Lots of good links from the last few weeks, let’s get to it!
It’s been tough sledding for Barnes & Noble lately. On the heels of announcing earlier in the year that they plan to shutter one third of their stores (link is to CNET, I work there), they had an earnings call this week in which they revealed that their Nook business is struggling, with losses at $190.4 million. Publisher/editor Peter Osnos notes that B&N has not benefitted greatly from the Borders bankruptcy and wonders if the large chain bookstore is endangered (something I blogged about two years ago), though it should be noted that the stores themselves are still profitable.
The last of the publishers sued by the Department of Justice for conspiring to raise e-books has settled. In a letter to authors, Macmillan CEO John Sargent said “Our company is not large enough to risk a worst case judgment.”Apple has not yet settled.
Meanwhile, publishing consultant Mike Shatzkin has an interesting look at some possible directions for the future of e-bookselling, which could get more atomized and dispersed across the Internet rather than concentrated solely with the large online vendors.
In book news, happy book birthday to friend o’ the blog Shawn Odyssey, Geoffrey Rush and Emily Watson have been cast in the film adaptation of The Book Thief, and I gave my shortest interview ever to Ted Fox.
Some authors are buying their way onto bestseller lists.
Working with publishers can occasionally be quite frustrating, as one author and independent bookstore recently discovered. When the bookstore wanted to order 450 copies the publisher refused to give them more than 200 (Why? Because they don’t do things that way), so the bookstore ended up going to Target to get the books instead.
There really is no such thing as a typical writing path. Malcolm Gladwell has a great post on just how diverse paths to literary success really are.
A blogger plans to review every bestselling book of the year for the past hundred years.
Atari’s co-founder has launched a new venture that hopes to make the self-publishing process much easier by giving authors the ability to contract out different parts of the process in exchange for flat rates or royalties.
The Forums!! I have been receiving lots and lots of writing and publishing questions lately, and time constraints prevent me from answering them all. To save time and to hopefully benefit more people, I answer publicly in the Forums, where I am happy to answer any publishing question I can right here. You can also review previous questions.
And finally, a photographer put together a truly incredible and dare I say moving Tumblr of Calvin and Hobbes photoshopped into real landscapes (via Martha Mihalick), but after it went viral it was shut down because of copyright claims. Alas alas.
Have a great weekend!
Photo by me