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Soundtrack Tool Booktrack Now Has 1 Million Members

booktrackBooktrack, a tool designed for self-published writers and publishers to add soundtracks to their eBooks, now has more than a million users.

The company, which launched 11 months ago, expects to reach 2 million by the end of its first year. Over the last year, more than 4,000 authors have joined the platform and Booktrack users have published more than 6,000 titles in 30 different languages. This includes more than just authors. Here is more from the press release:

Booktrack’s reach also extends to the classroom, where it has been proven to dramatically improve student literacy. More than 4,000 educators around the world have adopted the Booktrack Classroom application to help students more deeply engage with creative writing, essays, novels, and poetry studies.

Mediabistro Course

Memoir Writing

Memoir WritingStarting January 7, work with a published memoir writer to tell and sell the story of your life! In this course, Wendy Dale will teach you how to create your story around a marketable premise, hone your narrative voice, write a memoir with a solid structure, and sell your memoir before you've even finished writing it. Register now!

Gone Girl Has Sold More Than a Million Copies

gone girlGone Girl by Gillian Flynn has sold 1, 049, 943 paperbacks, according to Nielsen Bookscan.

The book has earned the Nielsen Book Platinum Award, an honor given to books that have sold a million copies.

The title joins the ranks of The Da Vinci CodeTwilight, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood PrinceOne Day and The Lovely Bones.



Paco Porrúa, Credited With Popularizing Gabriel García Márquez, Has Died

UnknownThe Spanish editor and translator Francisco “Paco” Porrúa has died. He was 92 years old.

As the editor at Editorial Sudamericana, a publishing house in Buenos Aires, Porrúa discovered Gabriel García Márquez’s classic novel, 100 Years of Solitude.

The Buenos Aires Herald has more: “Apart from his undeniable gift as a translator and his keen eye for extraordinary, even if unknown or too daring, literary gems, Porrúa will forever be remembered as the man who, running contrary to the opinion of other editors and publishers who easily dismissed it as far too imaginative, devoured and became fascinated with García Márquez’s unpublished manuscript. Such was the fascination that Porrúa wrote him an advance payment cheque of US$500, which in 1967 was a small fortune for the impoverished writer and his wife, both living in Mexico at the time.”

The Hobbit Film Earned $90.6M in First 5 Days in Theaters

thehobbitPeter Jackson’s latest chapter in his adaptation of J. R. R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit brought in $90.6 million in its first five days in theaters.

Variety has the scoop: “The franchise finale debuted Wednesday at 3,875 locations and easily trumped tracking that predicted a debut of about $70 million. For its inaugural three-day weekend, the fantasy adventure earned $56.2 million.”

In celebration of The Hobbit: The Battle of The Five Armies movie, comedian Stephen Colbert recently dressed up as Bilbo Baggins, Legolas Greenleaf and Gandalf the Grey for the cover of Entertainment Weekly.

Celebrity Memoirs Are Losing Steam

e3c5ab0ba6905343649b90e53f53ad08_400x400Celebrity memoirs are past their prime, according to Charlie Redmayne, the CEO of HarperCollins UK. After a slump in sales in books written by famous people, the publisher admits that they are acquiring less of these titles.

The Daily Mail has more:  ”He claims their profits are now ‘hit and miss’ – and says even those expected to do well, written by some of the country’s biggest names, are failing to match expectations. ‘A lot of books were bought last year for large amounts of money which just didn’t do the numbers at all.”

The  Guardian explored the stats and pointed out that according to Nielsen BookScan, sales of autobiographies and memoirs are down about 4 percent this year over last year.


Jane Austen-Inspired Recommendations: INFOGRAPHIC

janeaustenThe Austin Public Library has created an infographic called “Jane Austen with a Twist.”

This flowchart, which honors Austen’s 239th birthday, features 23 recommendations for books inspired by the stories of Jane Austen.

We’ve embedded the entire graphic after the jump for you to explore further. (via Read more

Emma Straub Shares Advice For How to Fictionalize Real People

Emma StraubAuthor Emma Straub wrote an essay for Rookie on “How to Write About Real People.” Straub discusses her personal experiences with fictionalizing people she has known in her real life. Straub confesses to drawing inspiration from her brother and one of his past romantic relationships to create two characters in her latest novel, The Vacationers.

Straub (pictured, via) feels that all writers have the right to do this, but they should be aware that they can really hurt a person’s feelings by choosing to exercise this right. She also cautions that if a person recognizes themselves in a story that you write, you cannot compel them to feel at peace with your choice. Here’s an excerpt from Straub’s piece: Read more

Dan Ruffino to Join Simon & Schuster Australia

Simon & Schuster Image LogoDan Ruffino has been hired as the managing director of Simon & Schuster Australia. Ruffino will report to Ian Chapman, the chief executive of Simon & Schuster UK and International.

Ruffino has devoted more than 25 years to a career in publishing. Some of the authors he has worked with in the past include Jackie Collins, Ian Thorpe, Ken Follett, Marian Keyes, and Judy Blume.

Ruffino gave this statement in the press release: “I am thrilled to be given the opportunity to lead Simon & Schuster’s dynamic team in Australia and New Zealand. I am passionate about connecting writers with readers and look forward to working closely with my colleagues internationally and with local booksellers, authors and agents to continue to accelerate the growth of the business in Australia.”

BBC Films Unveils First Trailer For Bill

BBC Films has unveiled the first trailer for Bill. According to The Telegraph, the story for this film examines “the Bard’s ‘lost years,’ when the playwright rose from obscurity in Stratford-upon-Avon to fame as a writer in London.”

The video embedded above features actor Mathew Baynton in the titular role of a young William “Bill” Shakespeare. Digital Spy reports that this comedy adventure movie “will open in UK cinemas on March 27, 2015.”

How to Craft a Mockingjay-Themed Gold Plate

Do you need a last minute holiday gift idea? The Homemade Game Guru YouTube channel offers a “Dollar Store Hack” solution for Hunger Games fans: a “Mockingjay Katniss Gold Collector Plate” craft. If you want to make this project, watch the video tutorial embedded above. What do you think?