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Casting A Wider Spell

Publishers Weekley, USA
Sep. 1, 2003
Judith Rosen
publishersweekly.reviewsnews.com

ReligionNewsBlog.com • Monday September 8, 2003

‘Mainstream’ is definitely the word for this flourishing category

After years on the fringes, New Agewhich includes some alternative health, addiction and recovery, psychology and spiritual titles, as well as books on Eastern traditionsmay finally be approaching the middle of the road. Today yoga centers dot cities and towns throughout the country, and subjects like reincarnation and afterlife turn up on many television and radio shows. Even the New York Times bestsellers list reflects New Age themes, not just J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter titles, but Dan Brown’s The Da Vinci Code (Doubleday), which is based on research into early religions, and Alice Sebold’s The Lovely Bones (Little, Brown), which is narrated from the beyond.

“New Age is no longer becoming mainstream; it is mainstream,” says Katie McMillan, publicity manager at Inner Ocean Publishing Company. “Let’s face it, between the war, terrorism and the economy, people are dealing with issues that they may not have ever had to deal with before, and they are looking for the tools that will help them.” Adds Deborah Balmuth, editorial director at Storey Publishing, “This is leading more people to focus on the present moment (through mindfulness practice) and on fostering peace within themselves as a vehicle for world peace. The greatest challenge publishers face is how to respond to the growing mainstream interest in yoga, Buddhism and other Eastern spiritual practices in fresh ways with new voices, formats and viewpoints.”

Booksellers, too, are responding to the category’s newfound acceptance. “One person’s New Age is another person’s mainstream,” notes Elaine Petrocelli, co-owner of Book Passage in Corte Madera, Calif. She shelves New Age titles together in the store’s Spiritual section and has begun scheduling New Age author events on Sunday afternoons, a tip she picked up from Denver’s Tattered Cover. At R.J. Julia Booksellers in Madison, Conn., body/mind/spirit titles are getting a room of their own when the store is remodeled next month. “People want a little privacy,” says backlist buyer Karen Corvello, who plans to add a few comfy chairs and a table in the new space. “New Age is certainly mainstream,” says Steven Fidel in the marketing and publicity department at Powell’s Books in Portland, Ore. “It gets a little more space in our New Arrivals area. We’re probably booking more New Age type authors now than we did, say, five years ago.”

Do You Believe in Magick?

Although more types of people are exploring New Age, it has not forsaken its pagan rootsthe Wicca/pagan subgenre remains strong. According to Bruce Bender, managing director of Kensington’s Citadel Press imprint, pagan book buyers tend to buy more books per capita than those of all other faith groups. “As far as we’re concerned, Wicca has become a category unto itself. There are currently 65 Wiccan titles on our list, and the unusual thing is that none of them have gone out of print,” says Bender. He finds a large Wicca audience at both ends of the age continuumcrones and teens. (See sidebar, “Not Just for Grownups,” …) For the mature Wiccan, Citadel is bringing out The Magical Crone: Celebrating the Wisdom of Later Life (Sept.) by Jennifer Reif and Marline Haleff. Other Wiccan titles include Sirona Knight’s Wiccan Spell a Day: 365 Spells, Charms, and Potions for the Whole Year (Aug.), The Witch’s Book of Wisdom (Aug.) by Patricia Telesco and a collection of pagan poetry, The Pagan’s Muse: Words of Ritual, Invocation, and Inspiration (Sept.), edited by Jane Raeburn.

At New Page Books, the general-interest division of Career Press in Franklin Lakes, N.J., New Age titles account for about 25% of the list. “New Age is growing for us, especially Wicca,” says president Ron Fry, who finds no resistance to the subject, even in the Bible Belt. “In every category, author credentials are important; in Wicca, every pagan has a following. Oberon Zell-Ravenheart, author of Grimoire for the Apprentice Wizard (Feb.), may not be someone who the New Age buyer at Barnes & Noble would necessarily know. But if you go to the Festivals, everyone knows who he is.” New Page is trying to avoid the glut of introductory witchcraft titles with books like Dana D. Eilers’s Pagans and the Law: Understand Your Rights (Sept.) and the just-published Wiccan Bible: Exploring the Mysteries of the Craft from Birth to Summerland by A.J. Drew, host of the annual Real Witches Ball in Columbus, Ohio..

“We’ll continue to do introductory and how-to books, but we’ll also do more advanced titles,” says Llewellyn marketing and publicity director Lisa Braun, pointing to more rigorous books such as Raven Grimassi’s Spirit of the Witch: Religion and Spirituality in Contemporary Witchcraft (Oct.), a new version of company founder Llewellyn George’s classic Llewellyn’s New A to Z Horoscope Maker and Interpreter: A Comprehensive Self-Study Course (Nov.), and Christopher Penczak’s The Outer Temple of Witchcraft: Circles, Spells, and Rituals (Apr.).

“Wicca is certainly growing for us,” says JoAnn Deck, publisher of Celestial Arts and The Crossing Press, both part of Ten Speed Press. She attributes the growing popularity of New Age to the fact that “it allows discussion on spiritual issues without tripping over legalism or rigid doctrine. In my opinion, spiritual truths need to be restated; people need to hear things in a new way.” Upcoming Wiccan titles include The Wicca Herbal: Recipes, Magick and Abundance (Celestial Arts, Sept.) by Jamie Wood and Magical Meditations: Guided Imagery for the Pagan Path (Crossing Press, Oct.) by Yasmine Galenorn.

Some pagans just want to have fun. Lucy Summer’s Hex and the City: Sophisticated Spells for the Urban Witch (Barron’s, Aug.) offers single witches what Sex and the City does for their “normal” counterparts. If not, there’s always the movies, according to Nancy Peske and Beverly West in Cinematherapy for the Soul (Delta, Feb.). On a more serious note, John Matthews offers a history of wizardry, Wizards: The Quest for the Wizard from Merlin to Harry Potter (Barron’s, Aug.); David Lohff a guide to dreams, Dream Coaching (Running Press, Feb.); and Vivienne Crowley a memoir of The Magickal Life (Penguin, Aug.)

Practical Makes Perfect

“Our books have tended to the practical, or now even more practical, for the most part do-it-yourself,” says Sterling president and CEO Charles Nurnberg. “And the price has to be better than everybody else. In good times we want to be an easy buy, in bad times we want to be the only buy.” This fall Sterling will add New Age titles from parent company Barnes & Noble, including one previously proprietary book that has sold hundreds of thousands of copies since 1996: Gustavus Hindman Miller’s Ten Thousand Dreams Interpreted (Sept.). New Age how-to runs the gamut from Practical Palmistry (Collins & Brown, Aug.) by Jon Dathen to Crafts for the Spirit: Thirty Beautiful Projects to Enhance Your Personal Journey (Lark, Oct.) by Ronni Lundy.

“I think people are interested in practical books they can put into practice right now,” says Red Wheel/Weiser publisher Jan Johnson, who still feels the impact of the events of September 11. “Our acquisitionswhat we’re going out to look forare different.” Sue Thoele’s Growing Hope: Sowing the Seeds of Positive Change in Your Life and the World (Feb., Conari) reflects the need for hope from the fall of 2001, as do Susyn Reeve’s Choose Peace and Happiness: A 52-Week Guide (Red Wheel, Sept.), which grew out of a workshop she taught after 9/11; Suzanne Falter-Barns’s Living Your Joy: A Practical Guide to Happiness (Ballantine, Sept.); and Dina Glouberman’s The Joy of Burnout: How the End of the World Can Be a New Beginning (Inner Ocean, Oct.).

“New Age is a growth area for us,” says Adams Media publishing director Gary M. Krebs. “People are very price-conscious these days. We’re able to get on this crowded shelf by underpricing the competition. We really have found that $14.95 is a breaking point.” Given the success of New Age titles in the house’s flagship Everything seriesincluding Michael Hathaway’s The Everything Psychic Book (Sept.) and Phylameana lila Dsy’s The Everything Reike Book (Mar.)Adams Media plans to launch a New Age series in fall 2004. Currently it publishes four to six stand-alone New Age books a season, such as Carolina da Silva’s Sacred Spaces (May 2004).

Price hasn’t been an issue for two-year-old Fair Winds Press, part of the Rockport Publishing Group. The Gloucester, Mass.based mind/body/spirit publisher’s New Age books range from $9.95 for The Little Book of Bathroom Meditations: Spiritual Wisdom for Everyday (July) by Michelle Heller to $35 for The Shakespeare Oracle: Let the Bard Predict Your Future (Oct.), a book and deck kit by A. Bronwyn Llewellyn, illustrated by Cynthia von Buhler. Despite the disparity in price, both books will be featured at Barnes & Noble locations, the humor book next to cash registers. So far it’s been smooth sailing for the imprint. According to publisher Holly Schmidt, “This year Fair Winds will comprise approximately 40% of U.S. sales of the Rockport Publishing Group, which includes Rockport and Rotovision.”

The Power of Myth

“New Age titles are still the cash cow,” says Hay House publicity director Jacqui Clark. “The main difference these days is that New Age has moved into the mainstream market with sales to Target, Wal-Mart and Costco as the norm, along with appearances on national TV shows. We promote the titles like regular books now.” That includes big-name endorsements such as Larry King’s foreword to John Edwards’s After Life: Answers from the Other Side (Princess Books, Sept.), which has 200,000 copies in print following a second pre-publication printing.

When it comes to promotion, says Clark, “the old mail-a-book-off-and-hope-it-gets-there is a thing of the past.” Instead Hay House has become proactive with such programs as its four-city Mystical Connections Tour, featuring well-known psychics like Doreen Virtue, author of Chakra Clearing: Awakening Your Spiritual Power to Know and Heal (Jan.), and up-and-comers like Sonia Choquette, author of Diary of a Psychic (July). Next month, the publisher will mount its own I Can Do It conference, featuring founder Louise Hay as well as Suze Orman and Marianne Williamson.

At Inner Traditions/Bear & Company, president Ehud Sperling tells PW, “We’re doing very well. We’re ahead of last year and we were 20% up then. You can look at our growth in troubled times as a serious commitment to our subject area.” Of course, a mention of two of Margaret Starbird’s books on Mary Magdalene in The Da Vinci Code hasn’t hurt. Starbird’s The Woman with the Alabaster Jar (1993) went from sales of 200 copies a month to 2,500; The Goddess of the Gospels, from 70 to 700. Starbird’s third book on the forgotten apostle, Magdalene’s Lost Legacy, was released in May.

Thorsons/Element, a division of HarperCollins U.K. with U.S. offices in Boston, has also benefited from the Da Vinci effect. Sales and marketing director Steve Fischer attributes interest in what he terms “repressed/alternative religious history” for boosting sales for Laurence Gardner’s Lost Secrets of the Sacred Ark: Amazing Revelations of the Incredible Power of Gold (Mar. 2003) and Christopher Knight and Kristen Hartvig’s Book of Hiram: Freemasonry, Venus, and the Secret Key to the Life of Jesus (Jan.). “It takes a big commercial bestseller to turn people on to new ideas,” says Fischer. “There’s nothing new about New Age; there’s always been a search for a higher self.”

For many New World Library titles 10,000 copies in one year would be a lot, but not nearly enough for Stillness Speaks (Sept.), the follow-up to Eckhart Tolle’s bestselling The Power of Myth. “We’re printing 200,000 copies and we’ve advanced 150,000,” says associate publisher Munro Magruder. “We just did a promotion with Amazon, and it reached number two, behind Harry Potter.” With an excerpt in O magazine, Tolle’s reached a level that most other authors aspire to. Magruder believes that’s because Stillness Speaks, like other New World Library titles such as Riding Between the Worlds: Expanding Our Potential Through the Way of the Horse (Nov.) and Angel Cats: God’s Messengers of Comfort (spring 2004) resonate with people dissatisfied with their lives. Other books that offer positive advice include The Call: Discovering Why You Are Here (HarperSanFrancisco, Sept.) by Oriah Mountain Dreamer, which has an announced 100,00 copy first printing; Faye Mandell’s Self Powerment (Dutton, Sept.), which helps readers arrive at a state of “Here-Now”; and Dante’s Path (Gotham, Sept.) by Bonney Gulino Schaub and Richard Schaub, which uses The Divine Comedy as a metaphor for leading connected lives.

Deepak Chopra, whose two forthcoming titles are The Spontaneous Fulfillment of Desire: Harnessing the Infinite Power of Coincidence (Harmony, Oct.) and The Seven Spiritual Laws of Yoga (Wiley, May), with David Simon, continues to be a spiritual leader of New Age. “What makes Deepak such a force,” says Harmony publisher Shaye Areheart, “is that he himself is always evolving. He’s not a salesman; he’s not a showman. He’s very devoted to making people’s lives better. I think what proves that New Age books are important is when a 9/11 happens, we turn immediately to these authors and these books from whom we got relief all along.” Other “helpful” books on Areheart’s list include Arthur Jeon’s hip guide, City Dharma: A Survival Handbook for City Dwellers and Suburbanites (Feb.) and well-known British psychic Mia Dolan’s memoir, I Know Why We Are Here: The True Story of an Ordinary Woman’s Extraordinary Gift.

“The way I look at it, New Age has grown into middle age,” says Tom Miller, executive editor of general interest books at John Wiley & Sons. “New Age has got its tentacles into health, spirituality and science.” Like Hay House’s Clark, he uses a lot of mainstream techniques to build interest. “I start by getting as many endorsements on a book as I can. It not only looks good on the book, but it starts getting word-of-mouth going from the manuscript stage. It helps.” Among Miller’s upcoming books are Thomas and Beverly Bien’s Finding the Center Within: The Healing Way of Mindfulness Meditation (Oct.) and the first paperback edition of Michael Samuels’s Healing with the Mind’s Eye: A Guide to Using Imagery and Visions for Personal Growth (Nov.), which was originally published in 1991.

Ancient traditions from various cultures continue to be a source of New Age wisdom, whether it’s Irish myths in Niall Mac Coitir’s Irish Trees: Myths, Legends and Folklore (Dufour Editions, Nov.) with watercolors by Grania Langrishe or Native American ways of viewing the land in Nature’s Way: Native Wisdom for Living in Balance with Earth (HarperSanFrancsico, Mar.) by Ed McGaa and Eagle Man.

Not Your Typical New Age Publisher

Some publishers that aren’t typically thought of as New Age do in fact publish books that cross over. That’s true for religion publisher Shambhala Publications in Boston and its many editions of Sun Tzu, most recently as a book and deck kit, The Art of War Box (Sept.). “It’s hard to tell where the line is,” says Shambhala president Peter Turner. “Books that a few years ago might have been perceived of as Buddhist books aren’t perceived that way anymore. Most are received as pretty mainstream.” The works of Tibetan Buddhist Pema Chdrnlike her upcoming The Compassion Box (Sept.), which contains a book, CD and card deckare also category breakers. “People are clamoring for tools,” says Turner. “These are scary times, uncertain times. When she says ‘Chaos should be regarded as really good news,’ she’s telling you that the solution to the problem is the problem.”

Not that boxes and card decks, two popular New Age sidelines, are for religion publishers only. Chronicle Books offers The Kali Box: Goddess of Creation and Destruction (June), which includes a painted Kali figurine and a book by Manuela Dunn Mascetti on Indian art and myths as well as The Tibetan Buddhism Deck: Buddhas, Deities and Bodhisattvas (July) by Priya Hemenway and The Healing Deck: 36 Affirmations for Mental, Physical, and Spiritual Wellness (Sept.) by Amy Zerner and Monte Farber. Running Press has a number of mini-kits with a New Age theme, including The Art of the Bonsai Potato (Mar.) by Jeffrey E. Fitzsimmons.

Asian-oriented Tuttle Publishing, a member of the Periplus Publishing Group, has also found new readers among New Agers. “There’s a general interest in spiritual approaches, and there are Asian approaches that have proved popular, like Buddhism. This has always been a pretty strong part of the Tuttle list, and from our point of view, we’re going to grow that part of our list,” says publishing director Ed Walters, who would like to replicate the success of Kakuzo Okakuroa’s The Book of Tea with a new work based on Buddhist aesthetics, Wabi Sabi: The Japanese Art of Impermanence (Nov.) by Andrew Juniper; Book of Peace: Meditations from Around the World (Journey Editions, Aug.) by Claire Nahmad; and Asian Face Reading: Unlock the Secrets Hidden in the Human Face (Journeyman Editions, Sept.) by Boye Lafayette De Mente. Other mainstream books originating from Eastern thought include Where Is Love? A Simple Buddhist Guide to Romantic Happiness (Andrews McMeel, Dec.) by Taro Gold and Be a Light unto Yourself: Discovering and Accepting Who You Are from the Words of the Buddha (Andrews McMeel, Oct.) by Priya Hemenway and Philip Dunn.

With its emphasis on illustrated books, Welcome Books might seem like an unlikely New Age press. But that’s one of the audiences for its photographic celebration of Buddha, with photographs by Jon Ortner and an introduction by Jack Kornfield. “It’s cross-market in the same way Jack Kornfield’s cross-market. Buddhist teachings are wisdom almost any religion can embrace,” says publisher Lena Tabori, whose marketing plans range from features in New Age Retailer and Popular Photography to a window at tony Henri Bendel in New York City. Ryland Peters & Small also tries to marry strong images with New Age content in books like Magic House: Practical Magic for a Harmonious Home (Sept.) by Teresa Moorey and My Dream Journal (Sept.) by Charles Phillips, which includes tips and exercises on dreaming.

Now that New Age has become accepted by popular culture, what’s next? “The lines are very blurry between self-improvement and spiritual health. We’ve been here since January, and we’re scratching our heads where the market is,” says Gotham Books president Bill Shinker, who back in 1992 published two of the first New Age writers to break through into the mainstream, Thomas Moore (Care of the Soul) and Marianne Williamson (A Return to Love). Despite the uncertainties, judging by the diversity of titles that have come to be known as New Age, publishers’ future lists will contain a heady mix of spirituality, the soul and the sacred in everyday life, with an overlay of self-improvement that will appeal to pagan and nonpagan alike.


Sidebar: Not Just for Grownups Anymore

Given that the hottest book this summer was a children’s fantasy about a 15-year-old wizard named Harry, it doesn’t take an advanced divination degree from Hogwarts to foresee that kids are reading New Age books.

For Adams Media Corporation in Avon, Mass., the teen market is especially important. “We know teens like to spend money. They buy books and CDs and they go to New Age novelty shops,” says publishing director Gary M. Krebs. After the house’s surprise teen success with Please Stop Laughing at Me by Jodee Blanco, which was marketed to adults, Adams’s new strategy is full teen books ahead. Coming this month is an illustrated guide to using the tarot for dating, friendship and academics, Teen Tarot by Theresa Francis-Cheung and Terry Silvers. At Sterling, too, teens rule, or could learn how to, with The Girls’ Guide to Dreams (Oct.) by Kristi Collier Thompson. Touchstone/Fireside is putting the emphasis on style when it comes to marketing Teen People astrologers Tali and Ophira Edut’s Astrostyle: Star-Studded Advice for Love, Life, and Looking Good (Oct.). The dynamic duo will give workshops at J.C. Penney stores in the greater New York area on dressing according to your sign.

Given the success of Silver RavenWolf’s book for pagan teens, Solitary Witch: The Ultimate Book of Shadows for the New Generation, which has sold more than 50,000 copies since February, Llewellyn plans to continue to attend festivals where the young witches go to promote books like Catherine Wishart’s Teen Goddess: How to Look, Love and Live Like a Goddess (July). “Children’s New Age is really taking off for us,” says marketing and publicity director Lisa Braun. “We have about 15 titles for the teen to middle-grade reader, and we’ll be publishing about that much next year,” she says. Earlier this month Llewellyn launched a contest at www.llewellyn.com for kids to name a new site just for teens.

“Teens are hungry for answers and comfort about their bodies, their lives, their issues and particularly their spirituality,” notes Perigee and Prentice Hall editor Christel Winkler, who points to the growing number of teen Buddhist meditation retreats. To find the right authors who speak to teens, she turned to 17-year-old Gwinevere Rain for Moonbeams and Shooting Stars (Prentice Hall, Mar.) on spiritual development and Buddhist nun Diana Winston for Wide Awake: A Buddhist Guide for Teens (Perigee, Aug.).

Younger readers can choose from books about different cultures and ways of knowing, including Goddesses: A World of Myth and Magic (Barefoot, Sept., ages 8 and up) by Burleigh Mutn, illustrated by Rebecca Guay, and How Ganesh Got His Elephant Head (Inner Traditions, Nov., ages 69) by Harish Johari and Vatsala Sperling, illustrated by Pieter Weltevrede. And Skylight Books is starting a series of Spiritual Biographies for Young Readers (ages 6 and up) based on Maura D. Shaw’s picture book, Ten Amazing People, illustrated by Stephen Marchesi. According to associate publisher Jon Sweeney, the original book has sold more than 10,000 copies to date and won an Independent Publishing Award. It has also attracted interest from home schoolers outside the Bible Belt. The first two books in the new series, also by Shaw and illustrated by Marchesi, will be out in October: Thich Nhat Hanh: Buddhism in Action and Gandhi: India’s Great Soul.

Though this is only a sampling of books in this burgeoning niche, it’s clear that the prevalence of New Age in the adult market (perhaps with a nod to Harry‘s influence) is spreading into the youth arena faster than a speeding broomstick.

Spanning a New Age

Since its launch in 1995, One Spirit Book Club, one of the largest specialty interest clubs at Bookspan, continues to change its product mix. “Most people are more discriminating now,” says editor-in-chief Patricia Gift. “The people who have been practicing Buddhists for 15 or 20 years want more advanced material. For people in the grazer category, they want material that is more authentic, thorough and practical. What works are books that have a nuts-and-bolts approach.”

Price considerations, too, have changed. “It was the conventional wisdom that you needed to be under $20,” says Gift, who often crosses that threshold with offerings like a book featuring three Pema Chdrn titles from ShambhalaStart Where You Are, When Things Fall Apart and The Wisdom of No Escapeand an 80-minute meditation CD from SoundsTrue for $24.95. In addition, Gift’s own buying patterns have shifted. “In the last couple of years, big publishers have cut back,” she says. “We’re buying as much from small to medium publishers and from the U.K. as from big publishers.” That’s not to say that titles from large houses don’t work. Many do, like Tibetan Buddhist Life (DK, Oct.) by Don Farber, which is a main selection.

To promote the club, One Spirit mails its catalogue to members 17 times a year, or every three weeks. In addition, the club does four annual direct-mail campaigns to encourage people to join, and places ads in core magazines such as O, Yoga, Real Simple and Natural Health.

Putting the ‘New’ in New Age

Even with one of the most successful backlist titles on the market, Eckhart Tolle’s The Power of Now: A Guide to Spiritual Enlightenment (still hovering in the top 30 on the BookScan bestseller lists four years after its publication), New World Library continues to look for ways to re-promote its books. This fall it will launch a gift line using the Tolle bestsellerThe Power of Now Meditation Deck: 50 Inspiration Cardsand Shakti Gawain’s six-millioncopy seller Creative VisualizationCreate Your Own Affirmations: A Creative Visualization Kit. “We’re always trying to re-energize backlist,” says associate publisher Munro Magruder. “The idea is to leverage New World Library’s content. We’re looking at about 10 products a year, and we’re doing most of the design internally.”

“The unorthodox, the unexplained maverick topicsthese are the kinds of books we’re looking for,” says Patrick Huyghe, editor-in-chief of Paraview Publishing, the body/mind/spirit publishing arm of Paraview, which includes Paraview Literary Agency in New York City. Founded three years ago to publish print-on-demand books, Paraview launched an unusual joint venture with Simon & Schuster’s Pocket Books this spring. “We find the books, the authors and the editors and then turn the book over to Pocket,” explains Huyghe. “The idea was a half-dozen titles the first year, nine the second year and 12 the third.” While most Paraview Pocket Books are trade paperback nonfiction titlesThe Phaselock Code: Through Time, Death and Reality: The Metaphysical Adventures of the Man Who Fell Off Everest (Oct.) by Roger Hart or Men in Black Dresses: A Quest for the Future Among Wisdom-Makers of the Middle East (Nov.)the joint imprint will also publish visionary fiction in mass market, such as Jill Morrow’s Angel Caf (July).

Despite the large press connection, Paraview Publishing has continued to do small press titles through print-on-demand. It publishes out-of-print titles as POD paperbacks under its Paraview Special Editions imprint and uses POD and e-book formats for its Paraview Press line. The latter, as Huyghe explains, can be tricky. “We have to wait for the right title,” he says. “It has to be a book that would not fit with Paraview Pocket, yet it has to be good enough that it will sell well on its own.”

Next month Storey Publishing in North Adams, Mass., is introducing its first New Age series, to be published in collaboration with Kripalu Center for Yoga & Health in Lenox, Mass. According to Storey editorial director Deborah Balmuth, “Kripalu tries to bring yoga and meditation to a mainstream audience, and they’re right here. We like to work with authors in New England. For me, it feels like it fits with the values of Storey.” The first title in the series will be Will Yoga & Meditation Really Change My Life? edited by Stephen Cope. Balmuth says, “What’s neat about this particular book is that it’s really people’s personal stories and acceptance of self, moving from the inside out.”

Pendragon Publishing founder and managing director Kate Palandech came to New Age publishing after careers in law and investment analysis. “I thought this would be a nice niche,” she tells PW. “The Pendragon motto is to inspire the soul to soar. I’m really looking for titles that take the reader to someplace else.” Within two to three years the Chicago-based publisher would like to increase its list to 2030 books a year. Its first book, The Joy Formula for Health and Beauty (Sept.) by Laura Humphrey will launch with a combined hardcover and paperback first printing of 25,000 copies. Pendragon titles are available through Baker & Taylor.

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