Writers have differing views of publishers. George Bernard Shaw once famously dismissed them all as “rascals…without being either good businessmen or fine judges of literature. The one service they have done me is to teach me to do without them”. My view of them, as an author of academic books, has generally been very different. I have greatly appreciated my relationships with several publishers and editors over the past 40 years. Almost without exception, they have been friendly, wise and helpful. It has been pleasant, too, to talk about one’s work with people outside the academy, who can bring a refreshing perspective to it. Authorship is a lonely occupation. We need help, encouragement, constructive criticism from people in the “real” world – and the occasional free lunch.
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