MEDIA CONNECT Interview Series: Rachel Fershleiser from Tumblr

The following interview with Rachel Fershleiser appeared in the premier edition of the MEDIA CONNECT newsletter. To view our summer newsletter or to subscribe for future editions, click here.


RachelFMC:  What book are you reading right now?

RF:  “Love Me Back” by Merritt Tierce. It’s not out til September, but I heard her read at the National Book Foundation’s 5 Under 35 event and I was blown away. I love books about interesting women making potentially bad decisions while they’re figuring themselves out.


MC:  When you’re not at the office, what do you like to do?

RF:  I like to cook (especially soup), grow illegal tomatoes on my fire escape, and take long walks around New York.

MC:  What’s your biggest pet peeve when working with publicists?

RF:  I hate getting mass emails that clearly have nothing to do with my taste or my job here. No, I don’t want to interview your conservative economics expert for my YA book blog. You know that already. Communicate like a person, please.


MC:  What is one of the best success stories you’ve experienced working with a publicist?

RF:  Launching the Reblog Book Club with Rainbow Rowell’s team at St. Martins was a dream. We all loved the book, the process was creative and collaborative, and everyone was focused on creating the best possible experience for readers.


MC:  What’s your favorite part about working at your job?

RF:  I love the Tumblr community. This network is over 180 million blogs, but somehow it’s retained a personality — passionate, creative, nerdy, kind, enthusiastic. We don’t like a book, we LOVELOVELOVE a book. We treat authors like rock stars. We respond to our favorite works of art by making more works of art.


MC:  What’s one piece of advice you have for book publicists?

RF:  Don’t shout into the void. I know you’re busy, but building meaningful relationships will always serve you better than blasting willy-nilly.


MC:  What is the strangest/craziest tactic someone has used to get your attention?

RF:  Riverhead Books’ publicity department is crazy in the best way. They’ve sent me a wig, a plastic fork, a bottle of bourbon with cigarettes and red lipstick. But the wacky ideas are always deeply rooted in what makes each book special, a way in to the author’s point of view or teasing an event with a wonderful sense of community.



Related: MEDIA CONNECT Interview Series: Leigh Newman From


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