Tag Archives: book publishing

Books Are My Bag Campaign Announced, Targeting Bookshops, Readers and Cockhats

If the internet has proven anything, it’s that if someone famous does something, normos (everyone who is non-famous) will also do it in a misjudged attempt to be famous. That, and the fact there’s no such thing as private messages. Both these lessons came to the fore last week in the aftermath of the London Book Fair, where the Bookseller Association announced the advent of the Books Are My Bag campaign (a high street campaign to make reading seem even cooler than it already is with branded merchandise), and Tom Tivnan from The Bookseller sent an incredibly acerbic email to a photographer that was subsequently forwarded to the inbox of pretty much everyone in the trade.
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Blackfriars First Digital Literary Imprint in the UK

Blackfriars Books from Little, Brown UKI do love a good first. The first t-shirt day of the summer; the first beer on a night out; the first time you wear a new hoodie. Last week saw the announcement of the first digital-only literary list in the UK, Blackfriars from Little, Brown. The list promises to curate 9 to 12 titles a year from new or established authors, and is launching in June. Now there’s a first to get out of bed for. Continue Reading →

Archway ‘self publishing service’ welcomed by no authors anywhere. Ever.

Last week, Simon and Schuster US announced the new publishing ‘service’, Archway, which, for a fee of between $1,599 and $24,999, offers help to authors wanting to self-publish. The prices are tiered to include more advanced ‘services’ at different levels, all of which you can find on the Archway website. The most premium includes a social media publicist, 40 more PB copies of the book than the tier below, 5 more HB copies of the book than the tier below, and costs $5k more than the tier below.

The reactions to this news do say it all, so I’m going to put a few here: Continue Reading →

Publishers, We Need to Talk

There are very few things in life that make my blood boil more than someone tearing down the industry I work in with false accusations of collusion, underhandedness, and evil doing. So when I see a headline like ‘Why Book Publishers Hate Authors‘ in the Huffington Post, it’s all I can do to stop myself from going into a blind rage and throwing my computer into the ocean, finding the nearest rocket, and blasting myself into the face of the sun. Because what the hell, guys.

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5 Questions for Peter McKay and Rachel Maund [INTERVIEW]

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Publishing Training Centre and Marketability are working together to promote training.

Preliminary step towards takeover? Absolutely not, says the PTC’s Peter McKay and Marketability’s Rachel Maund, who are cheerfully adamant that recent announcement is a pragmatic response to falling training budgets and recognition that it makes more sense to collaborate than it does to compete. Lottie Chase, Marketing Executive interviews the two about the new partnership.

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Penguin sues authors for advances. Books are a business.

Cash it in‘I don’t get up in the morning and say: Am I inspired? …No, I’m not. I won’t work. ‘cos, God, how often would I ever work, you know?’

These words were spoken last week by one of the world’s most prolific authors, J.K. Rowling, and summed up quite nicely something I think many people want to forget about literature: books are a business; writing is work. Our explosive amnesia surrounding the b-word was highlighted again after reading the incredible reaction to news that Penguin US decided to sue a few authors after the books they were paid to write were not written. Continue Reading →

The first ELT Agent [INTERVIEW]

Nick RobinsonFor anyone who has been reading my previous BookMachine posts you will notice that I’ve been writing a lot about people in the ELT industry. The last post looked at a group of ELT publishing specialists who have set up ‘ELT Teacher 2 Writer’  where teachers register to a database designed to help publishers find new authors and content. They also provide training and development opportunities for authors to help write their materials.
 
This time I interviewed Nick Robinson about being the first ELT Agent and how he set up his company ‘Nick Robinson ELT Author Representation’. Continue Reading →

Design considerations when Publishing to a Global Market [VIEWPOINT]

A couple of months I wrote an article for the Futurebook blog in recognition of the site’s world-wide reach, and I thought it was time to share some of these thoughts with the BookMachine crowd and also re-visit some of the scenarios, which have now been published.

Working at a design agency that primarily works with educational publishers has given me an understanding of many requirements and considerations that need to be met for producing material (both print & digital) for many different markets. However, publishing for a global market is different to market specific publishing. The premise is that technology has made content (books, ebooks, websites, resources etc) accessible to a wider range of audiences across the world. This poses new challenges for publishers who need to meet the demands and requirements of a global market. Continue Reading →

Would you sell advertising space in your book, app, or e-book?

Publishers generally don’t sell advertising space. There’s an underlying fear that this will have a negative impact on readers. What is this fear based on and are there examples of how this model can work?

One of the criticisms of advertising is that it offends the consumer’s sense of good taste by insulting and degrading his intelligence. But surely that’s a criticism in itself? I’d like to think that as a consumer you are deemed intelligent enough to decide what is the right product for your needs.

Let’s start with some sums and a hypothetical situation for book publishers and an app build… Continue Reading →

Bring Your Own Technology

We keep hearing that America is a few years ahead of us in terms of technology. If this is the case then UK Publishers, Schools and Educators take note.

A recent report from the The Consortium for School Networking in America has highlighted that schools should be allowing their students to bring their own technology to the classroom, rather than just for use at break times. Whilst this is economically viable for schools it does pose a few problems, not only for the parents who will need to be buying this technology for their kids, but for educational Publishers. It essentially means that every title will need to work seamlessly across all devices. This is a big headache for educational publishers, who are creating digital components for their courses. Continue Reading →

Price Set by Dice Roll and Other Book Promo Tools

Last week there was a bit of a furore in the publishing world after a Guardian journalist Ewan Morrison slated social media promotion by self published authors, basically saying that as a promotional tool Twitter and Facebook etc were overrated and authors should focus on writing books, probably. I know that was a rabid paraphrase, but do go read the article if you want specifics because it’s interesting and incendiary, which are two of the best things an article can be. Continue Reading →

Writing for The Round [interview]

I support the roundThe changing nature of publishing is forcing Publishing houses, writers, authors – content creators – to think differently, experiment and look at working with new people in new ways.

Award winning ELT authors Lindsay Clandfield and Luke Meddings are doing just this. They have set up The Round, which aims to bring together creative people in English Language Teaching. It aims to bridge “the gap between blogs and books – and about the difficulty of placing innovative, niche or critical materials with the big ELT publishers.” And has so far released two books for public consumption. Their mission is to provide material for educators, give a fair deal to authors and share expertise and ideas.

Since starting The Round in spring 2011 they have released two new titles 52, which is an activity book for language teachers, and Webinars: A Cookbook for educators, a how-to guide for doing web seminars or lessons.

They release the new titles through a section on their website called Labs, whereby The Round team let you see new projects which are being developed and sample content can be downloaded. And feedback can be given to the authors via the comment boxes.

I asked Lindsay and Luke some more questions:

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BookMachine Weekly BookWrap: publishing stories from around the web

This week on the site, our Monday column argued that sometimes Your Innovation Ain’t All That. We then saw The elderly get techy with iPads, and Thomas Pynchon’s back catalogue digitised at last, while dreaming up puns as Publishing goes to the dogs in early Christmas slate announcements (barking up the wrong tree?).

Our big news was the announcement of BookMachine Oxford (hosted by Osprey Group). We hope to see all you Oxford folks there on 28th June.

Elsewhere on the web, there’s lots going on for you self-publishing types out there: are you Not writing? There’s an app for that: Write or Die. There’s More on the economics of the self-published book, some reading on Booktango and the Future of DIY E-book Publishing and there’s the suggestion that Amazon’s markup of digital delivery to indie authors is ~129,000%.

Are you an editor? This week The Guardian has been big on The importance of good editing, and what do you think, Should Editors Get Credited in Books?

Meanwhile, here’s Jane Friedman on marketing and building an author platform and the Anatomy of Book Discovery: A Case Study.

These posts look at How ‘Fifty Shades’ Is Changing the Face of Publishing and Why the ebook you want isn’t for sale in your country.

And, to wrap up this week, here’s a Summer Reading List 2012: 10 Essential Books for Cognitive Sunshine.

What we’ve learned from writers on CompletelyNovel – a ‘read-this first’ for self publishers

Anna LewisThis is a guest post from Anna Lewis, who co-founded the book technology company CompletelyNovel with Oli Brooks in 2008. Since then, they have created CompletelyNovel.com, a community powered book-publishing platform bringing modern publishing tools to an online network of readers, writers and publishers. You can follow Anna on Twitter via @anna_cn and @completelynovel.

 

There is endless advice that goes out to self-published authors about building their brand, identifying their audience and how to promote their work. This is all vital in the success of a book, but writers shouldn’t let it detract from other parts of the self-publishing process – namely, the technical and project management (let’s be honest, slightly more boring) side of things.

Working with self-publishers on CompletelyNovel has been massively inspiring. Every day we see new writers produce something that they have often been waiting many years to see in print. The advent of new tools on the internet has opened up so many doors. But, like anything, it throws up new challenges as well. So here are some dos and don’ts for aspiring self-publishers and their mentors to mull over, learned through watching the experiences of others. Continue Reading →

BookMachine Weekly BookWrap: publishing stories from around the web

On the digital front this week, there were Nine truths about e-book publishing, 5 Career Tips to Survive Publishing’s Digital Shift?, and there was good news for comic fans as Aquafadas Offers Self-Publishers Digital Publishing Tools for graphic novels.

But with the cascade of new epublishing tools, it’s best to remember the  Tortured Language – Discerning Ebook Rights in Ancient Publishing Contracts.

Meanwhile, could editors become brands in themselves, acting as a recommendation engine for readers?

There was also talk of Books, Reading, and Pinterest, The Value of Making Reading Hard, and the role of  The Publisher as Curator.

This week’s big bout was Amazon vs. Big Publishing: 800 lbs vs. 798 lbs.?

And if all that wasn’t enough reading for you, here’s some more of the Best Links for Writers and Publishers, and Your Guide to Literary Tumblrs.

BookMachine Weekly BookWrap: publishing stories from around the web

This week, there was a look at How e-reading changes reading habits, but  it was heartening to hear that Humans are hardwired to read books. From a publishers point of view, let’s hope they are also hardwired to pay for them: here’s one man not Not Worried by Ebook Piracy.

The Hyperion CEO considers Book Publishing’s Broken Business Model, and are Publishing and social media a match made in heaven?

Meanwhile, with Apple poised to bring important changes to its iBook platform, Barnes & Noble Mulls Splitting Nook Business, Sells “Dead Tree” Publishing Company. Interesting moves are afoot.

Elsewhere, here’s what What James Franco’s “127 Hours” Has in Common with Publishing.

And finally, have you ever considered Borrowing from REM’s Songbook When Publishers, Authors and Agents Can’t Agree on a Book Title?