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Dianna Dilworth

Dianna Dilworth is Editor of Mediabistro's digital publishing blog AppNewser and a contributor to GalleyCat. As a freelance writer, she has been covering technology, design and digital marketing for the last decade for publications including: The Architectural Record, The Believer, Businessweek, California Home & Design, DMNews, Dwell and PRWeek. She is also the author of the upcoming book, Mellodrama: The Mellotron Book, from Bazillion Points, a book that will change the way you hear the flutes at the beginning of The Beatles' song "Strawberry Fields Forever."

Study Claims That Reading Harry Potter Makes Kids More Gay Friendly

hpReading Harry Potter books can make kids more gay friendly argues a new paper by Italian researchers, published online recently in the Journal of Applied Social Psychology.

New York has the scoop: “In one study, researchers gave high school kids in Northern Italy two questionnaires: one asked about the books they’d read (both Potter and non-Potter) and the other was meant to gauge their attitudes toward gay people. As it turns out, the kids who were bigger Potterphiles — and who identified with the eponymous character — were also more likely to have positive feelings toward gay individuals.”

New York points out that outside factors could also be at play. For instance, Harry Potter readers could come from more liberal families since some religious groups have criticized the series.

News Corp. Completes Harlequin Acquisition

harpercollins-304News Corp has completed its acquisition of Harlequin Enterprises from Torstar Corporation.

The romance imprint is now a part of HarperCollins Publishers, but will keep its headquarters in Toronto.

“We are pleased to formally welcome Harlequin and its employees to the new News,” stated Robert Thomson, Chief Executive of News Corp. “The addition of such an iconic brand with a loyal audience, robust global expertise and digital depth is a proud and purposeful moment for our company. Onward to the next chapter.”

 

David Sedaris Has Trash Truck Named After Him

pigpensedarisIn honor of his help picking up litter in the UK, the Horsham District Council has named one of their garbage trucks after author David Sedaris.

The truck was unveiled at a ceremony on July 23rd. The vehicle has a drawing of a pig on the side of it and reads “Pig Pen Sedaris: Thanks David for helping to keep the area clean.

The West Sussex County Times has more: “District councillor for Chantry Ward, Diana van der Klugt, said: ‘David Sedaris is a familiar and very welcome sight in the lanes and by-ways of this lovely part of Horsham District, as he tirelessly and painstakingly goes about gathering up the litter so thoughtlessly discarded.’” (Via The Guardian).

 

PEN Center USA on Kickstarter

PEN Center USA hopes to raise $10,000 on Kickstarter to help increase funding for its literary fellowship Emerging Voices.

The organization will use the money to help increase its general operating budget and pay for the cost of books, event space rentals, transportation and printing costs.

The fellowship has been around since 1995 and has supported 119 authors. Here is more about the organization from the Kickstarter page:

PEN Center USA initiated Emerging Voices as a literary mentorship program designed to launch potential professional writers from minority, immigrant, and other underrepresented communities. The program has now evolved into an eight-month writing fellowship for writers who lack access to a traditional writing education for those who seek financial and creative support.

Hachette Revenues Up 5.6% in First Half of 2014

hachetteHachette Book Group’s net revenues were up 5.6 percent in the first half of 2014, as  compared to the first six months of 2013.

The company attributed the growth to the integration of Hyperion, along with strong titles including The Silkworm by Robert Galbraith aka JK Rowling, The Goldfinch by Donna Tarrt and James Patterson’s Unlucky 13.

“It is gratifying to have first half sales that exceed last year’s, especially in light of recent market challenges,” stated Michael Pietsch CEO of HBG.

The publisher counted 108 titles on The New York Times’ bestseller list during the six month period, as well as 43 titles on The New York Times’ eBook bestseller list.

 

The History of Typography: VIDEO

Are you looking for a typeface for your book? Perhaps you’d like it to tie into the era that your novel is set in?

DesignMantic has created a video which illustrates the history of typography, tracing the history of type development through the ages. It is a great resource for those that want to learn the background on the various typefaces that have been popular throughout the ages.

We’ve embedded the video above for your enjoyment.

Elle Fanning to Star in ‘All the Bright Places’ Adaptation

9780385755887Actress Elle Fanning will star in the film adaptation of Jennifer Niven’s debut YA novel All the Bright Places.

Producers Paula Mazur and Mitchell Kaplan acquired the screen rights to the Alfred A. Knopf novel, which is due out in January 2015.  The novel is the story of “a girl who learns to live from a boy who intends to die.”

“We are thrilled to have Elle Fanning star in this profound tale of two teens who find themselves in the heart-stopping throes of love, life and death,” stated Mazur. “Remarkably, Jennifer Niven had pictured Elle when she was writing Violet’s character. She is such a perfect fit, and we look forward to watching her bring Violet to life on-screen.”

National Book Foundation Partners With NYC For Summer Reading Program

bookup_logo_2010The National Book Foundation (NBF)’s after school reading program for middle schoolers BookUp has partnered with  New York City’s Department of Youth and Community Development (DYCD) to bring summer reading programs to kids in NYC.

The program serves 200 students at 10 locations throughout the city. The reading groups are led by published authors with the idea of connecting young readers with books outside of the classroom. Mitchell S. Jackson (The Residue Years) and Elisha Miranda (The Sista Hood) are among the writers involved in the program this year. Participating authors will be reading to kids as well as taking them on field trips to local bookstores and public libraries.

“At the end of the summer, each BookUp participant will have their own free personal library of 10 age-appropriate books,” stated Leslie Shipman, Assistant Director of the National Book Foundation. “Our students will cherish and benefit from that resource and their summer BookUp experience for years to come.”

George W. Bush is Writing a Book About His Father

bushFormer president George W. Bush is working on a book about his father George H. W. Bush.

The book has yet to be titled but is slated for a November 11, 2014 release in the U.S. and Canada by Crown Publishers. The hardcover edition’s first printing will include one million copies.

Here is more about the book from the press release: “…the book covers the entire scope of the elder President Bush’s life and career, including his service in the Pacific during World War II, his pioneering work in the Texas oil business, and his political rise as a Congressman, U.S. Representative to China and the United Nations, CIA Director, Vice President, and President.”

 

Amazon Defends eBook Pricing in Hachette Fight

amazon304Amazon has come out and defended its eBook pricing model arguing that a $14.99 or $19.99 is “unjustifiably high for an e-book.”

In a post on the Amazon Forums, the company argues that since eBooks don’t require printing, warehousing or  transportation costs, they should be less expensive than print books. Here is more from the post:

It’s also important to understand that e-books are highly price-elastic. This means that when the price goes up, customers buy much less. We’ve quantified the price elasticity of e-books from repeated measurements across many titles. For every copy an e-book would sell at $14.99, it would sell 1.74 copies if priced at $9.99. So, for example, if customers would buy 100,000 copies of a particular e-book at $14.99, then customers would buy 174,000 copies of that same e-book at $9.99. Total revenue at $14.99 would be $1,499,000. Total revenue at $9.99 is $1,738,000.

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