Publishing industry veterans Richard Nash and Emily Cook have teamed up to launch Cursor Marketing Services. The company offers marketing and publicity support for international publishers distributing in the U.S.
Nash, who lives in Brooklyn, is well known in the industry, having run Soft Skull Press and the online book discovery site Small Demons (which launched in 2011 and closed in 2013). Cook lives in Minneapolis and is a former marketing and publicity director at Milkweed Editions. She is also the former program director for the Chicago Tribune Lit Fest. Both Nash and Cook will work remotely.
“The idea is to offer on-the-ground support for publishers who don’t have a U.S. office,” Nash said. Elaborating, Nash said Cursor would do tasks ranging from "attending sales conferences and book fairs" to "assisting with setting up book tours, soliciting media, [and] sending out ARCs and galleys." Summarizing, Nash said: "We do the legwork for our clients that they cannot do for themselves.”
The duo will also help publishers with pragmatic branding issues, such as choosing the best book cover for the U.S. market or crafting flap copy. “It’s all about streamlining their business here,” added Cook.
The first clients for the company are U.K. publishers Canongate and Icon Books; SCRIBE from Australia; and Coach House Books from Canada.
The plan is to limit the company to just a handful of clients, and ideally, ones that “are complementary” with each other, i.e. “independent in spirit,” said Nash.
Alana Wilcox, Publishing Director of Coach House Books, praised the endeavor, saying, "We're thrilled to be working with Emily and Richard – between the two of them, they seem to know everybody and everything about publishing in America, and having them working on the ground there on our behalf seems like the ideal solution for a publisher like us that's trying to be in two places at one time. I can't imagine a better scenario or better people to enact it.'