Dec 17, 2018
Richard Charkin is a British publishing executive who has worked in the publishing business since 1972. He has held executive positions at Pergamon Press, Oxford University Press, Reed International/Reed Elsevier and Current Science Group, and is the former Chief Executive of Macmillan Publishers Limited and Executive Director of Verlagsgruppe Georg von Holtzbrinck.
We met in Bloomsbury, London to discuss some of the challenges Richard sees facing the publishing business. Among other this we talk birth control for books, gatekeepers, the exponential growth of scientific research papers, the continuing success of Harry Potter, hitting it big with best-sellers, the elephant and the codfish strategies, the erosion of copyright laws, salami slices, Brexit, the poverty of authors and demise of public libraries, more authors less money, why British and America editors, aubergines and eggplants, literary agents making work, legal monopolies, Penguin Random House, hardbacks versus paperbacks, Bloomsbury, China and cricket, managed economies and free enterprise, bringing Chinese books in English to the world, Mensch Publishing, Time to Go, Guy Kennaway, how to measure commercial success, publishing assets, and the attraction of combining commerce, culture and creativity.