Authors Guild’s Aiken Has ALS

Paul Aiken, the long-time executive director of the Authors Guild, announced last week that he has early-stage Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS), an illness also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease. Aiken has been treating the disease with steroids and said that since Aug. 7, the symptoms in his legs have been in remission. In a statement, Scott Turow, president of the Authors Guild, said it is “business as usual” at theguild, and that Aiken will continue to guide the organization “for the foreseeable future.”

Scholastic Cuts Loss

Gains in the publisher’s educational technology group were not enough to offset declines in the children’s book publishing and distribution unit, resulting in a 5.8% decline in total sales at Scholastic for the first quarter of fiscal 2014 ended Aug. 31, compared to the same period last year. Still, the company cut its net loss in the period to $29.9 million, from $32.1 million in the first quarter of fiscal 2013.

PRH Creates United Fulfillment Group

Penguin Random House announced the creation of a cross-company senior management team for PRH’s fulfillment operations. The unit will be headed by Annette Danek, who was appointed senior v-p, director of fulfillment, PRH.

New Leaders at Whiting Foundation

Daniel Reid has been named the executive director of the Mrs. Giles Whiting Foundation, while Courtney Hodell has been named director of the Whiting Writers’ Awards. The appointments take effect Nov. 1. Hodell, formerly executive editor at Farrar, Straus and Giroux, will replace Barbara Bristol, who has run the Whiting Writers’ Awards for 16 years.

Man Booker Prize Goes Global

After four decades of recognizing the best fiction by authors from the U.K., the Commonwealth, and the Republic of Ireland, on Sept. 18 the Booker Prize Foundation announced expanded criteria for the annual award. Effective next year, the prize will be open to any novel originally published in English by a U.K. publisher.