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Authors

Authors Guild Calls Amazon eBook Offer in Hachette Dispute “Highly Disingenuous”

authors_guildWhile Amazon’s latest offer in its ongoing dispute with the Hachette Book Group may look like they are trying to be more friendly towards authors, the Authors Guild isn’t buying it.

Essentially on Tuesday, Amazon told Hachette that they would restock their author’s books if the publishers promised to give the authors 100 percent of the revenues on eBooks sold until the dispute between the companies is resolved.

Richard Russo, novelist and co-Vice President of the Authors Guild, published an open letter to Amazon responding to the offer and calling the offer “highly disingenuous.” Read more

Mediabistro Course

Novel Writing: Editing Your Draft

Novel Writing: Editing Your DraftStarting July 16, workshop your novel in-progress with a published author! Erika Mailman's course will function as a workshop, with the emphasis on sharing your work for review and providing critiques for your peers. By the end of this class you'll have up to 75 pages of you novel workshopped and developed patterns to improve your writing. Register now! 

George R.R. Martin Gives the Finger to Those Speculating His Death

georgerrmartinSci-fi author George R.R. Martin does not appreciate speculation that he won’t live to finish the last two books in the Game of Thrones series.

In an interview with the Swiss daily newspaper Tages-Anzeiger, the 65 year-old author told the interviewer that he finds the subject offensive and said, “F*ck you to those people,” while giving the finger to the camera.

Follow this link to watch the video. (Via Gawker).

Elizabeth Lowell on Romance & the Evolution of Self-Publishing

19051Author Elizabeth Lowell has been writing romantic thrillers for almost 30 years. The best selling author, who got her start in traditional publishing, is now taking advantage of her genre’s popularity in eBooks by self-publishing many of her backlist titles. We caught up with Lowell to discuss how the romance genre has evolved over the years and how she is harnessing the digital changes that are currently taking place in publishing.

GalleyCat (GC): As a veteran to romance thrillers, what do you think of the surge in popularity of this genre in recent years? How has the market evolved over the years?

Elizabeth Lowell (EL): It’s fantastic that the market for romantic suspense has exploded in the last decade or so.  It’s a great time to be a genre fiction writer–and reader–in general. Sub genres like romantic suspense, historical romance, etc. tend to come and go and often return again to popularity. Reader preferences are definitely cyclical things and all of these categories have flourished, faded and then died back to a core of fans, then risen once again. Romantic suspense in particular has been very popular for the last 25 years or so, which I think tends to indicate there was a pent up demand that was not being met by the market. Read more

Madeline Exhibit Opens in NY

madelineThe New York Historical Society’s Madeline-inspired art exhibition opened up last weekend, celebrating the 75th anniversary of the first book’s publication.

The “Madeline in New York: The Art of Ludwig Bemelmans” show celebrates the artwork of Ludwig Bemelmans, the creator of the classic children’s book series. The show boasts more than 90 original art pieces including illustrations from the Madeline series, as well as Bemelmans’ drawings of the old Ritz Hotel in New York and panels from the Onassis yacht.

UnBeige has more about the show and how Bemelman got into publishing: “After a Viking editor suggested he create children’s books, Bemelmans obliged. As for the Madeline character, ‘She’s a little bit of me, my mother, my wife and [daughter], Barbara. She’s a concoction of people,’ Bemelmans once said. He created the French schoolgirl while at Pete’s Tavern in Gramercy Park, and it gave him great comfort. ‘For me, Madeline is therapy in the dark hours.’”

The show is up through October 19th.

 

Average UK Author Salary Down 29% From 2005

ALCSThe average salary for an author in the UK dropped 29 percent to £11,000 a year  in 2013 from 2005, according to a new study from the Authors’ Licensing & Collecting Society (ALCS) done in conjunction with Queen Mary, University of London.

In fact, according to the “What Are Words Worth Now?” study, the majority of authors are finding it difficult to make a living from writing. In 2013, only 11.5 percent of professional authors reported earning their income just from writing. Back in 2005, 40 percent of authors reported living off of writing alone.

Here is more from the ALCS blog: “In contrast to the sharp decline in earnings of professional authors, the wealth generated by the UK creative industries is on the increase. Statistics produced by the Department of Culture, Media and Sport in 2014 show that the creative industries are now worth £71.4 billion per year to the UK economy (over £8 million per hour) and the UK is reported as having “the largest creative sector of the European Union”, and being “the most successful exporter of cultural good and services in the world”, according to UNESCO.” (Via The Guardian).

Elizabeth Gilbert: ‘Ask yourself if this sentence, paragraph, or chapter truly furthers the narrative. If not, chuck it.’

Elizabeth GilbertAuthor Elizabeth Gilbert achieved great success with her memoir Eat Pray Love. Since the publication of that book, she has delivered two popular TED talks and written a second memoir entitled Committed and a novel called The Signature of All Things. Check out the highlights from our interview below…

Q: How did you land your first book deal?
A: I spent about six years sending my short stories out to magazines, and collecting rejections. Then one day Esquire bought one of my stories out of the slush pile and published it. It was through this publication that I found my agent (or, rather, that my agent found me). She then negotiated a book deal on my behalf.

I had a collection of short stories written and ready to go, but I had to promise the publisher that I would deliver a novel, in order to seal the deal. Having never before written a novel, this was rather frightening. But you have to deliver the goods, once you sign that contract, or else they get fussy and want their money back — which is a good motivation to get your work done…

Read more

Hillary Clinton’s Book Banned in China

hillaryclintonHillary Clinton’s new memoir Hard Choices is being distributed in many languages in bookstores around the globe. But it will not be translated into Chinese, nor will it be distributed in China.

In the book, Clinton speaks critically of the Chinese government and its censorship practices. In turn, the publisher has not been able to find a Chinese publisher or distribution. Simon & Schuster president Jonathan Karp told Buzzfeed that this ban is “outrageous and unfortunate.”

BuzzFeed has more: “Karp said Simon & Schuster made a concerted effort to find a Chinese publisher, but there was no interest. Executives didn’t even reach the point of negotiating with a Chinese publishing house. ‘It’s been deafening silence,’ said Karp.”

Authors Dress Up as Their Favorite Storybook Characters For Photo Exhibit

storymuseumThe Storybook Museum in the UK has a new exhibit up by photographer Cambridge Jones featuring 26 British authors dressed up as their favorite storybook characters.

Readers are also encouraged to join in the fun and share photos of themselves dressed up as storybook characters in an online gallery.

Here is more about the event: “Children’s Laureate Malorie Blackman metamorphoses into the Wicked Witch of the West. Terry Pratchett achieves outlaw status as Just William. And Neil Gaiman gets stripey as a well-known woodland creature. Other authors taking part include Julia Donaldson, Anthony Horowitz, Kevin Crossley-Holland, Jamila Gavin, Charlie Higson, Shirley Hughes, Terry Jones, Geraldine McCaughrean, Michael Morpurgo, Terry Pratchett, Francesca Simon and Benjamin Zephaniah.” Read more

Neil Gaiman Reads Two Stories & Sings at Carnegie Hall

4231596_origAuthor Neil Gaiman treated his fans to not one, but two stories during his performance at Carnegie Hall.

Gaiman read his version of Hansel & Gretel during the first half of the show. Toon Books will release the finished graphic novel, which features illustrations by artist Lorenzo Mattotti, on October 28th.

After intermission, Gaiman recited his short story “The Truth is a Cave in the Black Mountains” while the FourPlay Quartet played music and paintings by illustrator Eddie Campbell were displayed. At the end of the night, Gaiman sang the song “Psycho.” Follow this link to watch hear Gaiman’s singing.

Stephen King’s Joyland Has Helped Emily Schultz Sell Her Backlist Novel

emilyschultzAuthor Emily Schultz has seen a new interest in her eight year old novel Joyland, thanks to Stephen King.

King released a book with the same name last year and since then Schultz has seen a spike in sales for her novel. She has created a Tumblr page to document the experience and highlight how she is spending the extra money that she has earned. Check it out:

That was cool, until a few King readers bought the e-book version of my novel by mistake and started leaving negative and confused Amazon reviews. I asked Amazon to change their search results to keep people from buying the wrong book but never heard back. Apparently there were a lot of confused readers as this week I got a—for me—big royalty check for those mistaken books. I’m not so upset anymore. Sure, it’s more a pleasant surprise than a fortune, and I’m stuck with those reviews, but I thought a blog detailing how we’re spending the Stephen King money would be a nice way to end this funny and strange story.

 

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