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Archives: October 2012

Free Turkey City Lexicon for Science Fiction Writers

Science fiction writer Charles Stross held an Ask Me Anything interview on Reddit, sharing tips for aspiring writers.

Stross (pictured, via) shared a link to the free Turkey City Lexicon, a handy collection of overused cliches, terms and techniques in science fiction writing (compiled by Bruce Sterling and Lewis Shiner). However, many of the problems mentioned in the free collection can help all kinds of writers.

Here’s more about the handbook: “This manual is intended to focus on the special needs of the science fiction workshop. Having an accurate and descriptive critical term for a common SF problem makes it easier to recognize and discuss … The terms here were generally developed over a period of many years in many workshops. Those identified with a particular writer are acknowledged in parentheses at the end of the entry.”

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Jessica Sorensen Tops Self-Published Bestsellers List

Novelist Jessica Sorensen led our Self-Published Bestsellers List this week with the The Secret of Ella and Micha.

To help GalleyCat readers discover self-published authors, we have compiled lists of the top eBooks in three major marketplaces for self-published digital books: Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Smashwords.

We update these lists every week, tracking how writers perform inside these booming marketplaces. You can read all the lists below, complete with links to each book. If you are an author, check out our Free Sites to Promote Your eBook post and our How To Sell Your Self-Published Book in Bookstores post and our How to Pitch Your Book to Online Outlets post.

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Don’t Leave Your Pets Behind

The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) has posted an important note about caring for your Galley Pet during Hurricane Sandy. In the event that you evacuate, do not leave your pets behind–in New York and New Jersey, evacuation centers must take your pets.

In addition ASPCA recommends that you post a rescue information for your pets, including “the number and types of pets present, as well as your veterinarian’s contact information.” The ASPCA Pet Safety Pack has more. Also, be sure that your pet is wearing ID tags and collars during the storm.

Here’s more from the group: “ASPCA is preparing to assist thousands of animals in the region affected by Hurricane Sandy, and wants to remind all area residents to stay indoors until the hurricane passes and it is safe for both people and pets to be outside. The ASPCA is also ready to assist with water rescues as needed. If you have been ordered to evacuate, please do not leave your pets behind. All evacuation centers in New York City are required to accept pets.”

Hurricane Sandy Resources

As Hurricane Sandy nears the East Coast, we wanted to share some resources for our readers. We hope everyone stays safe during this difficult time.

New York City has issued this warning: “A mandatory evacuation order is in effect for residents in Zone A areas, the Rockaways, Hamilton Beach, and City Island. If you live in Zone A, leave immediately. Consider staying with friends or family outside the affected area. If you cannot stay with family or friends, shelters are open in public schools around the city.”

If you live in New York City, check to see if you are in a Hurricane Evacuation Zone.

Here is a list of shelters in New York City.

State-by-State Guide to Hurricane Sandy at The New York Times.

How to report storm damage in New York City.

Track flooding in the region with this Google Map.

Con Edison created a power outage map of the region.

How to register with American Red Cross Safe & Sound registry when the storm has passed.

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Markus Dohle Writes To Random House Employees

After Random House and Penguin announced their merger today, Random House CEO Markus Dohle (and CEO of the new Penguin Random House conglomerate) sent a letter to his employees.

Here’s an excerpt:  ”For today, and in the months ahead, it is business as usual. Right now, our priority is publishing our fall lists to finish our fourth quarter as strongly as our previous three, and to plan the publishing campaigns for our winter and spring titles. As always, I know I can count on you. I want you to know that I understand how difficult it is not having all of the details immediately about our new company. In order to overcome the uncertainty for all of you I will communicate and share with you directly and regularly as we move toward this transition, and I will do so with complete openness and transparency.”

We’ve included his complete letter below–what do you think the publishing world will look like with this new conglomerate? (Image via)

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What Writers & Publishers Need To Know About deviantART

Most of our readers have never visited the community of writers, artists and creators at deviantART, but there are many literary resources to be discovered inside the social network with millions of members.

On the Morning Media Menu today, we spoke with Ron Martino, the producer and director deviantART Network. Martino explained how writers have found audiences and book deals from the site, giving tips for creators looking to explore the social network.

Martino also outlined the community’s Oddyssey II project, a collaborative writing project guided by novelist Clive Barker–all writers can enter this massive effort to crowdsource a new novel from within the  deviantART community.

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FEMA Administrator Recommends Parents Read to Their Children as Storm Approaches

As Hurricane Sandy nears the East Coast, FEMA administrator Craig Fugate urged parents to read with their children.

If you want to know how Hurricane Sandy will affect your state, visit the State-by-State  Guide to Hurricane Sandy at The New York Times.

Readers have been using the #StormReads hashtag to talk about the books they are reading during this difficult time. We’ve embedded some of these tweets below.

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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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Make an Interactive Book App For iOS or Android Using Moglue

Moglue, a software company that lets you build interactive eBook apps for iOS and Android, has updated its platform making it easier to build and test eBook apps.

The company has rolled out the MoglueBuilder, a tool which is used to create interactive eBooks without programming skills, as well as the MoglueViewer, which you can use to preview the eBook apps on the device it is intended for. Authors and publishers an follow the tool to add their content and create an eBook app. These can include interactive features.

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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.”