01 Dec 2016

Inside the Bestseller List with James Andrew Miller


James Andrew Miller (MBA 1988)

James Andrew Miller (MBA 1988) wrote his first bestselling book before coming to HBS: Running in Place, a behind-the-scenes look at the function—or dysfunction—of the US Senate based on his time as a congressional aide and speechwriter. The then 24-year-old didn’t know he had something big on his hands until his agent negotiated a publishing deal: “That’s your first peek at what the market potential is,” Miller says.

Miller went on to write Live from New York, a history of Saturday Night Live, and Those Guys Have All the Fun, an inside look at ESPN, with author Tom Shales—both bestsellers. “I love looking at organizations and studying and reporting on how they operate, what the culture is inside, and how the strategy changes over the course of a company’s life,” he says. “You can give readers a sense of what goes on behind the curtains.”

Miller’s new book fits that successful mold—but comes with a marketing challenge. Powerhouse is about Creative Artists Agency, a powerful force in the entertainment industry but a lesser-known brand than SNL or ESPN. He spent much of the fall on the road promoting his newest bestseller: “The book business isn’t what it used to be. So you have to go out there, and you have to sell.”

Return to The Year in Books 2016
Featured Alumni

Featured Alumni

Class of MBA 1988, Section A
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