This week! Publishing!
Some very sad news this week as Sid Fleischman, Newbery winning author of THE WHIPPING BOY and BY THE GREAT HORN SPOON passed away at 90. These were some of my very favorite novels as a kid and he will definitely be missed.
Editor Cheryl Klein posted one of the coolest things I’ve seen in the publishing corner of the Internet: a 110 year old rejection letter. The reason for the rejection? “Your story is developed well on the political side, which is important and novel, but without a strong love-interest it would not go.” Maybe things haven’t changed so much after all.
Lots and lots of iPad related news still churning its way through the Internet, including confirmation that there will be B&N and Amazon apps on the iPad. Meanwhile, there was quite a bit of shock when, after all the fights over e-book pricing and Amazon’s discounting, a website got a look at Apple’s iBooks store and revealed that many of the e-books were priced at…….. $9.99. Jacket Copy’s Carolyn Kellogg reminds readers that this is a current snapshot and things are still under negotiation in advance of the April 3rd iPad release day. (UPDATE: And the prices have indeed now changed and most now appear to be $12.99)
Meanwhile, Random House remains a noticeable holdout from the publishers who have gone along with the Apple agency model and have not come to an agreement to have their books in the iBooks store. Mike Shatzkin notes that there’s a very simple reason for this: Random House’s books will still be available on the iPad via the Kindle app and others, by retaining old wholesale model they receive more per copy than via the agency model, and meanwhile the price to the consumer for their books will likely be less than their competitors. More money received for lower priced books? Not hard to understand at all.
And meanwhile, there’s a new competitor to the Kindle: Kobo is gunning for the Kindle with a new Kindle-like dedicated e-reader selling for $150. Are the e-reader pricing wars about to commence? (via MobyLives)
Hachette UK CEO Tim Hely Hutchison sent an e-mail to agents and authors about the State of the Industry, which unfortunately I can’t link to because I don’t believe it’s been posted online in full. He notes the continued deterioration of the brick and mortar retail landscape and hopes the remaining stores will embrace the Internet: “In short, we think a proportion (only) of the existing traditional booksellers can and will survive and even thrive if and as they adapt and refine the very different shopping experience they can offer the consumer in store and via their own focused websites.” He predicts that e-book sales, which are currently 0.9% of the British market, will rise to 1% this year, 3% in 2011, and 5% in 2012.
In writing advice news, Donna Gephart posted information from Kate Messner about how to survive a Skype author-visit, and my client Natalie Whipple has a great insight about &*#$%& profanity: constant cursing isn’t a problem because it’s offensive, it’s a problem because it’s repetitive.
Comment of the week goes to…….. Zoe Winters!! Anyone who is interested in self-publishing and is curious about some more resources should check out her extremely helpful comment.
And finally, this week’s sign of the apocalypse is brought to you by St. Martin’s, who will soon be publishing a lifestyle guide by “Jersey Shore” luminaries Ronnie and J-WOWW. My oh my. Can Snooki’s autobiography and The Situation’s guide to situational abs be far behind? (via @sarahlapolla)
Have a great weekend!