A month ago, I met with a former colleague from my early days as an editor at Bantam Books, Roger Cooper, now Publisher of Vanguard Press and a senior executive at Perseus, headed by another former colleague (and boss!), David Steinberger. Perseus, the largest independent publisher in the US, has built an impressive distribution business geared to small presses. Now, Cooper explained, they were extending some of that capability to literary agencies, offering “a cutting-edge digital service” to our clients through Argo Navis Author Services, which they describe as “a digital distribution and marketing service designed to enable professional authors with reverted or not-in-print works too get their titles to the marketplace”. Agents, Perseus reasons, are already curating content; a natural next step is to have them acting as an interface between authors and Argo Navis. Now, our authors can revitalize works that are no longer readily available or bring to market works for which they hold the electronic text rights.
I’m delighted to share with you the news that we’ve just signed with Perseus Books to participate in this exciting program. We can’t wait to discuss the possibilities with our clients. ArgoNavis offers many levels of service, including a print-on-demand component and even an option to do small print runs. I have confidence in this relationship because Perseus has already, in effect, road-tested this system with their small press clients. Now we, in concert with our clients, can in effect, become small presses.