A Globe and Mail profile of Doug Pepper, the incoming president and publisher of McClelland & Stewart, offers a few tantalizing hints about the changes Pepper has in store for the company. The new buzz-word around the University Avenue office is apparently going to be “non-fiction.” Simon Houpt writes: “Pepper wants to back books that make news, that get the country talking, that create conversation.” Pepper, interviewed in New York City, where he has spent the last six years as vice-president and senior editor at Crown Publishing Group, even hints that he may create an imprint to market the company’s non-fiction acquisitions. “Nothing says ‘growth’ like another imprint,” he opines. The other new buzz-word around the office will be “proactive.” Pepper is adamant that the staff at M&S will not be “sitting there waiting for agents to come up with ideas and send proposals in, but watching the news and reading the newspaper and going to dinner parties and hearing what people have to say and then saying, ‘Hey, there’s a book here,’ then finding the right writer for it.” Apparently no editor in Canada has ever tried this strategy.
Globe and Mail article on Doug Pepper