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Archives: July 2010

Tree House Books to Close

treehouse.jpgAfter nearly eight years, independent bookseller Michele Lonergan is closing her Michigan bookstore, Tree House Books.

In August, the bookstore will host a liquidation sale, selling books at a 30 percent discount. Last year eastern Michigan lost a great independent bookstore when Shaman Drum closed in Ann Arbor. According to mlive.com, the bookstore was once named the best west Michigan bookstore by Lake Magazine.

Here’s a sad quote from Lonergan: “We have some wonderful memories of standing room only author events and costume parties, and of course, our midnight Harry Potter events. The one thing the staff has agreed that we will miss the most of all is YOU,our loyal fellow book-loving customers. We want to thank you for your committed patronage, for believing in an independent bookstore when you could get your books cheaper at Walmart.” (Via Publishers Lunch)

New Lit Agent, Gwendolyn Heasley Wants Strong Characters

Artists and Artisans new agent, Gwendolyn Heasley moonlights as an author and offers a unique perspective and empathetic ear for her clients. In today’s interview she discusses exactly what she’s looking for, why having an agent who is also an author is an advantage and the importance of self-promotion for her authors.

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Fidel Castro to Publish Memoir

What does an 83-year-old former Cuban president do during retirement? Publish your autobiography series is as good of an option as any. Fidel Castro is currently penning the first volume of his memoirs, The Strategic Victory. Barbara Walters interviewed Fidel Castro in the 20/20 episode embedded above from YouTube.

The Guardian reports: “Over 25 chapters Castro recounts, using maps, photographs and diagrams, how his outnumbered rebels routed the dictator and paved the way for their triumphant march into Havana on 1 January 1959. “The defeat of the enemy offensive after 74 days of incessant combat marked a strategic turning point in the war,” according to excerpts from an article Castro published on a state website this week.”

Earlier in the week, GalleyCat reported on two other world leader-turned-authors. Gordon Brown is preparing a tome on current global financial issues. Pope Benedict XVI has written a children’s book entitled, The Friends of Jesus.

Rick Perlstein Lands Simon & Schuster’s First Enhanced eBook

nixonland23.jpgCBS News and Simon & Schuster’s Scribner imprint have teamed up to build an enhanced ebook edition of Rick Perlstein‘s 2008 book, Nixonland. It is Simon & Schuster’s first enhanced eBook.

The new edition provides a unique solution to a dilemma for publishers–where and how can they find relevant video material for a satisfying enhanced eBook? The book will feature 27 video segments woven into the original text, CBS News stories that illustrate historic moments in the book. The text also includes a bonus interview between Face the Nation anchor Bob Schieffer and Perlstein. Available in the iBookstore, the enhanced eBook retails for $15.99.

Simon & Schuster CEO Carolyn Reidy had this statement: “Since the first digital books were published, many have wondered when we would be able to add to the reading experience by exploiting the full capabilities of digital media. That moment is now, and we are especially pleased that for Nixonland, our first enhanced ebook, we are able to partner with our colleagues at CBS News to offer readers a book that combines to superb effect a critically acclaimed bestselling work with the gold standard of broadcast journalism.”

The Smell of Sweet Farts Success!

And the beat of self-published-to-book-deal success stories goes on. Author Raymond Bean never thought he’d have such success as a middle grade author. As a teacher, he was frustrated by the lack of books for boys and decided to create a book that he believed boys would read. The result? Sweet Farts and although some have criticized books like his as using the lowest common denominator to lure boys into reading, Bean believes books like these just might be the recipe booksellers and educators have been looking for.

In our in-depth interview with Bean today, he discusses his rise to success, how he bagged a top agent after years of rejections and his suggestions to other authors who want to follow in his path.

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Facebook Your Next Literary Event

facebooklogo.jpgAre you planning a literary event? Post the details on our Facebook wall so we can help spread the word.

We launched our Facebook page last week and started to build a directory of the best publisher pages on Facebook. Now we want to revive our literary events calendar–using Facebook to keep the calendar straight.

Visit our wall and add your event.

To show you how it’s done, we posted about an upcoming Greenlight Bookstore event–the Blogger/Author Pairing of Marcy Dermansky and Lizzie Skurnick.

Super Cute Bookworm Baby Melts Hearts

cutebaby.jpg

That picture of a sleeping bookworm melted the hearts of publishing professionals, writers, librarians, and readers around the country yesterday.

New mother, copywriter, and concept designer Adele Enersen started taking whimsical pictures of her sleeping baby at the blog, Mila’s Daydreams. Meet Enersen in this Offbeat Mama interview.

Here’s more from the creator: “This blog is my maternity leave hobby. While my baby is taking her nap, I create scene around her and take quick snap photos. I use only few minutes per picture, including creating idea, implementation and editing, ’cause I don’t want to disturb her sleeping and most of my time is for my family. My camera is small and inexpensive Canon IXUS 750.”

Authors Unite in Marketing

nice.jpgPublishing is a highly collaborative industry. Many will agree: behind every bestseller is a strong team of bestseller-makers.

Recently, some writers have decided to ally with several other authors in marketing efforts. One pioneer of this method is Daylle Deanna Schwartz, author of Nice Girls Can Finish First (2009).

She explained in a mediabistro.com article: “When I meet a writer I like, I reach out and offer what I know about promoting a book. Others do that for me. I’ll invite someone to be a guest on my blog, ‘Lessons from a Recovering DoorMat,’ if their topic is suitable. Sometimes writers email me for advice and I can do the same… I’ve also gotten online contacts for sites that I can syndicate my blog to. These contacts are hard to find on your own.”

Earlier this week, GalleyCat reported on Book Bloggers’ Convention’s directory of book bloggers. The rise of book bloggers’ prominence proves to be an excellent marketing channel.

Stuff White People Like Author Sells New Book

cl23.jpgAuthor and blogger Christian Lander has inked a deal to publish Whiter Shades of Pale: The Stuff White People Like from Coast to Coast from Seattle’s Sweaters to Maine’s Microbrews with Random House Trade Paperbacks.

William Morris Endeavor agent Erin Malone negotiated the deal with senior editor Jill Schwartzman. The book will come out this fall. Back in 2008, Lander’s big book deal for Stuff White People Like raised eyebrows–but the title had a good run at the bookstore. Lander (pictured, via) is now working as a staff writer on MTV’s animated series, Good Vibes.

Here’s more about the book: “an hilarious ‘Ph.D. in white culture,’ featuring anthropological illustrations and regional breakdowns that delineate the seemingly subtle differences between white people across the US and all over the globe.”

Hephzibah Anderson Talks Chastity on The Colbert Report

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Author Hephzibah Anderson appeared on The Colbert Report recently to promote her new book, Chastened: The Unexpected Story of My Year Without Sex.

This kind of stunt nonfiction has definitely proven to be a popular hit. A.J. JacobsThe Year of Living Biblically explored life as an obsessive devotee to the Old and New Testament. Gretchen Rubin‘s The Happiness Project chronicled a year in a woman’s life in the pursuit to increase everyday happiness. Anderson has worked at publications including Observer and the Daily Mail.

The Huffington Post has more about her appearance: “Anderson made her decision after seeing an ex-boyfriend shopping for an engagement ring and realizing no man had told her he’d loved her for ten years. She found that abstaining allowed her to discover what she actually wanted from sex and awakened her to how much pressure was being put on women to have sex without emotion.”

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