Wait an Apple-Picking Minute, or, News for October at PQL

When October rolls around and fall is in the air, I can help but think about those autumnal pastimes stereotypical of the season. Hay rides, leaf-peeping expeditions, even pumpkin spice latte consumption are all such typical seasonal activities you can’t help but feel nostalgic at the thought.

Another nostalgia-inducing activity is apple picking. I have distinct memories of going as a child to one or another of the several orchards in the area and being taught how to identify the apples ripe for picking, and how to gently detach them from the trees. It strikes me now that the whole exercise was more than just a method of procuring the apples that would inevitably be baked into my mom’s delicious apple pie or apple crisp. The lessons learned on an apple picking expedition are applicable to a wide range of tasks, even, I like to think, book publishing.

small tree

Every day I am faced with a veritable orchard full of stories—from acquired books that I’m working on to manuscripts in my inbox to queries from authors seeking Recommender Grants. Some need a little more time and nurturing before they’re ready to be picked.  Some are ripe—bright, bold, polished to a shine—and ready to be gently plucked from the branch.

The more experienced I get, the more I realize that a good editor knows when to pick, but a better editor knows when to wait and give nature a little more time to do its thing.

What’s happening this month…


The printing continues apace! The press is a-humming with production of Mark Huebner’s wordless novel, Let Go, on the docket. It’s a beautiful story meticulously composed of linocuts, which follows a laid off ad man who must navigate a blizzard and the deadweight of his memories as he struggles toward an uncertain future.

Also in varying stages of preparation are Susan Glickman’s Artful Flight, and Carmine Starnino’s The Essential John Glassco. Stay tuned to hear when you might be able to add these gems to your collection.


Cover image of The Artist and the Assassin by Mark Frutkin

Join us for the launch of Mark Frutkin’s thrilling historical novel The Artist and the Assassin, a fictionalized take of the life of the famous—and infamous—painter, Caravaggio. It’s a not-to-be-missed story for any visual art lover. The event will take place via Zoom on Thursday, October 7 at 7:30 p.m. For access details, send me an email!

In the world.

October 6 is Mad Hatter Day, which is not only a great day to celebrate the literary genius of Lewis Carroll, but also a day to embrace general silliness.

October 15 is Boss’s Day. Show a little appreciation to all the bosses who go above and beyond to make your work life great!

October 16 is Dictionary Day. Technically it’s celebrated on Noah Webster’s birthday and celebrates his American Dictionary, but we think the rules can be stretched to allow your preferred tome, whether it be the venerable OED or a tattered Scrabble dictionary.

From the porcupette’s corner…


September felt very much like a month to focus on promotional efforts. From preparing event materials and getting ready for virtual launches to sending out review queries and getting the ball rolling for Spring 2022 books, the task of spreading the word is truly never ending! This month, I’m learning how we might beef up our promotional efforts heading into the holiday season with a series of webinars. It would appear that the holidays actually start in October—who knew?


Thanks, as always, for stopping by to see what we’ve been working on. We hope you’ve found something to be excited about!


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One Response to Wait an Apple-Picking Minute, or, News for October at PQL

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The Porcupine's Quill would like to acknowledge the support of the Ontario Arts Council and the Canada Council for the Arts for our publishing program. The financial support of the Government of Canada through the Canada Book Fund (CBF) is also gratefully acknowledged.