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Archives: September 2012

Anne Rice Ponders Lestat Comeback on Facebook

Novelist Anne Rice wrote an intriguing one-sentence post on Facebook recently: “If you want Lestat to come back, can you tell me why in one sentence?”

Her die-hard fans left more than 8,100 comments explaining why they hoped she’d bring back the vampire who starred in her beloved Vampire Chronicles series (including her bestseller, The Vampire Lestat). She followed up the post with another short and cryptic update: “In one sentence, what one thing do you NOT like about Lestat?”

Would you read a new Lestat book? Could thousands of fans convince the horror novelist to bring back her famous character?

Susan Richards Shreve, Peter Christian Hall & Leon Major Get Booked

Here are some literary events to jump-start your week. To get your event posted on our calendar, visit our Facebook Your Literary Event page. Please post your event at least one week prior to its date.

Writers Susan Richards Shreve and Elizabeth Strout will be coming together to read from their books and discuss their work. See them on Tuesday, September 25th at the Center for Fiction starting 7:00 p.m. (New York, NY)

The next “How I Learned…” reading series event will tackle the subject, “that was then, this is now.” Join in on Wednesday, September 26th at the Happy Ending Lounge starting 8:00 p.m. (New York, NY)

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How to Improve Your Online Writing Portfolio

Do you need a better way to share your published articles, stories and excerpts online? Contently has a free tool t0 upgrade your online writing portfolio.

On today’s edition of the Morning Media Menu, Social Times editor Devon Glenn discussed Contently’s new Portfolio+ network. Glenn also shared advice for making your portfolio look its best online. Follow this link to sign up for the new service.

Press play below to listen to the podcast. Here’s more from SocialTimes: “Writers, like designers, are asked to show samples of what they can do before they are hired … Contently’s design gives freelancers who might be overlooked on other sites a chance to show, not tell, what they can do. (It’s a phrase that writers hear a lot!) Writers can search for their stories online or enter them manually into the system. A flexible interface displays the images, text excerpts, and share counts for Web articles on one page that writers can adjust to suit their needs. Old-school journalists can also upload copies of their print work.”

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Tig Notaro Lands Deal for Autobiographical Essay Book

Comedian Tig Notaro has inked a book deal with HarperCollins’ Ecco imprint for a collection of funny autobiographical essays.

Above, we’ve embedded video of Notaro performing her “No Moleste” routine, a dry twist on a simple hotel sign in Mexico. Marc Gerald from The Agency Group negotiated the deal with executive editor Hilary Redmon. She has performed on on Conan, This American Life, Community and The Sarah Silverman Program.

Here’s more from the release: “In her debut collection, Tig writes about her early years in Mississippi and Texas; her first decade in Los Angeles; and this tumultuous past year, in which, among other things, her mother died and she was diagnosed with breast cancer: a diagnosis which she worked into a now legendary stand-up routine.”

Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Partners with Libboo For Social Media Promotion

Houghton Mifflin Harcourt has partnered with social networking site for readers Libboo. The two companies have launched an online pilot program to help HMH promote books.

AppNewser has more about the partnership: “The two Boston-based companies have created a three-month program to offer readers access to some of their books. Readers who share these books through their own social networks will be able to earn free eBooks. ‘Libboo’s unique platform allows our authors to share their work with an even wider audience using the power of social media,’ stated Gary Gentel, president of HMH’s trade and reference division.”

HMH will be showcasing the new books Diving Belles by Lucy Wood, The Heart and the Fist by Eric Greitens and How Children Succeed  by Paul Tough, as well as a number of previously published titles by HMH authors.

One Shade of Grey at Persephone Books

The Piccadilly branch of the UK bookseller Waterstones spoofed E. L. James and Fifty Shades of Grey, creating an eye-catching display of titles from Persephone Books–the sleek covers all decorated with the same “One Shade of Grey.”

We’ve embedded a photograph of the display above, it reads: “Oh the bliss of Persephone Books! Beautiful editions of titles by neglected female writers.” Persephone Books is a UK publisher that releases both fiction and nonfiction. You can explore their catalog at this link.

Here’s more from the publisher: “Waterstones in Piccadilly has become our new favourite shop ever – totally without telling us they have done this fantastic display – very many thanks to cathyreadsbooks for taking the photograph. For weeks we have resisted making comments about really good grey books as opposed to really not good – ‘One Shade of Grey’ is a far wittier way of doing it.” (Via.)

Carolrhoda Books Seeks Unagented YA Manuscripts for Limited Time

Lerner Publishing Group’s Carolrhoda Books occasionally accepts unagented submissions. According to editorial director Andrew Karre, the publisher will take young-adult manuscripts from October 1st until October 31st.

Follow this link to read all the details and Karre’s instructions. Karre added that he does not like university-aged protagonists, manuscripts that exceeds 100,000 words or books that “have series potential.” He prefers projects that feature unusual people, unfamiliar mythologies and doomed romance.

Karre included three tips for authors: “Things I require: That you follow my submission guidelines. That your cover letter be very brief and you not agonize over it for more than twenty minutes. Your extreme patience. I’m slow. I often return to manuscripts several times before I make a decision.”

ALA President Challenges ‘Discriminatory’ eBook Policies

The American Library Association’s president Maureen Sullivan released an open letter to publishers today, singling out the “discriminatory” eBook library policies of three major publishers.

The letter focused on how Simon & Schuster, Macmillan, and Penguin do not offer digital books to many of the 169 million public library users around the country. Here’s an excerpt:

Librarians have a particular concern for vulnerable populations that may not have any other access to books and electronic content, including individuals and families who are homebound or low-income. To deny these library users access to ebooks that are available to others – and which libraries are eager to purchase on their behalf – is discriminatory. We have met and talked sincerely with many of these publishers. We have sought common ground by exploring new business models and library lending practices. But these conversations only matter if they are followed by action: Simon & Schuster must sell to libraries. Macmillan must implement its proposed pilot. Penguin must accelerate and expand its pilots beyond two urban New York libraries.

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J.K. Rowling & The Casual Vacancy Spoilers

In a long profile of J.K. Rowling at The New Yorker, journalist Ian Parker shared some juicy tidbits about The Casual Vacancy–a novel for adults by the Harry Potter author that has been guarded by nondisclosure agreements and a strict embargo.

If you want to find out more about the top secret novel before it comes out on September 27th, you should read the whole “Mugglemarch” profile.

SPOILER ALERT: If you don’t want to know more about the book, you should stop reading now. Below, we’ve collected five spoilers from the article that show us more about the book.

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Pete Hamill Wins Best of Brooklyn, Inc. Award

Journalist and author Pete Hamill won the annual Best of Brooklyn, Inc. (BoBi) Award, a prize the recognizing a literary figure whose work embraces  the Brooklyn spirit. In the video embedded above, Hamill spoke about the honor.

This past Sunday, readers from all over New York City headed to the seventh annual Brooklyn Book Festival. Since its inception, the festival has grown dramatically; this year’s event boasted more than 280 author appearances and scheduled more than 104 panels.

Here’s more from the release: “The eldest son of Irish immigrant parents, Pete Hamill was born in Park Slope, Brooklyn. He left school at age 16 to work in the Brooklyn Navy Yard and attend night classes at the Cartoonists and Illustrators School with the intent of becoming a comic book artist. After service in the U.S. Navy, he began his career as a journalist, and over the ensuing decades covered both domestic and international wars and conflicts. Hamill is the author of 18 books, including the best-selling A Drinking Life, the novels Snow in AugustTabloid City and Forever, and a collection of short stories, The Christmas Kid, to be released in October. He also served as editor-in-chief of the New York Post and the New York Daily News.”

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