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Posts Tagged ‘Neal Pollack’

How Many Copies Make a Literary Bestseller?

In a long interview at The Onion‘s AV Club, novelist Neal Pollack gave readers a frank look at his bookselling track record.

He shared real numbers behind the career of a literary writer who achieved bestseller status and a big book deal. Aspiring writers should read the whole interview for more literary guidance.

What do you think–how many copies make a literary bestseller?

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Personal Essay Writing

Personal Essay WritingStarting October 28, work with a published journalist to draft, edit, and sell your first-person essays! Jessica Olien will help you to workshop your writing so that it's ready to pitch to editors. You'll learn how to tell your personal story, self-edit you work to assess voice, style, and tone, and sell your essays for publication. Register now!

Amazon Unveils $119 Kindle Paperwhite

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos unveiled the $119 Kindle Paperwhite WiFi eReader at a Santa Monica press conference today. The 3G edition will cost $179. AppNewser has more about the new Kindle Fire HD that was also revealed at the event.

It began with a television spot showing Amazon delivery boxes on a stoop. “We’re the people with a smile on the box,” it read, reminding this GalleyCat editor of a famous New Yorker cover.

Bezos explained: “People don’t want gadgets anymore, they want services. They want services that improve over time” and introduced Kindle Paperwhite. The reading device has 25 percent more contrast compared to the original device and 62 percent more pixels per page. It has capacitive touch and a new front light system that Amazon took four years to develop.

“It’s exactly light ambient light,” he said. It can get eight weeks of battery life, even when the device is lit. He demonstrated the tool with George R. R. Martin‘s best selling novel, Game of Thrones. The device also tells how many minutes of reading you have left in a book. You can also “x-ray” a title, seeing characters and key terms in the digital book.

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Digital Anthology Raises Money for Joplin Schools Tornado Relief Fund

A group of authors have teamed up for the Writing Off Script: Writers on the Influence of Cinema digital anthology, a book of essays raising money for the Joplin Schools Tornado Relief Fund.

The authors (listed below) will write essays on how movies have influenced their work. Follow this link to read an essay from the collection. Cynthia Hawkins will edit the anthology and Simon Smithson of Calavera Books will publish it on December 1st.

Here’s more about the fundraiser: “[Proceeds] will go to the Joplin Eagles Television 14 Program through the Joplin Schools Tornado Relief Fund. The JET 14 Program instructs 160 students each school year in the fundamentals of film production and broadcasting. During the F-5 tornado that struck Joplin, Missouri on May 22, 2011, 54% of Joplin’s students lived in the path of the tornado, eight schools including the city’s high school were destroyed or significantly damaged, and one teacher and seven students were killed.”

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Neal Pollack Leads Midlist Shift To Self-Publishing

Journalist and author Neal Pollack wrote an essay in The New York Times Magazine over the weekend, explaining why it makes sense for midlist authors to self-publish–pointing to a dramatic shift in publishing tactics for authors with a medium-sized and loyal audience.

Here’s an excerpt: “[F]or a writer like me, which is to say, most working writers — midcareer, midlist, middle-aged, more or less middlebrow, and somewhat Internet savvy — self-publishing seems to make a lot of sense at this point. Early in my career, because of some lucky breaks and a kinder economy, I was able to get advances that helped me support my family over the months it took to write a book … Now that the advances are smaller and the technology is available, why not start appealing directly to those readers?”

Pollack will self-publish his new novel, Jewball. He has already posted a free preview of the book, focused on the adventures of an American-Jewish basketball team in 1937. (Via Ed Champion)

Knopf Names Dobrowolski Assistant Manager, Domestic Rights

Knopf announced yesterday that Thomas Dombrowolski has been named Assistant Manager of its Domestic Rights Division. “Since his arrival two years ago, Thomas has become a key member of the department, demonstrating a keen awareness of the rights marketplace,” said Domestic Rights Director Sean Yule in the announcement. “He has a good sense of what can work as an excerpt and has arranged major serial placement for authors including Daniel Kehlmann, Olaf Olafsson, Marjane Satrapi and Neal Pollack.” Dombrowolski began his publishing career in 2002 as an assistant in the contracts department at Doubleday Broadway, and has also worked at Bantam Dell and HarperCollins.

Miller Moves from Vintage to Knopf

PW Daily reports that Vintage/Anchor senior editor Andrew Miller is moving floors in the Random House building as a result of his new gig as a senior editor at Knopf. “Andrew is an exceptional editor who, in his tenure at Vintage/Anchor, has demonstrated a keen eye for topical nonfiction,” said Knopf chairman and editor-in-chief Sonny Mehta in yesterday’s announcement. Miller has edited books by Victor Davis Hanson, Tom Bissell, James Fallows and Neal Pollack, as well as worked with authors including Robert Caro, David Remnick, Lawrence Wright, Robert Kagan, Hampton Sides, and Chuck Palahniuk.

Daddies Dish the Dirt on Parenting

Trust the Boston Herald’s Lauren Beckham Falcone to craft a trend piece out of Neal Pollack‘s just-published memoir ALTERNADAD, Steve Almond‘s daddyblog for Nerve and other upcoming books like MACK DADDY: MASTERING FATHERHOOD WITHOUT LOSING YOUR STYLE, YOUR COOL AND YOUR MIND. Because – guess what! – daddy diaries are the new mommy memoirs, as the millennium’s first-time fathers confront the ultimate antidote to cool – a kid. “I’ve never been lumped into a genre,” said Pollack. “When I turned my blog into a daddy blog, I got this sense that there was a vast universe out there with similar concerns and interests.”

Of course, fatherhood led to bestsellers by Bill Cosby and Paul Reiser in the late 80s and early 90s, but as Publishers Weekly’s Karen Holt points out, “what you’re seeing now is the genre of the cool dad – people who always thought they were much too cool to be parents – trying to figure it all out. There’s a built-in conflict that makes for an interesting book.” But will the trend be successful, or will it suffer the same fate as its fictional cousin, lad lit? Holt admits the latter trend “didn’t work” but “this is more of an authentic experience that appeals to an older man in his 30s and 40s. It’s also a way for all of those men out there breaking new parenting ground – the hipster who still goes out, who has a career, who is a good father. They can see themselves reflected in books.”