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Archives: August 2013

Twitter Starts To Connect Stories To Authors

Twitter has started to link online stories to the Twitter account of the person who wrote the article. AllTwitter contributor Allison Stadd illustrated the technique by responding to a New York Times article (image embedded above).

When a reader tweets a link to certain articles, the tweet will automatically include the author as well. Our sibling blog AllTwitter has more details:

It’s a welcome update for journalists and bloggers, whose work often becomes separated from their bylines as it disperses across social networks. I personally make an effort to mention whoever wrote an article in a tweet that I send about the piece, but not always, and it’s certainly faster to skip that step. The feature seems to be active only on mobile, and only for certain news organizations (Huffington Post, New York Times, CNN, etc.).

Mediabistro Course

The Art of the Book Review

The Art of the Book ReviewStarting August 4, learn how to get paid to write reviews that will influence the publishing landscape! Taught by a Publishers Weekly book critic, you'll learn how to recommend a book to its audience, write reviews of varying lengths, tailor a review to a specific publication and more! You'll leave this course with two original reviews and a list of paying markets for book reviews. Register now! 

Barack Obama Writes To Booksellers

President Barack Obama has sent a long letter to New England Independent Booksellers Association executive director Steve FischerPublishers Weekly has the complete letter.

Responding to independent bookseller outcry over Obama’s visit to an Amazon warehouse, the President’s letter focused on small business initiatives of the Obama administration, but did not mention books or Amazon. What do you think? Here’s an excerpt:

I will continue to do everything in my power to ensure America remains the best place on Earth to turn a great idea into a successful business. I encourage small business owners to take advantage of the on-the-ground counseling resources available through SBA District Offices, and local Small Business Development Centers and Women’s Business Centers. We have provided funding for those organizations to help businesses connect with the resources they need.

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Kate Atkinson, L.M. Augustine, & Shari Aupke: Coming Attractions

Here are some handpicked titles from our Coming Attractions page. Want to include your book? Just read our Share Your New Book with GalleyCat Readers post for all the details.

A Groovy Chef Cooks At Home by Shari Aupke: “This book, loaded with 70 of her favorite recipes, gives the inside view of what a real life everyday chef experiences. It takes you on a journey through test recipes, the creative process of writing food columns (read all about her Bewitching experience for one of her favorite food columns), and how she really feeds her family.” (March 2013)

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5 Million Copies of ‘Fifty Shades’ Books Sold in First Half of 2013

Fifty Shades of Grey is the publishing gift that keeps on giving. E L James sold five million print and eBook copies of her erotic trilogy around the world during the first six months of 2013 (sales through Random House’s English, German and Spanish-language publishing arms).

Random House CEO Markus Dohle praised the company’s biggest bestsellers in a letter to employees today, marking company’s final financial results before the Penguin Random House merger took effect. We’ve reprinted the complete letter below, but here’s an excerpt:

INFERNO by Dan Brown sold more than four million copies in its first six weeks throughout Random House’s English-language territories. Sheryl Sandberg’s LEAN IN and WONDER by R. J. Palacio sold hundreds of thousands of copies in North America and the UK, while helping set social agendas and spurring cultural dialogues. The FIFTY SHADES trilogy by E L James added another five million print and eBooks to its megamillion-copy English-, German-, and Spanish-language Random House sales to date.

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Free Books To Celebrate Mary Shelley’s Birthday

Happy birthday, Mary Shelley! To celebrate her birthday, we’ve rounded up a collection of free eBooks you can read from the celebrated author of Frankenstein.

Washington Post books section deputy editor Ron Charles wrote a short essay about her most famous book. here’s an excerpt:

Shelley and her lover, Percy Shelley, were on vacation in Geneva when their traveling companions Lord Byron and John Polidori proposed they play the sort of party game that brilliant Romantic writers played before Trivial Pursuits: Who can write the best horror story? Polidori gave us “The Vampyre”; Mary Shelley dreamed up the too-bold scientist.

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Seamus Heaney Has Died

Nobel Prize winning poet Seamus Heaney has passed away. He was 74.

Follow the links below to read free poems by Heaney from the Poetry Foundation. Here’s more about his early life from the Nobel Prize site:

The poet’s mother came from a family called McCann whose connections were more with the modern world than with the traditional rural economy; her uncles and relations were employed in the local linen mill and an aunt had worked “in service” to the mill owners’ family. The poet has commented on the fact that his parentage thus contains both the Ireland of the cattle-herding Gaelic past and the Ulster of the Industrial Revolution; indeed, he considers this to have been a significant tension in his background, something which corresponds to another inner tension also inherited from his parents, namely that between speech and silence. His father was notably sparing of talk and his mother notably ready to speak out, a circumstance which Seamus Heaney believes to have been fundamental to the “quarrel with himself” out of which his poetry arises.

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2013 Thurber Prize Finalists Announced

Three finalists have been picked for 2013 Thurber Prize for American Humor. The $5,000 prize, named after author James Thurber, honors an “outstanding book of humor writing” for the year.

The finalists include Dave Barry and Alan Zweibel (Lunatics), Dan Zevin (Dan Gets a Mini-Van), and Shalom Auslander (Hope, A Tragedy). Past winners of this award include David SedarisSteve Hely, and Calvin Trillin. Here’s more from the release:

Now celebrating its 29th year, Thurber House is based in the boyhood home of author, humorist, and New Yorker cartoonist, James Thurber, in Columbus, Ohio. The award is an annual prize and will be presented with the support of the Greater Columbus Arts Council at a ceremony at Carolines on Broadway in New York City on September 30.

Bluewater Productions Offers Free Ad Space for Nonprofits

The comics company Bluewater Productions will dedicate “considerable ad-space in their comic books and website” to let nonprofit organizations run free ads.

You can visit the company’s contact page to connect. Many nonprofits have placed ads in the past, including PETA, Adelphi Breast Cancer, Doctors Without Borders, The Comic Book Legal Defense Fund and more. Here’s more from the release:

By offering free ad-space Bluewater aims to help the nonprofit community in relieving the stress of advertisement costs that many non-profits grapple with. Any eligible 501c3 nonprofits are encouraged to submit full-page advertisements for our publications. Each released book will allow for two to three advertisements, considered on a first come first serve basis.

Harlan Ellison Starts His Own YouTube Channel

Author Harlan Ellison has started his own YouTube channel. We’ve embedded his brief introductory video above…

The great science fiction author already has an official site and the Art Deco Dining Pavilion where fans can discuss his work. Ellison has his own dramatic style on camera, so we look forward to seeing what gets posted on the site. Check it out:

Welcome to Ellison Wonderland, the Harlan Ellison Youtube Channel. This is the home of all things Ellisonian. Lectures, TV appearances, mug shots, film clips, and anything else we or Harlan can think of to throw at you on a regular basis. Some of the stuff here has been floating around the interwebs for a while, but a lot of it will be making its first appearance ever here. And who knows? Harlan himself may provide us with some new material from time to time. Keep checking in to find out!

James Spader To Play Ultron in ‘The Avengers’ Sequel

Actor James Spader will play Marvel supervillain Ultron in Avengers: Age of Ultron, the May 2015 sequel to The AvengersFollow this link to see Ultron’s appearances in Marvel comic books.

Ultron made his first Marvel appearance in Avengers No. 54, his true identity hidden as Crimson Cowl. Using Marvel’s digital comic reading tool, you can sample his appearances in Avengers No. 55 (pictured), Avengers No. 201 and Avengers No. 202. You can read more about Ultron’s comic book legacy at Wikipedia (spoilers follow):

 The character leads the Masters of Evil against the Avengers, having hypnotized Edwin Jarvis into working for him. In the following issue, #55 (Aug. 1968), the character is identified as Ultron-5, the living automaton, although his origin is still unknown.[2] In Avengers 57 – 58 (Oct-Nov. 1968) in aflashback sequence it is revealed that Ultron is the creator of the “synthezoid” the Vision, whom it tries to use as a weapon to destroy the Avengers.

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