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Publishing

McSweeney’s Publishes Portlandia Activity Book

portlandiabookMcSweeney’s has just published an activity book inspired by the popular television series Portlandia. The show’s creators Fred Armisen, Carrie Brownstein, and Jonathan Krisel authored the book. Sam Riley edited it.

“Like a cool high school classroom that prefers a sweat lodge to the traditional classroom, this book will expand your mind through participation, dehydrate you to a state of emotional rawness, then linger in the corners your bare soul,” explains the book’s description. Activities involved in the book include, “How to Crowdfund Your Baby,” “Punk Paint By Numbers,” and “Terrarium Foraging.”

The book retails for $28.00 but is currently on sale for $23.00 on the McSweeney’s site.

Wreck This Journal: The Travel Version Comes Out in June

wreckthisboxKeri Smith’s Wreck This Journal has a new travel edition coming out called Wreck This Journal Everywhere.

The guidebook has sold more than two million copies in print and has been released in numerous formats including app form. The book encourages “creativity through destruction” with a series of exercises designed to stir imagination by messing things up.

The new travel edition includes a section in which travelers can collect names, autographs, other people’s dreams, as well as an activity to fill an entire page with words spotted on an adventure. The journal also encourages readers to hang the book in a public place and invite others to draw on it. Another exercise suggests that the user takes a walk, then stands on a page. The book also instructs a user to collect a napkin from a restaurant, write a secret on it, and glue it to a page.

The travel guide comes out in June.

Artist Plays on Sensory Elements of Books in New Work

paperAs eBooks become more popular, one common complaint is that they just don’t have the same scent or feel of a print book. London-based artist Paul Schutze has a new project on display that plays up the sensory elements of books.

The exhibit is called “Silent Surface” and focuses on how humans interact with print book. The project has three parts:  Paper (a book), Babel (a series of prints of books and pages) and In Libro De Tenebris (the book perfume).

Here is more about the project from the artist’s website:

This book is part of an ongoing project exploring the material life of all books.Editioned here in full colour and casebound with dust jacket, the book measures 32.5cm by 27.5cm. There are 85 pages of photographs. The book is limited to an edition of 40 signed and numbered copiesPrice – £80 + P & P.

Capstone Young Readers to Launch New Young Adult Imprint

switchCapstone Young Readers will launch an imprint specializing in the young adult genre. Switch Press will offer readers both fiction and nonfiction titles.

The editors plan to acquire eight to twelve manuscripts on a yearly basis. Some of the books featured on the inaugural list include The Isobel Journal by Isobel Harrop, Half My Facebook Friends Are Ferrets by J.A. Buckle, and The Diamond Thief by Sharon Gosling. The publisher has scheduled these titles to be published in the Fall 2014 season.

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The Wikipedia Books Project Aims to Print Site

wikipediabookPediaPress is hoping to raise $50,000 on IndieGogo for a major undertaking that would turn the entire English Wikipedia into a 1,000 volume print collection which would be available for public exhibition.

Each book of The Wikipedia Books Project will contain about 1,200 pages. The volumes will have continuous page numbers, so the final books could reach into the millions in terms of page numbers.

The hardbound books would be shelved on a book case more than 32 feet long and 8 feet high.Here is more from the project’s Indiegogo listing: “The books will be first exhibited at Wikimania London in August 2014. Wikimania is the annual conference of the Wikipedia community. The conference and therefore the exhibition are open to the public. This years venue will be the Barbican Centre, a performing arts centre in the City of London and the largest of its type in Europe.”

 

 

Richard Bach Calls Kindle Singles: ‘Publishing on Skates’

bachRichard Bach, author of Jonathan Livingston Seagull and Illusions, published a Kindle Single called Illusions II:  The Adventures of a Reluctant Student last week.

In an interview with Thin Reads,Bach explained why he went with this format. “Kindle Singles is publishing on skates,” he said. “It prints like lightning; our book meets readers in hours.  I’ve spent so many years waiting for publishers to consider whether they wanted to print a book of mine, making contracts, taking months to fit it into the Fall list or the Spring list, fitting it into an advertising plan.   I’ll take the fast lane, please.”

The work is a sequel to his 1977 bestseller. The new book focuses on Bach’s near-death experience in a plane crash in 2012.

Game of Thrones Action Figures at Barnes & Noble

gameofthronesHBO Global Licensing and Funko have created a line of action figures based on the characters in HBO’s adaptation of Game of Thrones. These figures are available for sale exclusively through Barnes & Noble for a limited time.

The collection has six action figures – The Jon Snow Legacy Action Figure; The Daenerys Targaryen Legacy Action Figure; The Hound; The Tyrion Lannister Legacy Action Figure; The White Walker Legacy Action Figure; and The Ned Stark Legacy Action Figure. The toys are being timed to support the release of Game of Thrones: The Complete Third Season, on DVD and Blu-ray which hit shelves next week. They cost $19.95.

Here is more about the action figures from the press release: “Each action figure features more than 20 points of articulation and its own removable accessories. All action figures in this collection are recommended for ages 17 and over. The Game of Thrones Legacy Collection features the following highly articulated action figures.”

DreamWorks to Launch Children’s Books Imprint

DreamWorksDreamWorks Animation SKG Inc. will launch its own children’s books imprint called DreamWorks Press. Emma Whittard has been selected to run this new publishing venture.

The imprint’s list will focus on titles based on the movie studio’s popular properties including Shrek, Kung Fu Panda, and Madagascar. In the past, DreamWorks had licensed several of these properties to traditional book publishers. Prior to the launch, the organizers had to work on recovering the rights.

In an interview with The Wall Street Journal, CEO Jeffrey Katzenberg explained that “the last 18 months have been about expansion and diversification. Reading with a child is still a cherished experience. And giving kids e-books with interactive elements has shown itself to be a growth business in publishing.” What do you think?

Philosophers Launch a News Site

philosophersmailThe School of Life has created a new news site called The Philosophers’ Mail, which looks a lot like The Daily Mail but has a very unusual take on headlines.

Rather than just report big stories, the team of journalists are writing these stories from the point of view of  philosophers. For example, today’s headlines are: “How Much We Wanted Amanda Knox to Get Away With It,” “Kristen Stewart’s Socks Provide Lesson in Friendship,” and “One Bowl of Dutch Strawberries Could Save Your Relationship.” The site categorizes news into various themes including: Perspective, Tragedy, Disaster, Virtues, Capitalism, Shopping, Utopia and Relationships.

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Vidahlia Press is Hosting Prison Writing Contest

inkVidahlia Press and Publishing House is hosting their first prison writing contest called INK. The contest is open to anyone that has served time in the last year and is accepting submissions in five categories: Poetry, Fiction, Drama, Nonfiction and Graphic Novel.

More than 2,000 federal and state correctional facilities throughout the country plan to participate in the contest. The deadline for submissions is February 1st and the winners will be announced on July 4th.

The winning submissions will be part of an anthology, which will be published on Pubsoft’s digital publishing platform. The winners will also get tuition covered for a year for an online or correspondence fine arts or creative writing program. Pubsoft is assisting Vidahlia and their INK: Prison Writing Contest

 

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