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Topical Tuesdays – The Making of a Bestseller: from the Publisher’s Desk with Jane Lawson

11 JANUARY 2022


Zoom Webinar

The Topical Tuesdays series sees guests speakers from the St Paul’s Community share their take on the current environment.

Which book will be the Bestseller of 2022? How does an editor choose what to publish? What does a literary agent do? What is the relationship between author and editor? How does a book get its cover? How does a book land a major prize? How does it get placed in the window of your local independent bookshop and not on the back-shelf? Why is Richard Osman still No. 1? Does anyone ever read the book pages anymore and is it true that if the Guardian doesn’t review a book, it doesn’t exist?

These and other esoteric questions will be touched upon in a behind-the-scenes publishing talk by Current Parent and Penguin’s Fiction Editorial Director, Jane Lawson.


Jane Lawson, Fiction Editorial Director for the imprint Doubleday at Penguin Random House, has been an editor for twenty-five years. Among the acclaimed and bestselling books she has acquired and published are Sunday Times bestsellers THE BOOK THIEF by Markus Zusak and THE LIGHT BETWEEN OCEANS by M L Stedman; Baillie Gifford non-fiction bestselling prize-winner THE FIVE: THE UNTOLD STORIES OF THE WOMEN KILLED BY JACK THE RIPPER by Hallie Rubenhold; the Booker-shortlisted GREAT CIRCLE by Maggie Shipstead and BRICK LANE by Monica Ali; the Fiction Pulitzer prize winner THE ORPHAN MASTER’S SON by Adam Johnson; Sunday Times bestseller RODHAM by Curtis Sittenfeld; Japanese sleeper-hit THE TRAVELLING CAT CHRONICLES and Indian blockbuster Q&A by Vikas Swarup (later filmed as SLUMDOG MILLIONAIRE). She has also commissioned translations from fiction in Chinese, Arabic, Japanese, German, Spanish and Italian.

It is free to register for any of our virtual events. However, if you wish to express your appreciation for the programme, please make a donation to the Shaping our Future bursary fund and help talented boys benefit from a St Paul’s education, please click here.

Suggested donation – £10 per household.

Find out more about St Paul’s Topical events here

The views, information, or opinions expressed in this event are solely those of the individuals involved and do not necessarily represent those of St Paul’s School and its employees. These events are available for private, non-commercial use only – you may not edit, modify or redistribute.

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