Very big week for links, so let’s get started!
First of all, I hope everyone remembers that This Week in Publishing is but a pale imitation of author Cynthia Leitich Smith’s comprehensive weekly Cynsational News and Giveaways, which rounds up all of the best news and promos all in one place. It’s a weekly must-read.
Andrew Sullivan recently summarized two different anguished posts about the effect piracy is going to have one the future books. In order to enjoy my weekend I will stop thinking about piracy now. Okay now. Now.
Over at Bookpage comes word about Stephen King’s new book UNDER THE DOME, a 1,136 page epic novel about a town that is suddenly surrounded by an invisible force field and things start to go crazy. Anyone who has spent a day in 100+ degree weather in New York City probably knows what this feels like.
The Guardian recently featured the opposite of the “end of publishing as we know it” article: the less common but still enjoyable “things have always been this crappy” take on the book business. And actually, they have the audacity to suggest that some things might be less crappy now than before.
Janet Reid ponders what I’ve been pondering, which is that we agent bloggers may have terrified the wrong group of writers. It’s the age-old blogging agent conundrum: we want to reach the truly clueless, but the truly clueless don’t read agent blogs. If an agent screams in a forest about rhetorical questions, does he make a sound?
Kristin Nelson has some really terrific advice if you’re going to name-drop someone in a query: remind us who that person is. Our brains are full.
In agent pushback news, Jennifer Jackson took up one of my personal sticking points, and reminds authors to remember the difference between what is wanted and what is owed.
Via reader Tomas Mournian comes a really great post by author Joshua Mohr about his path to publication with big agents and a small press. He gets at some of the essential truths about the business: luck is huge, and rather than knowing everything, agents and editors are just making the best guesses they can.
Neil Vogler pointed me to an article in the Bookseller that provides the very interesting news that in 2008 the number of self-published books exceeded the number of traditionally published books for the first time. Wow.
And finally, I’m sure that I’m the absolute last person to know about this in the universe since even the New York Times wrote about it a couple years ago, but reader John Ochwat took pity on me and pointed me to the review page of a gallon of Tuscan Whole Milk, which has the best and most hilarious review thread on the Internet. Enjoy. If you haven’t already.
Have a great (long) weekend!