Friday, April 4, 2014

Publishing Industry News

This week's publishing news and industry blogs covers 3/22-4/4.

Publishing News

The Vatican plans to digitize 82,000 rare manuscripts from their library and make them available online. (Sorry, that might have been my geek-girl squee of delight you just heard.)

(US public domain image)
While in the US, the DOJ has slammed down agency pricing, in Canada Kobo has asked for and been granted a temporary stay that would allow publishers to continue using agency pricing based on the fact that Kobo can't afford to bear the costs of trying to compete with Amazon's ability to absorb the cost of steep discounts.

The Authors Guild legal counsel testifies before the House subcommittee on Courts, Intellectual Property, and the Internet that perhaps the solution to digitalization of orphan works is a collective licensing agreement; and also that orphan books are rare and it's actually usually easy to find authors.

Judge Cote approves class status and also denies two of Apple's expert witnesses for the upcoming consumers vs Apple damages trial. The damages from the DOJ vs publishers have now been released to consumers. Meanwhile, retailers begin to another class-action suit, under claims that Apple's agency pricing hurt them.

Barnes and Noble discloses that, as part of its agreement with Microsoft, it now has the option to not develop the Nook but rather to allow Microsoft to support the device through Microsoft-branded readers, apps, etc.

The New York Public Library has released a book recommendation engine to help readers find new books they'd probably like.

In the UK, book donations to prisons have been banned except by public libraries. Authors fight the ban.

Dropbox has acquired social reading site Readmill and has shut down the site, incorporating the Readmill staff into the Dropbox team.

In an April Fools hijink, Reddit decided to "ban discussions" on certain books--of course, this was complete baloney, because it was an April Fools joke.

The publisher Verso begins to sell books directly to consumers.

(Not exactly publishing, but may have an affect due to the number and breadth of companies involved:Major Silicon Valley companies have been caught in a no-employee-poaching agreement that's been keeping wages down for tech workers. Now they're facing a class-action suit.

Industry Blogs

QueryTracker's Publishing Pulse for 3/28.

Rosie Genova from QueryTracker offers the down-low on what some agents are currently looking for.

Are you a poet? Has someone offered to be your agent? Victoria Strauss on why you should run away screaming (and clutching your wallet). Also on Writer Beware, Entranced Publishing popped up, had trouble paying its authors, sold itself, and decided it didn't want to do publishing anymore and so closed down and gave the rights back to authors. And if you hear about WordWorks Publishing Consultants, and any of their pretty wide-ranging lists of endorsements... er, those "endorsements" were outright plagiarized from other, more reputable agencies, organizations, and not-WordWorks groups.

Author Nathan Bransford offers analysis of his recent sales. Amazon dominated the e-book market, but the print has been outselling the e-book.

Kristine Kathryn Rusch posts more in her Discoverability series: Part 14 (When you should promote/how to decide which work to promote); Part Surprise (be surprising and don't be surprised when you attempts to copy someone else's unique tactic don't produce the same results); and Part END (Measuring the results of your promotions).

Agent Janet Reid answers questions and gives advice. I have a piece pending publication; how do I mention it in my query? (I'm publishing x in x magazine, which will come out in date, plus what not to say). I live in another country; should I mention this in the query? (Nope. It'll come out eventually, but at the digital query stage, the agent doesn't need to know where you are.) Do I really need to aim for no more than 250 words in a query? (Yes, that rule still applies.)

And more advice and answers from Reid: Don't query several books at once for the same agent. Do you need to call non-YA/MG/Children's/NA Sci-fi "adult sci-fi"? (No, unless specified otherwise, the default is adult.) Do non-AAR agents always mean trouble? (Some good agents are not members of the organization, but be sure to do your research.) I had last-minute inspiration and rewrote after sending the query. Should I withdraw it? (No. If you get a request, then inform the agent.) If I have two manuscripts in different genres, can I go with two agents at the same time? (No; the agent who reps one will want to see the other.) If you're an older writer, should you just not bother with agents? (If you want an agent, then query agents. Just don't mention your age in queries; what matters is if you can write, not how old you are.)

A reader and a writer, Pippa Jay talks about 5 things she looks for in a science fiction romance on the Futuristic, Fantasy, and Paranormal blog. And author Sharon Kay talks about using minor characters to bring life to your story.

GalleyCat shares InkHouse's infographic "How Americans View and Share News."

No comments:

Post a Comment