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Posts tagged Random House

A dirty secret of big publishing: More fact-checking needed. Fixes on the way?
June 24, 2015 | 1:10 pm

SiliconJungleWhen I worked on The Silicon Jungle, I didn’t just benefit from a keen-eyed copy editor at Ballantine Books. Sentence by sentence, a computer consultant vetted me. A few years later I published another popular-level technical book at another big house. The amount spent on professional fact-checking? $0, despite the intricacies of the topic. Had I written that Marconi invented integrated circuits, it just might have shown up in the book despite the literary talents of the brilliant development editor. Yes, I’m indulging in hyperbole. But you get the idea. Unfortunately, the second house is far more typical of publishing these days, with book...

Amazon and Penguin Random House agree to contract
June 18, 2015 | 1:08 pm

Amazon has signed a new contract with Penguin Random House, Publishers Weekly reports. Penguin Random House represents the last of the Big Five (nee Big Six) publishers and the last of the “Agency Five” (well, the Penguin half does, anyway) to agree to new terms. This brings an end to any possibility that there could be a repeat of the months-long Hachette unpleasantness. It’s impossible to know whether Amazon or PRH got the better deal since the terms are not being disclosed, but both sides seem to have learned well the lessons of all the fireworks over the...

Editor shares some publisher love
January 12, 2015 | 4:28 pm

Daniel Menaker, "longtime book editor," has shared a paean in Slate "In praise of the publishers who move units and readers." And after the "15 years I was at Random House, almost five of them as editor-in-chief," he's naturally in a position to know whereof he speaks. Intimately. Cosily. Among many objections that Menaker has to the zeitgeist is the opinion Barry Eisler, who told the Guardian that the signatories of the Authors United letter to Amazon were in “the top 1 percent” who "have no interest at all in improving publishing for everyone. Only in preserving it for themselves." Menaker insists...

Morning Roundup: OSX 10.10 Yosemite; Amazon monopsony and more
June 4, 2014 | 10:23 am

Apple took the wraps off of OS X at the WorldWide Developer's Conference today, dubbed "Yosemite." It'll feature a new interface with elements of iOS 7's "flat" design and color scheme, new interface, updates to iCloud and Mail, features to sync iOS and OS X devices, and more....

Bertelsmann CEO gives insights into European media moves
April 29, 2014 | 6:16 pm

Bertelsmann Penguin Random House welcome bannerThe Financial Times has aired an exclusive interview with Thomas Rabe, CEO of Bertelsmann - Europe's biggest media group, and one of its largest family-owned privately held businesses. Oh, and part owner alongside Pearson of Penguin Random House. The Bertelsmann CEO admits that his charge may not only be disadvantaged compared to the likes of Google and Amazon, but also starting from a trailing position - which, however, has recently improved. "I honestly think that we have caught up massively in the past 15 to 18 months,” he says. This situation may be partly the result of the group's response to...

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...

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,...

Humble Bundle about to launch third e-book bundle
March 18, 2014 | 12:10 pm

The launch of the new Humble Bundle is still just under two hours away (until then, you have one last chance to snag some terrific Android games, nine of them for under $4—Zombie Gunship is some crazy fun!) but Publishers Weekly has just revealed what the new one is going to be. It’s going to be Humble’s first e-books and audiobooks bundle. It’s not entirely clear from the PW article which books will have audiobooks and which will just be e-books, but it’s going to include some great titles: the audiobook of Homeland by Cory Doctorow, financed by Doctorow...

David Gaughran comments on Random House Writers’ Academy
January 16, 2014 | 2:48 pm

David GaughranI contacted self-publishing savant David Gaughran for his opinion on the recent developments at Random House Writers' Academy, and its current "Creative Writing for Beginners" course, which aims to equip aspiring writers with the basic tools to begin realizing their vision - for £499 ($821). This was his response, and is published here with his agreement: I'm pretty dismayed by this development. It sounds pricey for an online course, but the real worry is the complete disregard Random House seems to have for conflict-of-interest issues. It's bad enough that Penguin Random House already owns the biggest vanity press in the world without starting...

Random House figures out another way to make you pay them for your own writing
January 9, 2014 | 3:25 pm

Not content to have Author Solutions on board to take care of all its author-charging needs, Penguin Random House has apparently decided to go direct, with the launch, via the UK Writer's Academy, of the online " Creative Writing for Beginners" course. Offered at a price of £499 ($821), with an Early Bird Rate of £350 ($576), this course will run from March 14th, 2014 for 10 weeks of online interactive tuition which will, it is claimed, equip participants with "the essential skills and techniques you need to get started writing fiction." The Writer's Academy makes very positive play of the fact...

The death of André Schiffrin and Big Publishing
December 2, 2013 | 12:30 pm

The demise of a force in American literary publishing, André Schiffrin, in Paris at age 78, offers a moment to reflect on how Big Publishing works, and exactly how deep is its true reverence for the cultural and intellectual values that it wheels out periodically to defend copyright extension, DRM, the Apple price-fixing cartel, and its other self-interested curbs on free expression. For the former chief editor of Pantheon Books was the focus of a storm over editorial integrity versus commercial pressures when he was fired by the company's parent Random House in 1990, in a move which many authors...

Daniel Menaker reports from publishing purgatory
November 20, 2013 | 4:59 pm

publishingAuthors, if you ever feel that publishers are your last rocks and refuges in the Amazon Apocalypse; politicians, if you ever felt moved to listen to another copyright extension or DCMA lobbyist; booksellers, if you ever felt that the big guys had your back - read on below. Because Daniel Menaker bares all, in [easyazon-link asin="0547794231" locale="us"]My Mistake: A Memoir[/easyazon-link], ­published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. It's not a pretty sight, I warn you. But having committed the mortal sin of working in not just one publishing company, but several, he at least has, Dante-like, come back from Hell to walk...

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