifications are outstanding, and she’ll be a great addition to our team,” said Tor Books publisher Tom Doherty. “As we continue our 35-year commitment to adult SF and fantasy, Devi and Patrick will work alongside each other to oversee our numerous editors who work primarily in these twin genres,” he continued.

In addition, Doherty has named Linda Quinton Publisher of Forge Books. Previously she was Associate Publisher and Vice President of marketing for Tor/Forge. Forge publishes many popular and bestselling authors, including William R. Forstchen, Eric Lustbader, Douglas Preston, Patrick Taylor and Bruce Cameron. The company will announce a new head of marketing and publicity in the near future to fill the role Quinton leaves behind.

Kathleen Doherty, Publisher of Tor Teen and Starscape, has spent 30 years growing our YA and middle-grade publishing, first through book clubs and book fairs, and then by developing our program into a pair of full-fledged, NYT-bestselling imprints full of excellent YA and middle-grade authors. Kathleen has also been responsible for the tremendous school, library, and educational market growth that our whole house has benefited from over the past three decades. The company intends to increase the marketing support we provide to her excellent team.

“At a time when so many of our competitors are cutting back, consolidating imprints, and reducing staff, it’s wonderful to know that Macmillan enthusiastically supports our plan for growth,” says Doherty.

“We will shortly be announcing further additions and promotions within our editorial staff. Here’s to an amazing team that it’s my privilege to lead into a great future.”

I am first hugely thrilled for Patrick, with whom I have worked for the entire length of my novel-writing career. Hugely thrilled but not in the least surprised. He’s been at Tor for nearly three decades and has had a very large role in making it the success it has been to date. He’s a natural hire here.

I’m also hugely thrilled for Devi Pillai, and for Tor that they have managed to convince her to join the team. She’s generally considered to be one of the smartest people in the field and she’s done fantastic work at Orbit, hands down. They couldn’t have picked better.

And I’m hugely thrilled for me, and other Tor writers, present and future. It is in fact a big deal that Macmillan is investing Tor rather than standing pat, or cutting back. It’s important for authors, no matter who they are or how they publish, that the total ecosystem for publishing is robust and offers a range of options to get their work out in the world. So whether you’re self-pubbed, small-pubbed or large-pubbed (or some combination of the three), one of the largest publishing companies in the world deciding to grow its science fiction and fantasy publisher is an unambiguously good thing. I’m glad to be a Tor author today and look forward to continuing to be one for some time to come.

30 Comments on “Big News From Tor Books”

  1. That’s…really great. Big, big congrats to PNH and Devi Pillai. And on the “non-zero-sum-game” front, I hope Orbit picks up someone awesome to fill Ms. Pillai’s shoes. I’ve seen a lot of good stuff from both houses lately, and I hope to continue to do so.

  2. I have never heard of “Publisher” as a title for an employee and am more familiar with it as describing a company. What is the difference here between his new role and the role he had as an Editor?

  3. Gosh, it’s almost like that boycott over the manufactured controversy regarding Irene Gallo didn’t happen. Who knew that would come to nothing?

  4. Jesse, “publisher” is a standard job title in the industry. Tom Doherty is the publisher of Tor, Forge, Orbit and other lines, which is why they all say “TDA” somewhere on the cover — it stands for “Tom Doherty Associates.”

    If a publishing company is a one-person operation, that person is the publisher.

    Patrick is still an editor. He still acquires and edits books. Being an associate publisher means he also oversees other editors and operations, and has more executive/management responsibilities and more headaches.

  5. Wait, I thought the boycott had ruined TOR, and they spent every bit of their money on Scalzi, their collapse and/or the firing of PNH was iminent!


  6. “Patrick is still an editor. He still acquires and edits books. Being an associate publisher means he also oversees other editors and operations, and has more executive/management responsibilities and more headaches.”

    Glad to hear he’ll still be acquiring and editing. Hope the new headaches are few and pass quickly.

  7. @Teresa Nielsen Hayden
    Thank you for taking the time to respond! I have known that “TDA” the company was a publisher but I did not know that Tom Doherty the person had the title of “Publisher” and just assumed he was the CEO or President of “TDA”. My company “West Publishing” does it the way I described but a legal materials publisher probably does things a bit different than a fiction publisher. Thanks!

  8. John, your really DIW in your ruining Tor, aren’t you ;)

    Congrats to PNH, and all at Tor/Macmillan for investing and growing the market. And to John for contributing to that success.

  9. @Teresa Nielsen Hayden: “Tom Doherty is the publisher of Tor, Forge, Orbit and other lines . . . ”

    So, if I read things correctly (a big if), Tom Doherty LLC basically runs Tor and Forge (owned by MacMillan) and Orbit (owned by Hachette).

    So, Mr. Doherty is basically running publishing operations that are in direct competition? That can’t be correct, can it?

    I have a boatload of Tor books in my bookcase, but Orbit is steadily gaining shelf space.

  10. @Pedro, I’m almost certain that Teresa means the ORB imprint of Tor rather than Orbit. Because if not then it is past time for Tom Doherty to get some associates to help publishing so many lines. However since copyright is a monopoly and books are not actually a commodity (a Scalzi novel is not usually substitutable for a John Julius Norwich history or some Carol Ann Duffy poetry) the competition is not as direct as in some other industries

    (It’s fairly well known that Tom Doherty is also a partner in Baen books, so if he were Orbit Publisher he would actually have remarkable influence over the US SF scene. And as he’s, to put it delicately, not getting any younger, then it’s sensible for him to begin planning for the day when he isn’t going to be all hands-on day-to-day running. So good news all round)

  11. @Neil W: SF authors? I follow. How they get published and by whom? Not so much.Thanks for the clarification.

  12. Ah… reading more closely. I think, as Neil W says, TNH appears to have typo-ed Orbit for Orb.

  13. Congratulations to all concerned. Tor is a great place, and have brought us much to celebrate. My dream job: to be a proofreader for Tor or Gollancz. Tor does okay at this, but might use the help. Gollancz doesn’t do so well at this, and definitely needs the help. Tor: consider this my application for the jobe uv prufwreedng.

  14. Teresa observes that the worst typos are the ones that look perfectly reasonable but are wrong. Which is to say, Tom Doherty has no connection to Orbit, although Tom Doherty Associates does have an occasionally-used trade-paperback-backlist imprint called Orb. Damn You Autocorrect.

  15. I call it Auto-Incorrect. ;)

    Glad to see anything that improves and increases publishing great stories and writers, or any good-quality text and images, such as informational. When so much seismic upheaval has happened, it’s good to see thngs get better somewhere.

    I’m glad to see the YA/teen stuff get support. I was one of those readers who was already reading adult-level books by late elementary and early junior high school (middle school). Anything that gets more kids/teens to love reading and learning, maybe even writing, artwork, and design, is a good thing.

    Science fiction and fantasy are my favorite genres. Yes, I was one of those kids who’d love to go to the local B. Dalton’s or Waldenbooks, back in the day, to the tiny science fiction section, and you could pay what seemed like the high price of $1.25 to $1.30 or so for a typical paperback. This was back in the late 1970’s.

    By 1984 and into the 1990’s, I was in something called “desktop publishing,” that heretical thing which used a Mac computer and early laser printers to create page layouts, graphics, typeset text, and so on. Back then, almost no local printer or publisher thought that was anything but vile heresy, low-quality, not done the age-old traditional way.

    How very much things have changed since then.

    And then they had another huge change with ebooks and downloads and web publishing and stores. This has still not settled down, and the whole publishing / editing / design industry is changing into something else entirely because of it, just like the transition from old hand-done publication design and printing into computer-based work. Only the ebook and web change is even more fundamental and shape-changing.

    It’s still a wild ride, readers, writers, editors, and publishing / graphic arts / design folks. Hang on, adapt, and roll with it. Much of the change is ultimately good, but the growing pains are, well, painful.


  16. Wow. This is fantastic news indeed! Congratulations to everyone involved! And also congratulations to the scifi community because this can only be good for us. :)

  17. Dear Folks,

    Orbit vs. Orb…

    Proper nouns are the worst thing to try to proofread. Our brains are so used to seeing non-words as names that our critical faculties skim over capitalized nouns.

    Back when I wrote Post Exposure, I specifically called out an article written by a fellow magazine writer, “Joe English,” commending it to the readers for more in-depth discussion of a particular topic.

    It wasn’t until some years later, after I spent several hours unsuccessfully looking for that article in my back issues that I twigged to the fact that his name was “Joe Englander.” Which I entirely knew, but the typo had successfully propagated itself into my brain.

    More notably, Joe himself never noticed the error. His brain read what was supposed to be there and substituted it in.

    Then there was the time both the table of contents and the title on a review article referred to “Afga” print paper. Happily, Agfa’s PR head was entirely amused; he said everyone’d know who we were talking about.

    I HATE proper nouns!

    None of which should distract from how very excellently cool it is that Patrick got promoted! Yay, Yay, and furthermore YAY!

    pax \ whatshisface
    [ Please excuse any word-salad. MacSpeech in training! ]
    — Ctein’s Online Gallery
    — Digital Restorations

  18. What is the difference between an Associate Editor and what PNH was doing before? Those of us outside the industry don’t know what the titles mean.

%d bloggers like this: