Hodder publicity director Hood to retire

Hodder publicity director Hood to retire

Hodder & Stoughton publicity director Kerry Hood has announced her retirement and will step down from her role in May after more than 20 years at the firm.

Starting out at Gollancz and Sidgwick & Jackson, Hood moved to Hodder in 1997. During her time at the publisher, she helped nurture the careers of its biggest brand novelists including Stephen King, Jodi Picoult and John Connolly alongside non-fiction stars such as Sir Ranulph Fiennes, Kate Adie and Alan Titchmarsh.

Hood said Hodder has been like “a second family” to her rather than just an employer. She explained: “I have had the greatest pleasure in working for, and alongside, some of the best people in publishing – both here and with the wider Hachette group.

“I can’t think of another trade that would have given me more pleasure and my authors have been rewarding, interesting, and entertaining. I have learned from each of them. I shall miss them, my colleagues, the booksellers, journalists and all who have made my job so brilliant – and what a time we have had.”

Hodder m.d. Carolyn Mays said Hood had “literally gone the extra mile” to support her authors around the UK. She went on: “She was a stalwart companion to the remaining Fat Lady, Clarissa Dixon Wright, over the course of her Hodder publications, and was partner in crime to Sara Paretsky, Susan Jeffers, Neale Donald Walsch and Christy Moore. She has shivered on touchlines, worn wigs, ghost hunted and sung in public - which delighted her listeners but not her. There is no one more devoted to her authors and colleagues than Kerry, and we will miss her presence in our Hodder lives enormously.”

Communications director Eleni Lawrence paid tribute to Hood’s “passion for books, creative campaigns, meticulous author care, and sheer hard graft.”

She added: “I know she will be much missed by the wider industry too, especially the journalists, booksellers and literary festivals up and down the country whom she has always championed through brilliant author events. We were so proud to see independent booksellers crown Kerry their Publicist of the Year award at the BA conference two years ago. In addition to creating numerous bestsellers over the years, she has been an amazing mentor to so many publicists, myself included, who have been lucky to learn from the very best.”

Hodder has not yet announced Hood's successor to the role.