Sara Nelson is joining Publishers Weekly January 24 as editor-in-chief, reporting to executive vice-president and publisher William McGorry. She replaces Nora Rawlinson, who has left the magazine to pursue other interests.
A journalist for 25 years, Nelson most recently served as the publishing columnist and books editor for the New York Post, where she wrote a weekly column on the business of publishing and oversaw all book coverage and excerpts in the daily and Sunday papers. Before joining the Post, Nelson was the publishing columnist for the New York Observer and senior contributing editor at Glamour. She has also worked at Inside.com, where she was the founding books editor; Self magazine; BP Report; the Oxygen television network; and Bookreporter.com.
"PW has been the bible of the publishing industry for over 100 years," Nelson said. "It's the only vehicle that does everything—news, reviews, features, breaking news, profiles. If you look at the others, some do some of those things, none do all." She said an early aim will be to improve the presentation and timeliness of the content produced by the magazine to make it more accessible to the publishing community. Nelson plans to use e-mail more aggressively to break news about major auctions and other hot developments, although she noted that the industry "doesn't need another blog." She also hopes to get books reviewed earlier. "There is no such thing as too early for a review," she said.
Nelson, in addition to her career in journalism, is also an author: her So Many Books, So Little Time: A Year of Passionate Reading, was published by Putnam, to good reviews, in 2003, and is now in Berkley paperback.
McGorry, who took over as publisher of PW in October, said, "I look forward to working with Sara, as she will bring new energy and new perspective. Publishers Weekly has long served as the voice of the publishing industry, and we intend it to remain so, building on the foundation created in the past."
Rawlinson, before joining PW in 1992, was editor of PW's sister publication Library Journal and director of collection devaloment at the Baltimore County Public Library. During her tenure at PW, Rawlinson oversaw the transition of PW into a business magazine, launched the PW Web site and introduced the first e-mail newsletter in the business, PW Daily for Booksellers, in 1997. She also directed the magazine's coverage of technological changes in the business—the ups and downs of e-books, the rise of Amazon and online bookselling, the growing impact of Google. "I want to sincerely thank Nora for her editorial leadership and am confident she will do well in her future endeavors," McGorry said.