Morna Conway is planning to be a public relations presence all the way from Taneytown to China.
Ms. Conway -- president of The Conway Group, a local marketing and public relations consulting firm -- has joined with Cassidy and Associates Inc. of New York to start distributing technical journals in China.
Cassidy is a book distribution company, representing American and European publishers in Asian nations.
"There is an exploding need for technical information," Ms. Conway said of China, a country she describes as "a mix of modern and traditional, medieval society."
"They are going from the 19th to the 21st century in one fell swoop."
Ms. Conway -- who advises many national medical, technological and scholarly associations on how best to distribute their information to the public -- said the venture was born while her company and Cassidy worked with a mutual client.
Through Cassidy, the Taneytown resident was invited to address a Chinese conference of 300 librarians about association publications in March.
"I was the first person they'd met who worked in that area," Ms. Conway said. "Association publications tend to be less expensive [than other technical publications], so the librarians were very excited to speak to me."
The first project for the new venture, Cassidy/Conway China, is the Beijing International Book Fair in September 1994.
Companies from all over the world will exhibit books and materials at the 80-day fair, which is one of the largest in the world, Ms. Conway said.
Because the average Chinese worker earns about $50 a month, the $500-to-$600 annual subscription price of most scholarly journals is usually out of their reach, Ms. Conway said.
However, a market still exists for the information within Chinese government agencies and libraries, she said.
The new partnership is also starting a program where associations could provide journals for free or a low cost, Ms. Conway said. For example, some association members may not want their free copy of the group's journal.
"We can arrange to have that journal shipped to a library in China," Ms. Conway said. "This is a way we can do some 'pro bono' work as well."
She said some of the journals will be translated into Chinese and others will be sent in English.