From the Design Desk: ’Twas the Night Before Christmas

(After the original “’Twas the Night Before Christmas” poem by Clement Clarke Moore.)

’Twas the night before Christmas in the Publishing House
Not a designer was kerning or clicking a mouse
The galleys were stacked on desktops with care
In hopes that a Best Seller would soon be found there.
The Fellows were leaving—their projects in tow—
A blog post their last note before they would go.
And we with our layouts all gridded and tight
Had settled for the evening by the monitors’ pale light.
When out on Second Street there came such a roar—
The Giants returning for a post-season score?
Away to the third floor windows we dashed
To catch a glimpse of the players as they paraded on past.
The moon hanging low over the dark lapping Bay
Gave an aura of magic to the scene underway.
When what to our wondering eyes should appear
Not Sandoval or Posey or even Matt Cain
From all corners they came!
With their end sheets aflutter down the street these books pranced
With calendars and stationery and portable pets.
Paper flowers and sketchbooks, Wookiee Pies, too,
Kids’ books and craft books and True Blood food
Gem stones and Gem Pops and how to Be Good,
Paper dollies and Yetis, something personalized for you!
Maddie and Moomin (when Girl Meets Boy)
Polish kitchens, pissed-off kittens, and notepads of gold.
So Pretty! Crochet and a fierce Game of Thrones
Garlands, box of stickers, and how to Decorate homes.
Their colors they flashed, their foil stamps they gleamed
Head bands and tail bands and custom-made seams
Whether jacketed or case wrapped, with belly band ’round,
Paperback or flexi or hidden spiral bound
Boxed up or hanging or tied up with string
With photographs or drawings or modules that sing
Away they all flew like One Line a Day years
Into storefronts and museums, libraries and schools
Into hands of small children first learning to read,
Into stockings, onto e-readers, into bundles under trees.
And we returned to our desks, our year’s work now done
Wishing you a season of reading, each and every one.


Jennifer Tolo Pierce
Design Director

Jennifer Tolo Pierce

Jennifer Tolo Pierce is a Design Director at Chronicle Books with a love of all things words and images, particularly as they intersect in the realm of lifestyle and children’s publishing.
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