— Tim O’Brien, The Things They Carried (via 4mbivalent)
Every week we like to share a glimpse into life at HMH with our staff survey. Today Bruce Nichols, V.P., Publisher, Adult and Reference, shares his perspective.
What do you do here at HMH?
I am the Publisher for the Adult and Reference group in the Trade Division.
What is your favorite HMH book of all time?
Ooh, tough question, and it’s like asking a parent to name a favorite child. But if you put a gun to my head, I would probably say Tim O’Brien’s THE THINGS THEY CARRIED.
What is the last non-HMH book that you read?
Henning Mankell’s THE DOGS OF RIGA.
What’s your favorite at-work diversion?
Checking the comedy pages on the Huffington Post.
Can you share a little anecdote about the office?
We have a lot of videoconferences. Blackberries cause interference in those calls. The amount of time we spend asking everyone to turn off the devices, and/or move them away from the conference tables, probably adds up to a full work week per year.
Do you have a favorite poet/poem that has special meaning to you?
Philip Larkin’s “Far Out,” which is a reminder that what is unknown will always vastly exceed what is known.
What was the last book you read that wasn’t set in the U.S.?
See above, THE DOGS OF RIGA.
What’s your favorite word?
Anything with interesting onomatopoeia. Like “eviscerate.”
What’s your biggest food guilty pleasure?
Is Scotch a food?
If you could jump into The Lord of the Rings, which character would you be?
Treebeard, just so I would know what his voice really sounds like.