Thursday, 30 September 2010

Rushkoff Goes Independent with OR Books

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Best-selling author Douglas Rushkoff moves to Independent POD publisher, OR Books, and explains why in this self-written article in Arthur Magazine. Contrary to some blog post I've seen on the Internet, Rushkoff is not 'self-publishing', but has simply chosen an alternative publishing model to the tradition path.

I broadly agree with where Rushkoff is coming from in his presented argument for going this route, but I have to say, I found some dubious conclusions and a few inaccuracies regarding where most books are sold. (see below quotes)

"Until it utterly reworks its method, gets rid of a majority of its corporate dead weight, releases its publishing houses from the conglomerates that own them, and embraces direct selling models, the publishing industry will remain rather useless to readers and writers alike."

Yes, traditional publishing is broken and badly needs to evolve its models, but it is far from the lost cause so many make it out to be.

"Will people still be able to find a book that’s not in stores, and will they want to? Well, most books sell more electronic versions than print ones anyway, and Amazon already sells more of most books than all real-world retailers combined."

I like to know where Rushkoff is getting the market and sales information to back this up.

Nobel Prize for Literature 2010?

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With October approaching, predicting the winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature is never an easy one. We'll know over the coming two to three weeks. But the Swedish Academy are a very quirky bunch, and that's why I believe the Nobel Prize for Literature is the highest accolade that can be bestowed on any author. Yes, from the American continent, Munro or Roth. On his full body of work, Pynchon is a worthy literary laureate, and a surprising omission over the past four years. Perhaps, as this New Yorker piece suggests, we have seen his best since Gravity's Rainbow - certainly a master at work.

My own picks for what it's worth (and by all means, share yours in the comments)

And personally, who would I like to see:

Peter Handke, The Afternoon of a Writer is a beautiful, small masterpiece.
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Wednesday, 29 September 2010

10 Things to Consider Before Self-Publishing | Cross-post via Liberal Arts Colleges

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This is a cross-posting from Liberal Arts Colleges' blog, written by Carol Vertz.

Self-publishing enables the writer to control every aspect of the creation and promotion of their book. It’s an appealing option for creative people who have the confidence and time to undertake such a large task. But most writers enter the process not knowing what to expect, relying on their well-honed research skills to learn the ins and outs of the publishing biz. Before you dig too deep, read through the list of 10 things to consider before self-publishing and determine if you’re up for the challenge.

1. The success rate is tiny
Very few self-publishers experience success because they simply don’t know what they’re doing. In many cases, they lack the foresight and perseverance required of a self-proprietor. Some of the common problems encountered by first-time self-publishers include the refusal to seek the help they need, the use of unprofessional covers and weak titles, overprinting and lazy marketing. It takes a lot of time and effort to write, print and market a book, so plan accordingly.

2. Do it for the right reasons
Because of the amount of risk involved, it’s wise to go into the process not expecting to make money. In other words, don’t expect self-publishing to become your primary source of income – if it generates any income. Also, don’t self-publish because you don’t feel that you need any help. If your book has been rejected by multiple publishers, then it could likely use a change or two.

3. It helps to have a niche
Most successful self-publishers are experts in a field with a narrow target audience. If you’ve already made a name for yourself in that niche – perhaps through lectures or previously published articles and papers and you have at least a modest audience, then you could market the book to those same people. Professors often utilize this strategy because they don’t immediately intend to mass market their books.

4. You’ll be running a business
That means a business license is required. You’ll need to know the cost of the operation – as you’ll see below – and you’ll need to devise a marketing strategy if you intend to reach an audience beyond the modest one that may already be established. As a publisher, you’ll need to create a name that include -books, press or publishing- so that people will know what it represents.

5. You’ll need money
Self-publishing is a big investment. In addition to the cost of printing, money must be set aside for marketing and hiring an editor, illustrator and/or graphic designer. A traditional publishing house is normally responsible for those costs, but since you’ll be doing it on your own, they’ll be your responsibility. Be sure to research and establish a budget beforehand so that you won’t encounter any unforeseen financial problems.

6. You’ll still need an editor
Because you won’t be dealing with a publishing house, you’ll need to find an editor to look over your work and offer his or her sage advice. Self-publishers hire freelance developmental editors to perform those tasks – they ensure you have an interesting and readable book. The final say on all matters is still yours, but their expertise will be needed if you have little or no previous publishing experience.

7. Know the details
Before your book hits the shelves, it’ll need an International Standard Book Number (ISBN) and a Library of Congress catalog number. The ISBN enables book retailers to identify the title amid their vast collections of books. You can obtain one from the RR Bowker Company. The Library of Congress catalog number enables you to get your book into libraries.

8. Sales will be your job
As previously mentioned, self-publishers must know how to run a business. In order for a business to be successful, it must have an efficient sales team – in this case, it’s you. You’ll need to convince brick-and-mortar bookstores, online bookstores, distributors and wholesalers that your book will be profitable. It’s important to know that different buyers require a different cut of the sales, so don’t demand for every buyer to take the same amount. And remember, patience is a virtue – your books won’t fly off the shelves all at once.

9. Respect will be hard-earned
If you’re fortunate enough to earn respect, it will be hard-earned. Reviewers tend to ignore self-published books because self-publishers tend to be amateurs who, honestly, produce unappealing work. It’ll be entirely your responsibility to get your work noticed by reviewers, retailers and readers. The process by which you compose your book will help determine how much success you’ll have.

10. It’ll never be too late to sell your book to a commercial publisher
If you successfully reach your intended market and have shown there’s potential to reach an even larger audience, then a commercial publisher will likely express interest in taking over the title. But this doesn’t always mean they’ll push it into the next stratosphere of sales. Make sure the people with whom you work will have as much interest in promoting the books as you have – otherwise, the transaction will be pointless.

About Liberal Arts Colleges

We put the liberal in Liberal Arts Colleges! Welcome to the best listing of online liberal arts colleges in the U.S. We do everything we can to make sure we have a current listing of the top liberal arts schools with the widest array of certificate programs, associate’s degrees, bachelor’s degrees, and master’s degrees.

The main writer on this site and the blog is Carol Vertz, she has some great experiences as an adjunct professor (at an online college) and in life experiences in general. Hopefully you will find her character and wit to be fun and maybe even a little biting.

In any event, we promise to work hard to not only bring you great colleges but also to try and make the selection process much easier for you. We will weed out the schools with low graduation rates and bad reputations to leave you with only the cream of the crop.

We will also promise to bring you interesting off-topic articles as well as time permits that will be written some by Carol and then some by guest posts that honor us with their articles every now and then (if you are a guest post author that has something good to contribute to our site, please contact us).
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Tuesday, 28 September 2010

Four More For Encore

Print Friendly and PDF, Inc. (NASDAQ: AMZN) today announced that AmazonEncore will introduce eight exceptional new books this spring. The list features compelling works of fiction including "Catcher, Caught" by Sarah Collins Honenberger; "Stalina" by Emily Rubin; "The Summer Son" by Craig Lancaster; "Regarding Ducks and Universes" by Neve Maslakovic; "Faking It" and "Ordinary World" by Elisa Lorello; and "Nickel Plated" by Aric Davis, as well as the physical edition debut of J.A. Konrath's "Shaken" (available first on Kindle in October 2010). The spring 2011 list also marks the imprint's first diet book, "Get Real and Stop Dieting!" by Brett Blumenthal. AmazonEncore books are available in print format at and as wireless digital downloads in less than 60 seconds from the Kindle Store ( to Kindle devices and Kindle apps. For more information on AmazonEncore and upcoming titles, visit

In addition, AmazonEncore is announcing four terrific additions to the fall 2010 publishing list: "Waiting for the Taliban" by Anna Badkhen; "Easily Amused" and "Celia and the Fairies" by Karen McQuestion; and "An Awesome Book of Thanks!" by Dallas Clayton.

"We've been happily overwhelmed with great books to share with readers this spring," said Jeff Belle, Vice President, Books. "With four great additions to our fall publishing list--including AmazonEncore's first picture book--and spring books ranging from our first diet book to a science-fiction twinged tale from a Yugoslavian immigrant, we hope every reader finds something to enjoy."

In "Waiting for the Taliban," which was originally written as a syndicated diary that was published in Foreign Policy magazine, war correspondent Anna Badkhen returns to Northern Afghanistan in search of the friends she made in the early days of the occupation there, back when it was the safest part of an unsafe land. Her journey takes her to an entirely different place than the one she first encountered: blighted, hopeless, still unspeakably beautiful but now overrun by the Taliban. Traveling from village to village, she comes to understand what went so terribly wrong in the north--and, by extension, what she believes is going so terribly wrong in Afghanistan in general. "Waiting for the Taliban" was published on Sept. 9.

From bestselling Kindle author Karen McQuestion, "Easily Amused" is a lighthearted romantic comedy about a young woman who finds love and friendship where she least expects it: her backyard. AmazonEncore will also be publishing McQuestion's "Celia and the Fairies," a middle-grade reader about a young girl who embarks on a quest to save the destruction of fairies' homes--and her own--from a vengeful developer. McQuestion had written fiction for years, but it wasn't until she self-published her novel on Kindle that she found her readers. Her success with self-publishing earned a movie option and publishing deals for five of her books. Her first novel, "A Scattered Life," has been ranked as high as #5 in the Kindle Store. McQuestion lives in Hartland, Wis., with her husband and three children. "Easily Amused" was published on Sept. 21, and "Celia and the Fairies" will be published on Nov. 2.

"An Awesome Book of Thanks!," written and illustrated by Dallas Clayton, is an uplifting book about being thankful for all the things in the world, good and bad, large and small, and welcoming life wholeheartedly. The book conveys, in pictures and simple yet beautiful language, all the ways one can be thankful, and all the different things in life to be thankful for. Clayton is the author and illustrator of "An Awesome Book!" He is also the creator of The Awesome World Foundation which donates books to children in need. Clayton lives in Los Angeles. AmazonEncore's first picture book, "An Awesome Book of Thanks!" will be published on Nov. 2.

In Sarah Collins Honenberger's "Catcher, Caught," 15-year old Daniel Landon sees a reflection of himself in the words of J.D. Salinger's "The Catcher in the Rye" after being diagnosed with leukemia. The author was inspired by her desire to reconnect today's teenagers with the voice of Holden Caulfield through a narrative based on the true-life story of an abused and neglected teenage boy suffering from leukemia. Honenberger was herself stricken with cancer after writing "Catcher, Caught"; thankfully, her cancer is now in remission. Honenberger lives in Virginia. "Catcher, Caught" will be published on Dec. 28.

"Get Real and Stop Dieting!" by fitness instructor and wellness expert Brett Blumenthal cuts through the chaos of fad diets and scientific mumbo jumbo to demystify healthy eating once and for all. Blumenthal has zeroed in on five simple "Get Real" principles, which are accompanied by 40 pages of healthy, satisfying recipes that range from whole-grain pancakes to rich chocolate clusters. Blumenthal's writing has been featured online on Yahoo!, Shine from Yahoo!, Divine Caroline, Intent, Wellsphere, Tonic and Gather. "Get Real and Stop Dieting!" will be published on Dec. 28.

Emily Rubin's "Stalina" is a daring twist on the timeless immigrant tale in which a witty and fearless Russian woman will stop at nothing to reconcile the pain of the past and find happiness in America. Rubin's fiction has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize. In 2005, she began producing "Dirty Laundry: Loads of Prose," a reading series that takes place in Laundromats around the United States. She lives in New York state. "Stalina" will be published on Jan. 4.

"The Summer Son," by novelist Craig Lancaster, explores the complexities of family dynamics and two men's turbulent journey toward healing. Mitch Quillen is nearly 40 and facing the quintessential midlife crisis: a career going nowhere, a marriage slowly dying and a tumultuous relationship with his father. When he is beset by mysterious phone calls from his father, he travels to Montana to face the man that he holds responsible for much of his discontent. Lancaster, a journalist and novelist, is the author of "600 Hours of Edward," named a Montana Honor Book. He lives in Billings, Mont., with his wife and two dachshunds. "The Summer Son" will be published on Jan. 25.

Neve Maslakovic's "Regarding Ducks and Universes" is a novel about a culinary writer who learns that he has an alter ego in an alternate universe and who sets out to snoop around his alter ego's life, with dangerous consequences. A native of Belgrade, Maslakovic earned her Ph.D. in electrical engineering from Stanford University and is a member of the Loft Literary Center. She currently lives in the Minneapolis-St. Paul area. "Regarding Ducks and Universes" is her first novel and will be published on Feb. 22.

"Faking It," Elisa Lorello's first novel, introduces 30-something writing professor Andi Cutrone, who meets a male escort at a party she attends after breaking off her engagement. Intrigued, she calls him, and over cheesecake in Brooklyn, he agrees to teach her how to be a better lover in exchange for writing lessons. Smart, witty and introspective, "Faking It" is a novel about two people discovering their authentic selves. A native of Long Island, Lorello currently lives in North Carolina, where she teaches writing and writes. "Faking It" will be published on March 15.

Readers who fall in love with Andi Cutrone in "Faking It" can also join Andi in Lorello's "Ordinary World." Six years after "Faking It" concludes, Andi is blissfully married and living a seemingly perfect existence until her husband dies unexpectedly. She flees to Italy to escape and runs into an old friend who helps Andi see that someday she will be happy again. "Ordinary World" will be published on March 15.

"Nickel Plated" from Aric Davis focuses on the life of Nickel, an orphan raised in abusive foster homes, who escapes to make a life as a private investigator. When he agrees to help the beautiful Arrow find her kidnapped sister, what he finds leads him into a paranormal trap and a fight for his survival. Davis lives with his wife and daughter in Grand Rapids, Mich., where he has worked for the past 14 years as a body piercer. "Nickel Plated" will be published on March 22.

Previously announced on the fall 2010 list, bestselling author J.A. Konrath's "Shaken"--the seventh book in the Jacqueline "Jack" Daniels series--will be available as a physical book on Feb. 22. The Kindle edition of "Shaken" will be published on Oct. 26.

Announced in May 2009, AmazonEncore is a program which identifies exceptional books and emerging authors using information on, such as customer reviews and sales data. Amazon then works with the authors to introduce or re-introduce their books to readers through marketing and distribution into multiple channels and formats, such as the Amazon Books Store, Amazon Kindle Store, and national and independent bookstores via third-party wholesalers. AmazonEncore is a brand for titles published by Amazon Content Services LLC.
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Harrington To Launch New Children’s Imprint | Irish Publishing News

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Harrington To Launch New Children’s Imprint

Jean Harrington, Managing Director at Maverick House and President of Publishing Ireland is to launch a new Children’s imprint, Páistí Press.

via, Irish Publishing News.

Monday, 27 September 2010

Not Your Father's Ingram | Publishers Weekly

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Skip Prichard, president and CEO of the Ingram Content Group, talks with Publishers Weekly this morning about the expanded moves from print to digital services.

Ingram has long been thought of as the book industry's quintessential middleman, distributing publishers' books and other products to thousands of accounts. But over the past five to 10 years, the company has invested tens of millions of dollars to become what Skip Prichard, president and CEO of the Ingram Content Group, called the "centerspoke" of an industry in transition. To meet its mission statement of "helping content reach its destination," Ingram's strategy is to offer publishers whatever services they need to operate more efficiently.
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Thursday, 23 September 2010

Ingram to Open POD Facility in Australia

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Ingram to Open POD Facility in Australia

Ingram Content Group announced plans to open a networked Lightning Source print-on-demand book production facility in Australia. The new Australian POD facility will manufacture both paperback and hardcover black and white interior books and should begin operation in June 2011.
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Wednesday, 22 September 2010

Amazon Announce 2011 AmazonCrossing Titles

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Amazon today announced further titles for 2011 from its AmazonCrossing translation imprint. From the press release:, Inc. (NASDAQ: AMZN) today announced that AmazonCrossing will publish six new books this spring, never before available in the English language: "The Hangman's Daughter" by Oliver Pötzsch; "No Reserve: The Limit of Absolute Power" by Martín Redrado; "Old Town" by Lin Zhe; "Pizzicato: The Abduction of the Magic Violin" by Rusalka Reh; "Pepita Jimenez" by Juan Valera; and "Field Work in Ukrainian Sex" by Oksana Zabuzhko. The AmazonCrossing editions of these forthcoming novels will be available in print format at and national and independent booksellers, and as wireless digital downloads in less than 60 seconds from the Kindle Store (

AmazonCrossing uses customer feedback and other data from Amazon sites around the world to identify exceptional books deserving of a wider, global audience. AmazonCrossing acquires the rights, commissions translations, and introduces these compelling voices to the English-speaking market through multiple channels and formats, such as the Amazon Books Store, Amazon Kindle Store, and national and independent booksellers via third-party wholesalers. AmazonCrossing announced its first title, Tierno Monénembo's award-winning novel, "The King of Kahel," in May 2010.

"In May, we announced AmazonCrossing and its inaugural title, 'The King of Kahel,'" said Jeff Belle, Vice President, Books. "Just a few months later, we're excited to announce six great translated works from across the globe. Whether they are reading an Argentine financial exposé or a thriller about witchcraft hailing from Germany, we think our customers will enjoy this diverse list of books."

"The Hangman's Daughter" by Oliver Pötzsch takes place in Germany in 1660. When a dying boy is pulled from the river with a mark crudely tattooed on his shoulder, hangman Jakob Kuisl is called upon to investigate whether witchcraft is at play in his small Bavarian town. Whispers and dark memories of witch trials and the women burned at the stake 70 years earlier still haunt the streets of Schongau. When more children disappear and an orphan boy is found dead--marked by the same tattoo--the mounting hysteria threatens to erupt into chaos. "The Hangman's Daughter" is the first novel from German television screenwriter Pötzsch, a descendent of the Kuisls, a famous Bavarian executioner clan. "The Hangman's Daughter," which was translated by Lee Chadeayne, will be published on Dec. 7.

"No Reserve: The Limit of Absolute Power," by the former president of Argentina's Central Bank Martín Redrado, exposes the reckless policies that nearly destroyed his country's economy. Readers will learn how this Harvard-educated veteran of Wall Street and prominent Latin American economist was appointed by then President Nestor Kirchner to lead Argentina through difficult economic times. "No Reserve," which was translated by Dan Newland, will be published on Jan. 11, 2011.

In "Old Town," Lin Zhe--one of China's most prolific writers today--paints an unforgettable picture of an ordinary family caught up in the maelstrom that was China's most recent century. Praised as China's "Gone With the Wind," "Old Town" ranges across the entire length of China, to California and back again, to the battlefields of the Second Sino-Japanese War and the brutality of the Cultural Revolution. Spanning the genres of romance, memoir, historical fiction and allegory, for the non-Chinese reader it will provide a rare and moving insight into Chinese lives in a century of fearsome upheaval. "Old Town," translated by George Fowler, will be published on Jan. 25, 2011.

"Pizzicato: The Abduction of the Magic Violin," by celebrated German author Rusalka Reh, is an exciting whodunit that follows an orphan after he befriends an eccentric violinmaker. AmazonCrossing's first Young Adult title, "Pizzicato" features orphan Darius Dorian, who discovers a magical violin during a school project. "Pizzicato," translated by David Henry Wilson, will be published on Feb. 8, 2011. This book is the first of three books by Reh that will be published by AmazonCrossing.

"Pepita Jimenez" by Juan Valera is the best known of the 19th century diplomat's eight novels, and this English translation is the first in many years since the original publication in 1874. When a priest-in-training leaves the seminary to return to the village of his birth, he becomes captivated by his father's lovely fiancée and is torn between his human desires and his sacred calling. This engaging introduction to a Spanish literary master, translated by Katherine Illescas, will be published on Feb. 22, 2011.

"Field Work in Ukrainian Sex" by Oksana Zabuzhko--named one of Ukraine's Top Ten Most Influential Women by Correspondent magazine--is the tale of one woman's personal revolt provoked by the top literary scandal of the decade. The author, a noted Ukrainian poet and novelist, explains: "When you turn 30, you inevitably start reconsidering what you have been taught in your formative years--that is, if you really seek for your own voice as a writer. In my case, my personal identity crisis had coincided with the one experienced by my country after the advent of independence. The result turned explosive: 'Field Work in Ukrainian Sex.'" The novel will be published in April 2011. This book is the first of three books by Zabuzhko that will be published by AmazonCrossing.

Galleys of these books are available for the media by e-mailing For more information on AmazonCrossing and upcoming titles, visit AmazonCrossing is a brand used by Amazon Content Services, LLC.
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Tuesday, 21 September 2010

Macmillan to Move Some Fulfillment to Ingram | PW

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Macmillan to Move Some Fulfillment to Ingram

Looking to lessen costs associated with its traditional print business, Macmillan has reached an agreement with the Ingram Content Group under which Macmillan will use Ingram’s print on demand and physical distribution infrastructure to manage its traditional inventory and POD needs for "long tail” titles. Macmillan will continue to service its customer relationships from its primary warehouse in Virginia.
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Monday, 20 September 2010

CBC News - Technology & Science - E-books: A new chapter begins

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CBC News - Technology & Science - E-books: A new chapter begins

Kobo CEO, Michael Serbinis, suggests in the above CBC News article that publishers should release books in digital format first to test the market before printing them. I'm inclined to agree, and I often give the same advice to authors starting out on the self-publishing road.

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Saturday, 18 September 2010

Hachette UK to set e-book prices from Monday |

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Hachette UK to set e-book prices from Monday |

"Hachette UK will begin setting e-book prices on retailers' websites from Monday after indicating this week that it will move to agency terms with every "reseller, including Amazon and Apple" from 20th September."
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Friday, 17 September 2010

Ebooks: the future is now - ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)

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Ebooks: the future is now - ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)

A fascinating ABC News feature on e-books and the future of books and some really sharp insights on the challenges facing the publishing industry over the coming year, particularly those of senior editor at TOR, Patrick Nielsen-Hayden.
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Wednesday, 15 September 2010

Wattpad and Shelf Unbound Writing Competition for Self-Published Authors

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Wattpad and Shelf Unbound Book review Magazine have teamed up for a self-published author writing competition.

Wattpad, the world’s most popular eBook community, and Shelf Unbound indie book review magazine announce the launch of the Wattpad + Shelf Unbound Writing Competition for self-published authors. The competition is open to any self-published writer who has an active Wattpad account (go to for further details). The winner, as selected by Shelf Unbound editors will have their work published and promoted on Wattpad and in an upcoming issue of Shelf Unbound. Entries may be submitted from October 1 through January 31, 2011.
“Shelf Unbound magazine features the best of small press, university press, and self-published books, so we are thrilled to be partnering with Wattpad and its large community of online readers to spotlight great self-published writers,” says Shelf Unbound publisher Margaret Brown.
Adds Wattpad’s CEO and co-founder Allen Lau, “Wattpad is one of the world’s leading mobile eReading devices and is a great platform for authors to reach mobile audiences. In partnering with Shelf Unbound, we are providing self-published authors a truly unique opportunity to increase awareness of their work.”
Shelf Unbound is a new digital-only monthly magazine featuring book reviews, excerpts, author interviews, photo essays, and more. The magazine can be purchased and downloaded to your computer, iPad, or iPhone. To preview the latest issue or subscribe, go to

Tuesday, 14 September 2010

Pearls of Wisdom | Maya Reynolds: Five Years Later

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This is an absolute gem of a piece today from author Maya Reynolds - pearls of wisdom for any aspiring author. Go read it!

Saturday, 11 September 2010

Mountains to Sea Festival 2010 | Readers, Writers and the Digital Revolution

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I have attended a few of the events this week in the Mountains to Sea Book Festival, but this forum discussion will be the highlight on Sunday - Readers, Writers and the Digital Revolution

The preview from the official Mountains to Sea Book Festival site: 

Recently, Jeff Bezos reported that Amazon now sells more e-books than new hardbacks. What does this portend for the future of reading? Are traditional bookshops, the paperback, the novel itself facing extinction? A stellar panel of experts debates the question - how will we be reading in the year 2020?

Tim Waterstone was the greatest bookseller of his generation. Founded in 1982, the Waterstone’s chain changed our reading and book-buying habits fundamentally. He sold Waterstone’s in 1993 and is now a novelist and business speaker.

Rachel Cooke is a writer and columnist at The Observer and The New Statesman. In 2006, she was named Interviewer of the Year at the British Press Awards. She is an impassioned champion of books and libraries.

Jamie Byng is among the most dynamic of UK publishers. In his mid-twenties he bought out Canongate Books, and turned it into an ultra-hip haven for writers as diverse as Yann Martel, Nick Cave and Barack Obama.

Matthew Kneale is the author of five novels the most famous of which, English Passengers, won the Whitbread Award in 2000. He was born in London, read history at Oxford and now lives in Rome.

The discussion will be moderated by Eoin Purcell Editor, Irish Publishing News.
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Thursday, 9 September 2010

An interview with self-publishing author Patricia Ryan | TeleRead: Bring the E-Books Home

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Teleread today has an interview with self-published author Patricia Ryan.

An interview with self-publishing author Patricia Ryan | TeleRead: Bring the E-Books Home
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Beyond Here There Be Dragons | Bait 'n' Beer

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Beyond Here There Be Dragons | Bait 'n' Beer:

I contemplated getting into a discussion in the past week about POD as a business model and the way it is used by self-publishing authors, POD publishers, and the wider publishing world (though many of them are uncomfortable admitting they use it for niche titles, ARC's because of the connotations that go with it), but Don Linn has a piece here which explodes the myth of models of business and shows what it really is all about - not the method, but the profit model.

"Last week on Twitter, my friend Guy LeCharles Gonzalez (@glecharles) suggested, maybe a little in jest, that the official T-Shirt for the 2011 Digital Book World Conference ( should read, 'WHAT'S YOUR�REVENUE�MODEL?'. I thought it was great, but I responded that I actually thought it should read 'WHAT'S YOUR�PROFIT�MODEL?' since, at least for most of us, businesses really aren't sustainable without earnings to support growth, further investment, and innovation."
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Wednesday, 8 September 2010

Mountains to Sea Literary Festival | Sept 7th - 12th | Dun Laoghaire, Dublin

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The Mountains to Sea Literary Festival takes place all this week (7th to 12th Sept) in Dun Laoghaire, Dublin. A full schedule of events can be found here, where you can also download an event brochure. The official site for the Mountains to Sea Literary Festival features further details and news.

For the 2010 Mountains to Sea dlr Book Festival, the organisers were deeply conscious of the need to raise our game by expanding the programme and the range of events on offer. We hope we’ve managed to achieve that but we’ll let you decide. Among the authors appearing will be no less than four former Booker Prize-winners (five, if you count the late JG Farrell who is honoured in a special appreciation event). Fans of crime fiction, sport and politics are also catered for while the children’s programme is vastly expanded with a Children’s Author Lunch among the highlights. Leviathan Political Cabaret and the DLR Literary Tour return and to deliver The Beckett Address we are pleased to welcome one of Ireland’s finest actors and directors, Alan Stanford. We are also delighted to be hosting a very special edition of RTE’s Sunday Miscellany Live. Also appearing will be Kate Atkinson, Joseph O’Connor, DBC Pierre, Jonathan Coe, Jennifer Johnston, former Taoiseach Garrett Fitzgerald, Waterstone’s founder Tim Waterstone and the great Australian novelist, Alex Miller.

The Mountains to Sea dlr Book Festival enjoyed a fantastic debut last year thanks to the support and enthusiasm of local book-lovers and, thankfully, not a few first-time visitors to Dun Laoghaire. One writer praised our first effort as a festival “of international standard, with a great local tilt” which was gratifying to hear. On a glorious weekend, the Festival welcomed over 5000 guests who revelled in near-Mediterranean sunshine while strolling from venue to venue. Note to the weather-gods – more of the same please! Sunshine or not, we urge you to come out and support your local book festival.
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Tuesday, 7 September 2010

OR Books | Program or be Programmed: Ten Commands for Digital Age, by Douglas Rushkoff

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OR Books | Program or be Programmed: Ten Commands for Digital Age, by Douglas Rushkoff

OR Books latest offering:

Program or be Programmed


Douglas Rushkoff
With illustrations by Leland Purvis

Man Booker Prize 2010 Shortlist Announced

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From the Man Booker press release:

Peter Carey, Emma Donoghue, Damon Galgut, Howard Jacobson, Andrea Levy and Tom McCarthy are today, Tuesday 7 September, announced as the six shortlisted authors for the 2010 Man Booker Prize for Fiction. For over four decades the prize - the leading literary award in the English speaking world - has brought recognition, reward and readership to the outstanding new novels of the year. The shortlist was announced by Chair of judges, Sir Andrew Motion, at a press conference held at Man's London headquarters.

The six books, selected from the Man Booker Prize longlist of 13, are:
Emma Donoghue Room (Picador - Pan Macmillan)
Damon Galgut In a Strange Room (Atlantic Books - Grove Atlantic)
Howard Jacobson The Finkler Question (Bloomsbury)
Andrea Levy The Long Song (Headline Review -
Headline Publishing Group)
Tom McCarthy C (Jonathan Cape - Random House)

Chair of judges Andrew Motion, comments:
"It's been a great privilege and an exciting challenge for us to reduce our longlist of thirteen to this shortlist of six outstandingly good novels. In doing so, we feel sure we've chosen books which demonstrate a rich variety of styles and themes - while in every case providing deep individual pleasures."
Australian author Peter Carey is one of only two authors to have won the prize twice, in 1988 for Oscar and Lucinda and in 2001 for True History of the Kelly Gang. Should he win this year, he would become the only author to have won three times. He was also shortlisted in 1985 for Illywhacker. South African author Damon Galgut has previously been shortlisted for his book The Good Doctor in 2003 and Howard Jacobson has been longlisted twice before for his novels Kalooki Nights in 2006 and Who's Sorry Now? in 2002. Irish authorEmma Donoghue is, at 40, the youngest author on the shortlist.
The winner of the 2010 Man Booker Prize for Fiction will be announced on Tuesday 12 October at a dinner at London's Guildhall. The announcement will be broadcast on BBC News across television, radio and online.
The winner will receive a cheque for £50,000 and worldwide recognition. Last year's winning novel, Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel, has now sold over half a million copies in the UK alone. Each of the six shortlisted authors, including the winner, receives £2,500 and a designer bound edition of their shortlisted book.

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Sunday, 5 September 2010

Finally, someone admits what the Print on Demand business model really is � Behler Blog

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"Personally, I’d rather know that my book would actually have distribution, marketing, and promotion rather than making sure I felt good about myself. Will the fact that I can call my publisher at home get me readers? Will it get my books on the shelves? I think not. Mr. Rozansky is trying to advocate a disconnect with smoke and mirrors. And this makes me cranky because I know of too many authors who fell for this gibberish."
Lynn Price, Behler Publications
Finally, someone admits what the Print on Demand business model really is � Behler Blog
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Saturday, 4 September 2010

BBC Radio Oxford | The Write Lines | Sunday 9pm

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A reminder that the excellent BBC Radio Oxford series, The Write Lines, a broadcast aimed at aspiring writers and presented by Sue Cook, returns to the airwaves this weekend. You can catch up with the broadcast of the first in a new series on Sunday evening at 9pm BST.

This weeks program features guests, Scott Pack, Commercial Director of publisher The Friday Project; Sarah Franklin, a publishing consultant; ghost writer Andrew Crofts; author Lauren St John; and tweeter and blogger Ben Johncock.

You can hear the broadcast by visiting here

Friday, 3 September 2010

Fastpencil Launch Premiere Imprint for Best-Selling Authors and Self-Publishers

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Fastpencil, an ebook distributor and publishing services provider, has launched a premium imprint aimed at established best-selling authors with sales of over 100,000 copies, and self-published authors with sales of over 10,000 copies. From the dedicated site for the new imprint the following:


FastPencil PREMIERE helps best-selling authors get their eBooks onto the iPad and Kindle fast and easy in addition to all the print book channels.

Top Authors
If you have sold over 100,000 copies of your books and would like to find a publisher that is faster, more flexible and profitable, give us a call. FastPencil PREMIERE is for you.

Emerging Talent
If you have self-published in the past and are experiencing great interest, a growing fan base and over 10,000 copies sold, give us a call. FastPencil PREMIERE is for you.

This looks like a pretty big move for Fastpencil since the company first began offering ebook distribution and publishing services.

Also from the Fastpencil Premiere site, the following about how authors can obtain the new service:


Publisher Connect
Have your Publisher contact us to work out a partnership. Publishers can work with FastPencil PREMIERE to coordinate eBook publishing and distribution deals. We can also work to handle backlist and out-of-print titles both as print-on-demand and eBooks.

Agent Connect
Have your Agent contact us to work out a partnership. We have flexible and simple contracts that make sense. We can work directly with your agent, or together with you to create a relationship that is easy and profitable for everyone.

Contact us for a direct relationship. Many top authors have written books that are outside their contract genre and want to try something different. FastPencil PREMIERE can help you review and collectively decide the best route to publish, whether eBook only or a full-court-press.

Here is the press release in full:

CAMPBELL, Calif., Sept. 2 /PRNewswire/ -- FastPencil today announced FastPencil Premiere (, a new and exclusive line of general interest titles that provides top-tier and best-selling authors a publishing home with all the benefits of FastPencil's integrated suite of digital and social media publishing services to produce and publish the best in book content. Several best-selling authors are leveraging FastPencil Premiere to use its high-quality services to publish print and eBook versions of their titles in a simple, fast and top-quality fashion, while also gaining much higher royalties with more frequent payout.

"FastPencil exemplifies a fresh way of thinking during a transformative time in the industry and I'm very excited to be working with them," said Guy Gilchrist, an award-winning cartoonist. "With their digital publishing tools they are able to provide me with unprecedented support, speed to market, higher royalty rates and more frequent payments - but best of all, the team at FastPencil is incredibly creative, responsive and professional."

Gilchrist - a skilled cartoonist and children's book author whose work includes the comic strip Nancy, Your Angels Speak, Night Lights & Pillow Fights, Screams, The Poetry Guy, The Muppets and The Rock Channel, has recently selected FastPencil to publish his cartoons in print and eBook formats and his latest book, The Best of Today's Dog, is now available at FastPencil, Amazon and iBookstore.

FastPencil Premiere offers companies and organizations planning to launch new book publishing ventures the best in proprietary and pioneering technology and also plans to break and introduce top-notch new talent to the public. FastPencil's digital and social media platforms provide incredible improvements and advantages over traditional publishing houses, including speed to market, transparency throughout the publishing process and a superior return on investment with a much larger share of royalties.

"More and more mid- and top-tier authors are using FastPencil and we have created a special place tailored to their needs," said Steve Wilson, FastPencil co-founder and CEO. "Best-selling authors no longer need to line up for the tedious traditional publishing "go to market" plan – and instead can take back control of their work and reap all the benefits along the way."

In utilizing a next-generation digital publisher such as FastPencil, authors have the opportunity to move swiftly through the book writing and publishing process. FastPencil provides professional design templates, robust import and tools and collaboration features enabling authors to invite editors and their book design team into the project no matter where they are geographically before moving into distribution. FastPencil's concierge team can provide custom design, editing and marketing services and the publishing wizard ensures that all of the important details in publishing are taken care of including table of contents, ISBN, dedications and copyright details.

At FastPencil authors can sell more books and maintain complete control of content creation, price, distribution decisions and sales activity. FastPencil's relationships with thousands of book and eBook retailers ensures that each of their authors' books are available to the broadest possible audience and the write-once, publish anywhere approach guarantees their books can be read anywhere today and in the future.

FastPencil Features:

•Free book writing tools

•Professional book design templates

•Import manuscripts, turn blogs to books or write collaborative stories

•Connect and share through Twitter, Facebook, Gmail, AOL, Yahoo and MSN

•Author concierge services including consulting, design services and formatting

•Collaborate with your book creation team, personal network of friends or industry professionals

•Integrated self-publishing wizard for step-by-step assistance

•Print on Demand or to eBook formats

•Wide distribution including iBookstore, Amazon and Barnes & Noble

About FastPencil

FastPencil is leveraging the disruptive trends of self-publishing, social media, print-on-demand and eBook distribution to deliver a new unified online service that streamlines the book publishing process offering more control and higher margins for authors. The FastPencil writing and publishing service enables authors to create books online, collaborate, publish and distribute from one engaging, simple, cost-effective solution. For more information please visit

For regular FastPencil updates follow us at

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FastPencil is a registered trademark of FastPencil, Inc. All other registered or unregistered trademarks are the sole property of their respective owners.

Media Contact:

Seana Norvell

FortyThree, Inc.


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