AWP: Distinguished Editors

Thursday February 9, 2017
03:00 pm

Tags: Event


This is an exclusive opportunity to gain invaluable insight from four of literary publishing’s most prolific and successful editors—Jonathan Galassi, President and Publisher at Farrar, Straus and Giroux; Nan Graham, Publisher and Sr. VP at Scribner; Erroll McDonald, VP and Executive Editor at Knopf/Doubleday; and Daniel Halpern, Founding Editor of Ecco Press at HarperCollins. Combined, these titans of publishing have almost a century of experience to share with you!


*This event will take place in Washington D.C. at the Association of Writers & Writing Programs Conference in Ballroom B, Washington Convention Center, Level Three.

Daniel Halpern is publisher and president of Ecco, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers. He is the author of nine collections of poetry, most recently Something Shining. For 25 years, Halpern edited the literary magazine Antaeus, which he founded in Tangier with Paul Bowles. Halpern is the editor or co-editor of anthologies including The Art of the Tale; The Art of the Story; On Nature: Nature, Landscape, and Natural History (with Dan Frank); and Reading the Fights with Joyce Carol Oates. Halpern has received numerous grants and awards, including fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation and the National Endowment for the Arts, and the 1993 PEN Publisher Citation. In 2009, he received the first “Editor’s Award,” given by Poets and Writers, and in 2015, he won The Maxwell Perkins Award for Distinguished Achievement in the Field of Fiction.


Jonathan Galassi was born in Seattle, Washington, in 1949. He worked at Houghton Mifflin and Random House before joining Farrar, Straus and Giroux, where he has been president and publisher since 2002. Among the authors he has worked with at FSG are: Frank Bidart, Jeffrey Eugenides, Jonathan Franzen, Thomas L. Friedman, Louise Glück, Denis Johnson, Jamaica Kincaid, Alice McDermott, George Packer, Marilynne Robinson, Seamus Heaney, Mario Vargas Lllosa, and Derek Walcott. Mr. Galassi has published three books of poems and has translated the Italian poets Eugenio Montale and Giacomo Leopardi. His novel Muse was published by Knopf in June 2016.


Nan Graham has worked in publishing since graduating from Yale University in 1977—for five years at Pantheon Books, for ten years at Viking Penguin where she was the Executive Editor, and for fifteen years as the Editor-in-Chief of Scribner before becoming Scribner’s publisher in 2013.


She has edited writers of fiction, sociology, history and psychology. She has worked on many memoirs, including Jeannette Walls’s The Glass Castle, Mary Karr’s The Liars’ Club, Frank McCourt’s Angela’s Ashes, and Hillary Rodham Clinton’s Living History. Her other non-fiction authors include National Book Award winner, The Noonday Demon: An Atlas of Depression and National Book Critics Circle Award winner Far from the Tree by Andrew Solomon, and Siddhartha Mukherjee’s Pulitzer Prize winner, The Emperor of All Maladies: a Biography of Cancer and his second book The Gene: An Intimate History.


She has edited Don DeLillo for twenty-five years and Stephen King for twenty years. Her other fiction authors include Annie Proulx, Amy Hempel, Colm Toibin, Ann Beattie, M. L. Stedman, Rachel Kushner, Miranda July, Dana Spiotta, and Anthony Doerr.


Erroll McDonald a trustee of PEN America, is a Vice President, Executive Editor in the Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group of Penguin Random House. Among the authors he has edited and published are: James Baldwin, Italo Calvino, Friedrich Durenmatt, Henry Louis Gates, Jr., Michael R. Gordon, Kazuo Ishiguro, Randall Kennedy, Fran Lebowitz, Arthur Levitt, Wangari Matthai (Winner of the Nobel Peace Prize), Toni Morrison (Winner of the Nobel Prize in Literature), Bao Nihn, Ngugi wa Thiongo, Pier Paolo Pasolini, Richard Posner,  Salman Rushdie, President Nicolas Sarkozy, Chancellor Helmut Schmidt, and Wole Soyinka (Winner of the Nobel Prize in Literature). McDonald graduated from Yale College summa cum laude with an A.B. in English with Honors, and holds an MBA from Columbia Business School. He has been a lecturer at Yale and an adjunct professor at Columbia.