Keel Hunt
News Release
18 May 2004
Lightning Source, National Book Foundation and Ingram Book issue collection of essays on American literary heritage

LAVERNGE, TN- Lightning Source Inc.., a leading on-demand printer, and Ingram Book Group Inc., a leading wholesaler of trade books and related products, today announced that they are sending a special gift to leaders in the book industry.

National Book Award Classics contains twelve essays by Neil Baldwin as well as a comprehensive listing of all National Book Award-winning titles since 1950. With reflections on the work of Flannery O'Connor, William Carlos Williams, and Ralph Ellison, among others, the 122-page volume examines important titles that have helped shape American literature since World War II.

"As I consider these twelve brief essays," Neil Baldwin writes in his introduction, "I realize how they serve as a way into American writing-not the only way, of course, but one possible way." Baldwin, who late last year left the post he held at the Foundation since its founding in 1989, is an acclaimed author and biographer. His new book, The American Revelation: Ten Ideals That Shaped Our Country, is forthcoming from St. Martin's Press.

National Book Award Classics is being produced in limited quantities and is not available for sale. The essays found in the book were originally composed by Baldwin as editorial for Ingram Book Group's publication, Adv@nce e.letter, a regular electronic communication to its customer base. Though the book is primarily intended as a token of gratitude to leading book-industry practitioners, it also is meant to inspire leaders of the book business to preserve and promote these classics. National Book Award Classics demonstrates the role on-demand printing now plays in preserving important works of literature.

"Lightning Source currently prints eight National Book Award-winning titles, so we are pleased to offer this volume as a gift to others serving as stewards of our literary heritage," says J. Kirby Best, CEO of Lightning Source Inc. "National Book Award Classics not only promotes great American works and supports the National Book Foundation, but also demonstrates how Lightning Source's fast economical, printing services enable publishers to maintain a robust and diverse backlist."

Lightning Source Inc., a subsidiary of Ingram Industries Inc., provides a comprehensive suite of demand-driven publishing solutions for publishers. The company is revolutionizing the options available to the industry in the storage, management, and distribution of digital content. Lightning Source stores books and other information electronically and delivers them “on demand” in either traditional printed format or as e-Books in response to orders from booksellers, librarians, and publishers. Lightning Source has printed over 40,000,000 books for over 4,500 publishers around the world. For more information, visit our website at
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