John At the beginning, it looked like literary agent Paul Fedorko of Trident Media Group wouldn't be able to sell Perkins's
Confessions of an Economic Hit Man. He sent it to more than 20 publishers between July and October 2003, and all said no. One major house even suggested that Perkins turn his book into a novel. The author wrote about his 10 years at a consulting firm under contract to the U.S. government, working at getting Third World countries to accept multibillion-dollar loans for infrastructure projects that would ultimately benefit American multinationals (think Halliburton and Bechtel). Finally, Fedorko sold the book to San Francisco business publisher Berrett-Koehler. Publicity was handled by Maryann Palumbo Marketing Concepts, and Palumbo confronted some major challenges when she attempted to line up media coverage. All the major morning talk shows and network news programs turned her down. The response from major newspapers and magazines was the same. The next plan finally worked—appearances on cable programs such as Democracy Now and on Air America Radio in November and December (pub date was November 9, 2004). Confessions is climbing the Amazon list (#7 this week), is on many regional bestseller charts and on the New York Times Business list. Perkins is a keynoter at the World Social Forum in Brazil on January 31, which is expected to get lots of international press coverage. Berrett-Koehler launched the book with 12,000 copies; a sixth printing of 30,000 brings the total to 92,000.