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Posts tagged book publishing

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,...

Verso announces ebook bundling direct sales model
March 28, 2014 | 4:25 pm

Verso Books, "the largest independent, radical publishing house in the English-speaking world," has announced a new direct sales model from its website "in a way that will shake up how publishers relate to their readership, and help to support independent publishing. For all new titles and hundreds of recent ones, Verso will bundle the corresponding ebook with every print copy purchased, and offer free postage to anywhere in the world." Verso lists off its partners in the new platform, including "developers Fastest Crayon, payment provider Braintree, social DRM publisher Booxtream, and Verso¹s distributors ­ Random House in the US and Marston in the...

PW shares fast-growing indie publishers list: Not many dead
March 25, 2014 | 6:25 pm

Think that self-publishing, Amazon and ebooks between them are conspiring to kill off the brave independent publisher? Think again. Publishers Weekly recently shared its breakdown of the "11 companies that made PW’s list of fast-growing independent publishers in 2013," comprehensively demonstrating that there is no sense scapegoating Amazon for the state of the publishing sector. And its rundown also highlights some handy points on what it takes for indie publishers to survive and thrive in these digitally disrupted times. First in line, Oak Press LLC, which started as the personal platform of romance writer Bella Andre, "reported a spike in revenue...

Enders Analysis report reaches questionable conclusions on UK ebook growth
March 19, 2014 | 4:10 pm

A research report "Creative UK: Overview of the digital transformation of the UK creative economy," co-produced by Enders Analysis and Bain & Company, has concluded, in terms that The Bookseller has chosen to highlight, that "in volume terms, we expect e-books to become about 35% of the total market in the next two years, and then continue to rise only very slowly." Unless I'm not reading this report in enough detail, I'm not clear what data this conclusion is based on. The tone of the entire report is very anecdotal, rather than detail-driven, and there's no clear indication whether, for...

One survey on marketing for self-publishing
March 4, 2014 | 6:25 pm

With the glut of surveys, polls, and studies of all kinds on the mechanics and economics of self-publishing, it's no surprise to see another one released, especially when that one is backed by an entity with a strong interest in the business area surveyed. As recounted by a press release with the modest title "New Survey Reveals Best Practices in eBook Self-Publishing," this report, "based on a survey of over 300 independent authors ... identifies trends and best practices around planning, executing and measuring a successful promotion of an eBook." The survey was conducted by Sellbox, which "specializes in helping...

Does traditional publishing really confer legitimacy?
February 27, 2014 | 12:35 pm

UK self-published bestselling author Kerry Wilkinson, already cited in TeleRead for his Kindle Direct Publishing-driven success, has come out against - at least partly - the platform that built his reputation. Posting in The Bookseller's FutureBook blog, under the heading "Self-publishing changed my life, but my publisher grew my sales," he argues in the context of the "debate about traditional publishing versus self-publishing," and Hugh Howey's numbers on self-publishing and indie versus traditional publishing sales on Amazon, that the argument "isn't just sales – it's legitimacy." He continues: "It's the type of validity that means someone walks into a supermarket, sees...

Authors beware: Do you need to think like a publisher?
February 7, 2014 | 3:31 pm

That's a reasonable question to ask, authors, when you see an advertisement like this, offering you an online teleclass to "Think Like a Publisher," courtesy of Randy Davila, president of Hampton Roads Publishing and Hierophant Publishing, and based on his book, also called "Think Like A Publisher: 33 Essential Tips to Write, Promote, & Sell Your Book." "Have You Written A Book? Or is there a book inside you waiting to come out?" the blurb asks. "If you want to know what it takes to be a successful author in today’s rapidly changing publishing world, this is your chance to learn from...

Latest DBW Author Survey results give more info on authors’ publishing cycle
February 5, 2014 | 12:14 pm

The latest bulletin on the results of the 2014 Digital Book World and Writer’s Digest Author Survey, put together from the responses of over 9000 authors by Dana Beth Weinberg, Professor of Sociology at Queens College – CUNY, and DBW/Writer’s Digest, aims to demonstrate how writers are responding to the different opportunities of traditional, digital, and self-publishing. And Weinberg attempts to answer Hugh Howey's comments that the only true comparison between digital and traditional publishing opportunities for authors nowadays is one that takes into account the comparative size of the virtual or actual collective slushpiles in both domains. [caption id="" align="aligncenter"...

What is HarperCollins 360? And why has it taken this long to cross the Pond?
February 3, 2014 | 6:13 pm

harpercollins 360The UK Bookseller has made great play of the launch of HarperCollins 360 in the UK, which, it declares, is a "new venture" that "aims to publish in the UK HC titles that were previously only available abroad." And following the exact wording of The Bookseller article, you could be forgiven for thinking that HarperCollins 360 was seeing the light of day for the first time. So I'm not wasting my digital breath by reminding everyone that HarperCollins 360 was first announced in the U.S. two years ago. And it's taken this long for it to catch a flight at JFK...

Egmont Press thinks of the trees with ethical publishing
January 30, 2014 | 6:12 pm

I just received a paperback copy of A.A. Milne's Now We Are Six from the UK as a late sixth birthday present for my daughter. And as well as the great original E.H. Shepard illustrations, I found a round logo from the publisher, Egmont Press, stating that the company "is committed to Ethical Publishing." In other publishing contexts, ethical publishing refers to policies on plagiarism, acknowledgement of sources, etc. In Egmont's case, this is specifically about environmental awareness, workers' rights, and product safety. "We always know where the wood in our papers comes from," states the Egmont material. "It never comes from...

Quercus sale points to new wave of publishing M&A?
January 24, 2014 | 11:15 am

Many commentators took the announcement by Quercus Publishing plc that "it would be in the best interests of the Company's shareholders to seek potential offerors by means of a formal sale process" as an important early indicator of the strength of publishing industry disruption in 2014. After all, if the English publisher of Stieg Larsson's Millennium Trilogy can't make it in the new publishing era, who can? This immediately initiates at least one item of publishing M&A. As the formal notice states, "as a consequence of this announcement, an 'Offer Period' has commenced in respect of the Company in accordance with...

Study: Excessively Positive Reviews Hurt Conversions
January 9, 2014 | 4:45 pm

excessively positive reviewsA friend sent me this article today about a study of reviews and how they impact conversions (or sales). Their conclusion will come as no surprise to TeleRead readers. The study also found that positive star ratings didn’t influence sales. Only the content of the reviews impacted conversions. This might be because everybody has a different definition of what counts as a 5 or 0 star product, and the review itself contains the information to make that judgment for yourself. But here’s the thing… While the star ratings themselves didn’t influence sales, the variability in star ratings positively influenced sales. In other words, if a visitor sees nothing but...

A publisher unAmazons: The rights and wrongs
January 6, 2014 | 12:15 pm

Publishers Weekly just shared an article entitled "Life After Amazon," by Randall White, chairman, CEO, and president of Educational Development Corp. (EDC), on why he has elected to "to stop selling our Kane Miller and Usborne books on Amazon." His casus belli was that "I had long felt that the rapid growth of Amazon was bad news for the publishing industry. And I believed that Amazon was trying to gain control of publishing and other industries by making it impossible for other retailers to compete effectively." White's stated explanations mix, in my view, some very good and very indefensible points....

Book Patrol proclaims undeath of the book
December 24, 2013 | 7:36 pm

I'm not sure whether any of us pro-ebook pundits was actually expecting the death of the printed book, but it seems a lot of people thought we were. So much so that Book Patrol has decided it should proclaim that "The Worst is Over and The Book is not Dead." Rumors of the rumors of the death of the book were greatly exaggerated, maybe. I'm sure the book's relatives and family are breathing a sigh of relief outside the OR. So perhaps some people are jumping to correct a caricature impression here, but when it comes with such a funky infographic, who...

Literary sins you’ll love to commit, courtesy of Writer’s Digest
December 17, 2013 | 11:15 am

writer's digestPublishing Talk Daily, with its sometimes charmingly bizarre curatorial policy, has just picked up and headlined a piece from The Write Life dating back to August - but as it purports to be good writing advice and hasn't appeared on TeleRead yet, I thought I'd cover it. Entitled "The Worst Ways to Begin Your Novel: Advice from Literary Agents," the post describes some of the worst faux pas you can commit if you want the charmed circle of literary agents to mock and shun you. Which may not be a bad thing. Because many other great writers have done them...

A reply to Futurebook: Up with disruption!
December 14, 2013 | 6:25 pm

Over on Futurebook, Chris McCrudden has just published a piece entitled "Down with Disruption," taking issue with the applicability - and value - of the whole principle of digital disruption in publishing. Some of his insights make a lot of sense. Some I wouldn't touch with a barge pole. Read on below. Following the first Digital Publishing Xmas Fair, which apparently sought to bring digital startups and the publishing industry closer together, McCrudden took exception to the wholesale promotion of "disruptive technologies," arguing instead that publishing was being unbundled, with its various component disciplines being split off and transformed piecemeal. "The...

Decades late, the penny drops: IPA says publishing has an “image problem”
December 13, 2013 | 5:00 pm

As statements of the crashingly obvious go, the speech by Y.S. Chi, chairman of Elsevier and president of the International Publishers Association, to the UK Publishers Association’s International conference that publishers have an “image problem” takes some beating. As reported in The Bookseller, Chi said in his keynote that "We as an industry have an image problem . . . We are no longer the guardian of culture. we are now seen as greedy, as locking up knowledge." Well, I wonder where anyone got that impression? After all, the Apple price-fixing conspiracy would never have led anyone to think that. Or...

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