December 4 – December 11, 2008 Edition

HMH Publisher
Becky Saletan
Resigns Post

NEW YORK, NY/Authorlink News/12/2/08—Becky Saletan, the senior vice president and publisher of adult trade books at Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, has resigned, effective Dec. 10. according to Associated Press and other media sources. Her departure follows reports that the publisher has put a temporary freeze on manuscript acquisitions.

An HMH spokesman confirmed Saletan’s resignation but would not offer additional comments, and said the freeze did not apply to education and children’s titles, though he had earlier confirmed that the publisher has “temporarily stopped acquiring manuscripts.” Saletan, previously the publisher of Harcourt Trade, was named publisher of the combined trade divisions earlier this year after Houghton Mifflin bought Harcourt.

The publisher of one of HMH’s imprints, who called the company to confirm the freeze, was told that the story had been “blown out of proportion” and that there was “simply some belt-tightening going on.”

The private-equity firm Education Media and Publishing Group, which owns HMH, has acknowledged that competitors have said they are interested in buying the company. Thus, some speculate that the halt on manuscripts signals the sale of the company. However, a spokesman said that he had no knowledge that the company is about to be “shopped.”

Boston-based Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company is a global education leader and the world’s largest publisher of educational materials for pre-K–12 schools.