This is an experiment. Kath and I are going to attempt to keep you somewhat updated re: happenings in the publishing industry, but we’d like to do it without sacrificing an enormo chunk of personal writing time. So no promises on the longevity of this endeavor; we’ll see how we do.
Not all of this news is going to be “breaking,” but we hope all of it is somewhat interesting. Oh, and not all of it will necessarily be about business; we reserve the right to throw in niblets from where we like, when we like. Because.
Helpful? Entertaining? Yawn-o-licious? Let us know what you think!
From The Wall Street Journal: CBS Corp.’s Simon & Schuster book-publishing arm next month will launch an Internet book channel called Bookvideos.tv that will be hosted on YouTube.com and other video-sharing sites. For an industry constantly held back by scant marketing dollars, the plan represents a new and inexpensive digital way to promote books and try to turn their authors into brands.
Guardian Unlimited predicts the death of the printed author: Books coverage is being slashed in major US papers. The New York Times suggests that literary blogs aren’t just picking up the slack from print reviews, they’re making them redundant.
From Editorial Anonymous: Ooo, a hot new trend! Pirates are all the rage!…in bookstores. Which means that for publishers, who are looking at what the market will be like in a couple years, pirates are essentially over.
Also from EA: A First Lines Contest. Right now.
From Times Online: Orion Books makes a controversial decision: To howls of indignation from literary purists, a leading publishing house is slimming down some of the world’s greatest novels. Tolstoy, Dickens and Thackeray would not have agreed with the view that 40 per cent of Anna Karenina, David Copperfield and Vanity Fair are mere “padding”, but Orion Books believes that modern readers will welcome the shorter versions.
From Publisher’s Weekly: Penguin’s New American Library division is adding a new imprint, Obsidian Mysteries, which will now house all of NAL’s mystery titles. NAL has published mysteries for years, and publisher Kara Welsh said, “This seemed like the perfect time to bring them all together under one imprint.”
Nora Roberts makes Time Magazine’s list of the top 100 people who shape our world.
From Library Journal: Sexy librarian alert: in what is sure to boost the profession’s image, Eric Bana and Rachel McAdams have signed to star in the film adaptation of Audrey Niffenegger’s novel The Time-Traveler’s Wife, in which Bana will portray a “dashing librarian [aren’t they all?] at Chicago’s Newberry Library who has a gene that causes him to involuntarily time travel forward and backward,” reports Moviehole. The film will be directed by Robert Schwentke and currently is scheduled for a 2008 release.
From Gawker: Doubting the NY Times Best Seller “formula”: “Although The Devil’s Teeth sold just 36,000 copies in hardcover, according to Nielsen BookScan, which tracks about 70 percent of book sales, it was a New York Times nonfiction hardcover best seller,” Times book reporter Motoko Rich wrote last week in a weird article that had book editors around town scratching their heads. “Although”? “Just”? Many Times bestsellers have similar and, sometimes, lower Bookscan numbers. Is it possible that the Times, arbiter of the most influential bestseller list in the country, doesn’t really have a set or sensical definition of what constitutes a “best seller”? An article in yesterday’s Business section reveals: yes, that is possible. Likely, even!
From the AP: Best-selling crime writer Patricia Cornwell has filed a libel lawsuit against another author and is asking a federal judge to bar him from posting defamatory messages about her on the Internet.
From the Philadelphia Inquirer: The Perseus Books Group said Thursday that it would shut down two imprints and lay off 24 employees following its March 1 acquisition of the Avalon Publishing Group. Perseus runs some of the leading independent presses, including Basic Books, PublicAffairs, and Da Capo Press.
From Business Wire: Jim Dale, the U.S. narrator of the Harry Potter books will host a midnight release party for Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows in New York on July 20th. The party will take place at the Barnes & Noble Union Square and beginning at 10:30 pm Mr. Dale will discuss how he got the role of narrator, how he creates his characters’ voices and he will also read excerpts from the previous books.
From PR Web: Blooming Twig Books LLC is offering a professional publishing package (worth $4,000 dollars) to the Grand Prize winner of their Humane Publisher’s Writing Contest. Categories include Poetry | Self-Help | Fiction | Non-Fiction | Mind, Body, Spirit.
Winners of the 2007 Lulu Blooker Prize (given to books based on blogs) have been announced.
And a few irrelevant blips, Just Because:
Men who look straight into a woman’s eyes when trying to convince her of something have better luck than men who…uh…look at their shoes? A bird? Other orb-like parts of her body?
Scientists develop artificial blood. Seriously.
People who know how to play a musical instrument make faster typists.
The emoticon for “smile” in most western cultures is this : ). In Japan, however, the smile is depicted like this: ^_^
Write on, all!