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Publishing

Charon Coin Press picks up horror anthology series
April 16, 2014 | 2:25 pm

cropped-charoncoin_banner_web1Charon Coin Press, an independent publisher of speculative fiction, has acquired several series of horror and dark fiction anthology properties previously held by Rymfire Books under Armand Rosamilia. These include the series State of Horror, Heavy Metal Horror, Post-Apocalyptic Raid, I, Executioner, Revenant 1 & 2, and Vermin. These, and will apparently be followed by others as the basis for the anthologies division of Charon Coin Press. Charon Coin Press founder Jerry Benns was apparently editor for the State of Horror anthologies since January 2014, and the acquisitions were part of a transition from editor to full-blown publisher. "I didn’t start out...

Wiley buys into executive e-learning with CrossKnowledge acquisition
April 16, 2014 | 12:25 pm

CrossKnowledgeEducation and learning specialist publisher John Wiley & Sons has announced the acquisition of CrossKnowledge, "a learning solutions provider focused on leadership and managerial skills development, for $175 million in cash."As well as ramping up the publishing consolidation and M&A trend another notch, this development also marks another step in convergence between specialist publishing companies and other non-publishing content businesses in related sectors. "In today's knowledge-based economy, organizations of all different shapes and sizes are looking to address skill, productivity and performance gaps through investment in their current workforce rather than hiring additional resources," said Steve Smith, President and CEO of...

GenCon 2013 Interview: M. Sechin Tower, Lead Developer at Exile Game Studio
April 15, 2014 | 9:00 pm

GEDC1287During GenCon 2013, I had the chance to speak with Sechin Tower, Lead Developer at Exile Game Studio and author of Mad Science Institute. I asked him about Exile’s use of Kickstarters for publishing its game products, and this is what he had to say. Me: Tell me what Exile’s been doing with Kickstarters. Sechin: Exile has been a recent comer to the Kickstarter market, but we’ve found it extremely useful to not only jumpstart a project that would take a little longer to get going, but to also get the word out and to give people a...

Norway pursues possible publisher cartel favoring own book chains
April 15, 2014 | 4:25 pm

Norway flagAfter the reports of Amazon entering the Swedish market amid possible restricted competition, now Scandinavian neighbor Norway has reportedly seen a crackdown on anti-competitive practices in the local book trade. According to the Norwegian press reports, the Norwegian Competition Authority (Konkurransetilsynet) has raided the offices of the country's big four publishing houses - Aschehoug, Cappelen, Gyldendal, and Schibsted - to investigate a possible cartel designed to restrict book supply to supermarkets and other outlets in favor of the publishers' own-branded book chains. Norway has a highly restricted publishing and book market that might facilitate such abuse. As per research in Regionalism...

That’s show biz: The value propositions of bookstores and movies
April 12, 2014 | 5:35 am

Sometimes when I’m trawling through the news, I run across unrelated posts that form an interesting juxtaposition. Here’s one concerning the very similar way that technological change has affected two entirely different industries. First, Dan Meadows (not a close relation as far as I know) has an interesting pair of posts relating to bookstores, publishers, and their respective value propositions. In the first one, he talks about bookstores and publishers in general. The services these institutions offer hasn’t changed—bookstores still have about the same number of books, publishers still offer the same services—but because people suddenly have even better...

Penguin Random House CEO makes great Dohle about growth, discoverability
April 11, 2014 | 2:25 pm

penguin random housePenguin  Random House CEO Markus Dohle has given an interview with Buchreport.express, which has been shared with the German press. In it, he gives a status report on the integration of Penguin and Random house, particularly in Europe, as well as the company's latest efforts in discoverability and other new horizons of publishing, which he describes as: "A lot of experiments, which also often fail ." Dohle says for one thing that recent signs of publishing M&A picking up should not be taken too seriously - yet. "Much will depend on whether the Penguin Random House fusion works. In the positive...

Penguin Random House UK CEO: You’ve never had it so good
April 7, 2014 | 10:25 am

publishersAs interviewed by Jennifer Rankin in The Observer, the Sunday imprint of the UK's Guardian, Tom Weldon, UK CEO of Penguin Random House, has some good things to say about the state of publishing. Good for publishers at least.  He declares that: ""Some commentators say the publishing industry is in enormous trouble today. They are completely wrong, and I don't understand that view at all." To judge from Weldon's comments, and some others quoted by Rankin in the article, publishing has actually managed the transition into the digital era.  "In the last four years, Penguin and Random House have had the...

Impacstory makes case for open access peer review journals
April 5, 2014 | 2:20 pm

The scholarly open access journal movement seems to be getting quite a bit of momentum behind it, and one instance of this is Impactstory, "a nonprofit, open-source webapp that helps scientists discover and share the full impact of their research." Now Impactstory has just shared a detailed breakdown of the case in favor of the "online-only, open access journals that cover many subjects and publish content based only on whether it is scientifically sound" - megajournals, in Impacstory's terminology. However, while all for the argument that megajournals "offer a path to a more efficient, faster, more open scholarly publishing world,"...

Publishers go off deep end, pay consultant to tell them what they want to hear
April 3, 2014 | 1:24 pm

Diogenes-statue-Sinop-enhancedSo, let me get this straight. Frank Luby, a consultant speaking at Digital Book World, says that e-books are more convenient than printed books, and therefore, they should cost more. Is this some kind of a joke? Apparently not; it was posted April 2, and people elsewhere seem to be taking it seriously. This is so wrong I hardly even know where to begin. It’s true that I can see how publishers would want to hear what this guy has to say. Basically, he’s telling them only what they already believe themselves. And it’s a belief they...

Jonathan Cape holds open submissions month: Do they know something we don’t?
April 2, 2014 | 4:25 pm

Venerable, highly reputable UK publishing imprint Jonathan Cape has announced that it will be throwing open the doors for the whole of June this year, inviting open submissions of fiction " from new writers of high calibre and imagination." This ought to be of interest to any aspirant or even established writers. But it also invites some interesting speculation - which could be on the mark, or a shot in the dark. You decide. Jonathan Cape originally opened in the 1920s, and boasted writers such as Ian Fleming and James Joyce in its prime. Part of Chatto and Windus from 1969,...

Book editors really do edit books. Really! They’ll tell you so themselves!
March 30, 2014 | 3:18 am

find-an-editor1What does it say about what people think of you if you have to write a lengthy editorial insisting that, no, really, you actually do do your job? That’s how a piece by book editor Barry Harbaugh in The New Yorker comes off. Entitled, “Yes, Book Editors Edit,” it insists that, despite Amazon claiming otherwise, book editors at major publishers actually do edit books. The fact that this piece had to be written in the first place possibly says more than does the entire piece itself. Especially since there are just a few problems with it. ...

Amazon doesn’t know it’s supposed to fail
March 29, 2014 | 9:00 am

I happened upon a Bookseller piece by Agent Orange (who I’ve mentioned before) noting that UK publishers have been making a lot of noise about the putative foolishness of Amazon’s plans. It’s funny how they seem to keep doing that, and Amazon never seems to pay any attention, isn’t it? Agent Orange notes: It is depressing how often we have been here before. Publishers pour scorn and disregard on Amazon. Amazon presses on with its plans regardless (announcing it is massively expanding in the UK this coming year) and a year or two later publishers discover...