IVP - Andy Unedited - The Joy of Interruptions

September 12, 2007

The Joy of Interruptions

Yesterday I was asked

--what subtitle we should have on an upcoming book
--what title I'd recommend for a different book
--how to handle art costs for a book we are copublishing with a British publisher
--whether we are changing the retail price on a backlist book
--to consider suggestions for handling work flow in the editorial department
--if I saw any problem with an editor scheduling a business trip while I would also be gone to the Frankfurt Book Fair
--what price and print run we should recommend for a potential book
--if a particular author ever sent back a signed contract

--which chapter of a proposed book I wanted to photocopy and distribute for an upcoming publishing meeting
--if we should schedule a certain book for next spring or next fall
--if I knew how to get in touch with the author of an out-of-print IVP book published in 1951--or whether the author was still alive
--if I remembered a piece we did on Charles Swindoll because someone wanted to reprint it
--if I would review a memo before it went to the whole office
--a question neither I nor the person who interrupted me can now recall

And that was just from the people who came to my door. That did not include the fifty-some non-spam emails I received or the miscellaneous phone calls.

So what am I to make of all these interruptions? What I make of it is that it is my job to be interrupted.

In my mind, one of the main responsibilities I have as supervisor of the editorial department is to help everyone else get their work done. I keep my door open 90 percent of the time just for this purpose. If I can help people be productive and get their work done, then I've had a good day.

Certainly that's not the entirety of my job. I need to be proactive on a number of fronts, so occasionally I am not available to be interrupted because I'm out of the office or I've closed my door. But I try to make myself as available as possible to help others do well because if they are succeeding, I am succeeding.

Posted by Andy Le Peau at September 12, 2007 8:51 AM Bookmark and Share


You should just be glad that your interruptors are so good-looking, witty and intelligent.

Comment by: Taryn at September 12, 2007 2:58 PM

Taryn: did you read Andy's previous blog? Be careful.

Comment by: Isaac Bickerstaff at September 13, 2007 11:46 AM

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book cover"Some publishers tell you what to believe. Other publishers tell you what you already believe. But InterVarsity Press helps you believe," says J. I. Packer. Andy Le Peau and Linda Doll describe how this came to be a hallmark of InterVarsity Press in Heart. Soul. Mind. Strength, an anecdotal history spanning the sixty years from the founding of IVP in 1947 to the present day.