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Random House

Captain Random House Responds to Publishing Merger

As news of the Penguin Random House merger emerged last week, the satirical Captain Random House Twitter feed resurfaced with a stream of tweets.

This morning, the feed broadcast ten new rules for the publishing house and we’ve collected these humorous posts below…

If you need more Random Penguin House humor, check out the booming Random Penguin meme and the Penguin House tweets.

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Random House & Penguin To Merge

The major publishers Random House and Penguin have decided to join forces, creating a new entity called Penguin Random House. Random House worldwide CEO Markus Dohle will be CEO of the new group. Penguin CEO John Makinson will chair the board of directors.

Bertelsmann (the corporate parent of Random House) will control 53 percent and Pearson (the corporate parent of Penguin) will control 47 percent of the new publisher. The new entity will not include Bertelsmann’s German trade publishing business and Pearson decided to “retain rights to use the Penguin brand in education markets worldwide.” Bertelsmann CEO Thomas Rabe had this comment in the release:

“With this planned combination, Bertelsmann and Pearson create the best course for the future of our world-renowned trade-book publishers, Random House and Penguin, by enabling them to publish even more effectively across traditional and emerging formats and distribution channels. It will build on our publishing tradition, offering an extraordinary diversity of publishing opportunities for authors, agents, booksellers, and readers, together with unequalled support and resources … Its significance for our business and for the cultural resonance of our book publishing operations worldwide is on a par with such momentous agreements as the takeover of Goldmann Verlag in 1977; the acquisition of a stake in Bantam Books, our first-ever U.S. investment, that same year; the purchase of Doubleday in 1986; and especially that of Random House in 1998. Each of these steps was aimed at increasing the breadth and quality of Bertelsmann’s publishing operations, as our new company will.”

The new company will combine all of Random House and Penguin’s business in the United States, Canada, the U.K., but it will also publishing business in Australia, New Zealand, India, South Africa, China, Spain and Latin American.

Follow this link to read the Pearson release, explaining how the merger “will generate synergies from shared resources such as warehousing, distribution, printing and central functions.”

 

Penguin House Meme Spreads on Twitter

When news broke that Random House and Penguin could merge, readers, writers and publishing professionals filled Twitter with a burning question: Should this hypothetical publisher be called Random Penguin or Penguin House?

We collected the Random Penguin meme yesterday, exploring the #RandomPenguin hashtag that swept Twitter. Supporters of Penguin House have reminded us that we should not ignore the #PenguinHouse hashtag–including the Penguin House logo from Shelf Awareness (embedded above).

What name do you prefer? For your Friday afternoon reading pleasure, you can read our Storify collection of Random House images, tweets and posts below…

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Random House & Penguin News Spawns Random Penguin Meme

As the publishing world processes the news that Random House and Penguin could merge, Twitter has been filled with amusing posts from authors, readers and publishing professionals.

Novelist Kameron Hurley shared a series of Random Penguin images (including the image embedded above). We’ve collected some of our favorites in a Storify post below…

What was your favorite Random Penguin post? Share your thoughts at the #RandomPenguin hashtag on Twitter.

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Random House & Penguin Consider Combining Forces

Today Pearson confirmed that the publishing company is considering “a possible combination of Penguin and Random House.”

Pearson had this statement: “Pearson confirms that it is discussing with Bertelsmann a possible combination of Penguin and Random House. The two companies have not reached agreement and there is no certainty that the discussions will lead to a transaction. A further announcement will be made if and when appropriate.

Financial Times (a newspaper owned by Pearson) has a report from three anonymous sources today that Bertelsmann (the corporate parent of Random House) and Pearson (the corporate parent of Penguin) could unite their book publishing efforts.

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Lena Dunham Reportedly Lands $3.7 Million Book Deal

Actor, director and Girls creator Lena Dunham has sold the book proposal for her book Not That Kind of Girl: A Young Woman Tells You What She’s Learned to Random House. According to The New York Observer, she inked a $3.7 million deal.

The New York Times had the scoop: “Ms. Dunham, the writer and star of the HBO comedy Girls, circulated a 66-page proposal with color, illustrations and a humor that publishing executives predicted could produce another best seller like Tina Fey’s blockbuster memoir, Bossypants.”

Random House is reportedly comparing Dunham’s style to Helen Gurley Brown, David Sedaris, and Nora Ephron. Dunham has published “First Love” in  The New Yorker and a short essay in Rookie.

Random House Contacts OR Books About Fifty Shades Cover Art

Random House has asked OR Books to change the cover of Fifty Shades of Louisa May, a work that parodies the best seller 50 Shades of Greyframed as an erotic diary written by Louisa May Alcott.

Random House contacted OR Books after OR launched a “Bonnets for Bondage” promotion, offering readers a free copy of Fifty Shades of Louisa May in exchange for their copy of Fifty Shades of Grey.

Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group executive director of publicity Paul Bogaards explained the circumstances to GalleyCat via email. He wrote: “Counsel did contact OR books about the cover art for their book Fifty Shades of Louisa May, suggesting they revise same. They also requested that OR books refrain from using cover art from Fifty Shades of Grey in their promotional materials. The issue was not about the parody but the use of our cover art to help promote it.”

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James Dashner Inks 3-Book Deal at Random House Children’s Books

The Maze Runner author James Dashner has signed a 3-book deal with Random House Children’s Books’  Delacorte Press imprint. Executive Editor Krista Marino negotiated the deal with Dystel & Goderich Literary Management vice president Michael Bourret.

Starting in fall 2013, Delacorte will publish the titles of The Mortality Doctrine series for North American readers. Book one, The Eye of Minds, will come out in both print and eBook format simultaneously. Dashner (pictured, via) has also written original short stories to accompany this series; these shorts will be released in eBook format.

Here’s more from the release: “The series is set in an exciting — and frightening—world of hyper-advanced technology, cyber terrorists, and gaming…The VirtNet is total mind and body immersion, and it’s addictive. Recent reports claim that there’s a gamer going beyond what any gamer has ever done before. He’s holding players hostage inside the VirtNet, and the side–effects are horrific. His hostages have all been diagnosed as brain dead—and no one knows what his goal is. The government knows that to catch a hacker, you need a hacker. And they’ve been watching Michael.”

Vintage to Release Two Nora Ephron Titles as One Volume

Vintage, a Random House imprint, will be releasing two titles by the late Nora Ephron (pictured, via) as a single volume publication.

The books, Crazy Salad: Some Things about Women and Scribble, Scribble: Notes on Media, have been out-of-print for more than a decade. This single volume will be published in both trade paperback and digital format on October 16th. This project marks the first time either title will be available as an eBook.

Here’s more from the release: “The classic Crazy Salad, first published in 1975, is an extremely funny, deceptively light look at a generation of women (and men) who helped shape the way we live now. In this distinctive, engaging, and simply hilarious view of a period of great upheaval in America, Ephron turns her keen eye and wonderful sense of humor to the media, politics, beauty products, and women’s bodies.”

Fifty Shades of Grey Book Burnings Stoke Controversy

On November 5th, UK-based anti-domestic violence group Wearside Women in Need plans to burn copies of E.L. JamesFifty Shades of Grey trilogy.

According to Mail Online, director Clare Phillipson championed the bonfire after reading two-thirds of the novel. She explained: “we have libraries wasting and grossly misusing public money to buy a book which says: ‘domestic violence is sexy.’”

The New York Daily News reported that Ohio-based DJs Chad Zumock and Alan Cox also hosted a Fifty Shades burning back in July 2012. Cox argued that their event did not advocate censorship because all the participants joined in voluntarily.

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