Friday, December 30, 2011

Publishing News

With the holidays and its associated vacations, the publishing industry has slowed these past couple of weeks. One thing really worth looking into, however, is the rumor that Barnes & Nobles may consider not carrying books for which the author's website or blog only provides links to Amazon. Rachelle Gardner, who mentions the rumor, also provides links to other booksellers for authors wanting to update their websites.

Google is filing a motion to dismiss the Author's Guild as qualified plaintiffs for the book-scanning project. Not unexpected; that's been hovering for a while. The basis of their claim is that, because the AG doesn't own each individual author's infringed works, it can't say it had any copyrights violated by Google's book-scanning project, so it can't sue - only the individual authors can. Google is doing the same to the American Society of Media Photographers, who represent visual artists. Even if Google loses, it benefits by draining the pockets of the plaintiffs.

And HarperCollins sues OpenRoad for publishing the ebook of Julie of the Wolves, claiming their contract from 1971 includes e-rights due to phrasing. Jean George, the author, had decided to go with Open Road Integrated Media for publishing the ebook.

In non-local but noteworthy news, Japan's fighting back against Amazon. After seeing Amazon undercut local American competition in e-books, Japan's not eager to invite them in. Japanese publishers are refusing the terms offered for e-book sales.

Everything else is either industry advice or an opinion.

General Industry Advice

Gardner also offers the suggestion that writers should look at obstacles as proof of their determination. How much do you want to be published? Enough to overcome the 'brick wall' of rejection? Then you'll succeed. Because if you let rejection stop you, you didn't want to be published badly enough to keep trying. It's a test of your mettle, and up to you to prove you can pass.

Janet Reid points out two things that make editors raise an eyebrow - in a bad way. Don't write "Please respond" in your subject; don't ask the agent to respond to a different e-mail than the one from which the query was sent.

Carolyn Kaufman on QueryTracker answers questions about dissociative amnesia - what it is, how it develops, and how it might be treated, and how it differs from a dissociative fugue.

Rachelle Gardner offers a suggestion on what agents mean by "the intersection of literary and commercial." She suggests that they're probably looking for is non-genre fiction, well-written and appealing to a broad audience. Non-genre means something that would be titled "general fiction" instead of put in a genre.

Roni Loren offers her 10 commandments for being a successful writer.


Courtney Milan offers her viewpoint on self-publishing versus traditional publishing, and her frustration with self-publishers who bash traditional publishers. She's self-published, by the by. And in the interest of full disclosure, I'm adding her link because I don't want to lose it. I agree with a great many of her points, especially about the possible incipient Amazon monopoly, and will be using the link in support of a post on my wishes for and my predictions of what will happen in the new year.

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