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Posts tagged publishing

Hugh Howey corrects just about every assumption you ever had about the book trade
October 29, 2014 | 12:25 pm

Hugh HoweyWhat could change just about every aspect of the current disputes about digital disruption in the book trade? The revelation that the key traditional businesses are not being disrupted at all, right? Well, that may be overstating the case, but not too far - at least according to Hugh Howey. Under the headline "Two Important Publishing Facts Everyone Gets Wrong," he's put together an analysis, with a lot of its data drawn, interestingly, from the New Republic, to demonstrate that: "Almost everything being said about publishing today is predicated on two facts that are dead wrong. The first is that publishers...

Morning Links: Apple introduces new iPads. Are publisher advances critical?
October 17, 2014 | 9:00 am

ipad mini vs ipad airApple Introduces New iPads, Macs (USA Today) Apple offered few surprises but plenty of new hardware and software on Thursday. *** iOS or OS X? It Doesn't Matter... (GigaOM) Apple signaled this change a few years ago and now you can see the fruits of its labor: It matters less if you use a low-cost phone, mid-priced tablet or expensive computer to get things done thanks to hardware, software and the cloud. *** Are Publisher Advances Truly Critical? (The Digital Reader) The argument against Amazon seems to rest on the proposition that if trad-pubs aren’t awarded excess returns, over and above the actual free-market value of their...

Laura Fredericks on the future of publishing
October 12, 2014 | 3:30 pm

Laura Fredericks, founder and CEO of the writing community Describli, has put up a very interesting guest post on the future of publishing at the Independent Publishing Magazine - the same platform that had the good taste to commend me and Chris Meadows as shakers in the evolution of the industry. And she is not exactly recommending the status quo ante disruption. In fact, her call - and warning - for both publishers and writers is: connect (or be damned). Fredericks's take is that although "the future of publishing remains uncertain," the "even more direct connection between writers, readers, publishers, and publicity"...

Morning Roundup: Apple family or Amazon family? Best literary TED Talks
October 6, 2014 | 9:00 am

apple vs amazonAre You an Apple Family or an Amazon Family? (GigaOM) Both Amazon and Apple have new programs that let family members share downloaded content. Which one makes more sense for your family? *** Publishing Battle Should be Covered, Not Joined (NYT) Many readers have complained to me that The Times is demonizing Amazon and siding with publishers and those authors who support them. A pro-Amazon author charges that the paper is spewing propaganda and, on Twitter, asks for a public editor “intervention.” *** Ten Best Literary TED Talks of the Year (Book Riot) Every year on Book Riot we’ve put together a round-up of our favorite...

David Gaughran catches the stench wafting from the publishing industry
September 23, 2014 | 6:00 pm

David GaughranNo one could accuse David Gaughran of being afraid to take a stand, or of supine impartiality in his readiness to listen to every side. And the author of Let's Get Digital and Let's Get Visible doesn't leave much room for ambiguity in his latest title: "Publishing Is Rotten To The Core." Admittedly, this is a post as much about media bias as about the publishing industry itself - or rather, the partiality of mainstream media to anti-Amazon, pro-trad publishing stories - as it is about conditions where print meets paper. But there's plenty to go around nonetheless. Gaughran doesn't mince words...

Morning Roundup: Publishing is rotten. Are Amazon exclusives the next big challenge?
September 23, 2014 | 9:00 am

Amazon exclusivesPublishing is Rotten to the Core (David Gaughran) The most egregious behavior continually gets overlooked, ignored, and swept under the carpet, in favor of pursuing pet targets. *** Are Amazon Exclusives the Next Big Challenge for Everybody Else in Publishing? (The Shatzkin Files) Somebody smarter (or more patient about wading through data) than I am could probably figure out how far along this bifurcation is already, but Amazon is doing its very best to build a body of content that is desirable and available from nobody else but them. *** Evernote for Mac Rebuilds the Notes Editor, Improves Tables, and More (Lifehacker) Evernote released an update to...

Planet Agent’s guide to UK agents already in firing line
September 15, 2014 | 10:25 am

agent hunter transparency-index-graphic1The UK "database of all UK literary agents, their agencies and publishers" Agent Hunter has released research, summarized in the form of the infographic included here, on the state of the UK agenting environment that has already attracted complaints and objections. As quoted by The Bookseller, the president of the Association of Authors Agents, Sam Edenborough, has protested that Agent Hunter is making “shrill criticisms.” Agent Hunter's claim is that "We’ve taken the massive amount of data on our site and produced the first ever comprehensive analysis of Planet Agent." The negative comments in the analysis focus on the exclusivity, lack...

Weekend Links: Curious case of Ellora’s Cave. Kobo Aura HD vs Aura H2O
September 14, 2014 | 9:56 am

kobo aura h2oFour Books That Changed How I View the World (Book Riot) Whenever I open a book to read, I do it with a wish that when I reach the end, its story will have left me a different person. Here are four books that changed how I view the world. *** The Curious Case of Ellora's Cave (Dear Author) Long before there was the Kindle, long before self publishing, long before the emergence of Fifty Shades, a digital first publisher by the name of Ellora’s Cave began to deliver sexy reads that would transform the face of romance publishing. *** Barnes & Noble Treads Water (PW) There...

Publishing venture capital style – or, how most publishers throw money at the wall to see what sticks
September 4, 2014 | 4:27 pm

[caption id="" align="aligncenter" width="461"] Thanks to "The Wolf of Wall Street" for this inside shot from a typical Manhattan publisher's commissioning meeting ...[/caption] This post comes courtesy of some comments by publisher Hugh Andrew, Managing Director of Birlinn Limited, in the course of the debate on the future for writers after the Scottish independence referendum at the Edinburgh International Book Festival - as well as from my former life in Hong Kong as Managing Editor of the Asian Venture Capital Journal. Hugh Andrew pointed out how most publishing is a matter of paying off a plethora of loss-making works with a few...

HarperCollins UK goes direct-to-consumer: Is Amazon worried yet?
September 1, 2014 | 2:25 pm

News that might just have Jeff Bezos quaking in his boots - though don't bank on it - is that HarperCollins in the UK has introduced across-the-board direct sales for its books, including hard copy as well as ebooks. The ebooks have to be downloaded and read on HarperCollins's dedicated HC Reader app (also available for Kindle Fire, cheekily enough), in conjunction with a HarperCollins account. The ecommerce and payment platform for HarperCollins is provided by Digital River, which was behind the recent dedicated websites for its C.S. Lewis and Narnia properties. (Oops, wasn't C.S. Lewis once an author rather than...

No fault in Penguin Random House stars as Bertelsmann books a big win
September 1, 2014 | 12:25 pm

BertelsmannPenguin Random House demonstrated once again what a cozy, fusty, highbrow, unworldly world modern publishing is by bringing home the fat juicy bacon for parent Bertelsmann. And it was all in our stars. As The Hollywood Reporter ... um ... reported, "John Green’s unstoppable young adult melodrama The Fault in Our Stars lifted the fortunes of German media giant Bertelsmann, which controls the book’s publisher Penguin Random House. Sales of the The Fault in Our Stars novel spiked ahead of the release of Josh Boone’s feature film adaptation ... The book sold more than four million copies in print and...

The Gothic blue book: Time for a revival?
August 31, 2014 | 12:04 pm

An enterprising independent publisher, Burial Day Books, recently launched a submissions drive for the fourth in an anthology series that draws on the tradition of the Gothic blue book, a form of short-to-medium Gothic and horror story imprint that flourished briefly at the end of the 18th century and into the 19th. According to Burial Day, Gothic blue books were: ... abridgements of full-length Gothic novels. The subjects of these books fell into one of two categories; the first being set in a monastery or convent and the second being set in a castle. In terms of the physicality of the...