Friday, July 15, 2005

Friday Morning Bagels and Lox (Our cream cheese spoiled. Sorry.)

Happy Friday. Help yourselves to the chow. Leave a poppy-seed for me, will you?

Here is another curious "conversion" of publishing and the Web. Read this
press release. And wouldn't you know, Macmillan has their hand in it again (sort of.) What are these guys up to? Lots of experimentation going on over there.

Simply put: “The Friday Project is the first mainstream publishing company to specialise in producing books inspired by popular websites.” Where is the comment about no advance?

Got a website or blog that gets a bazillion hits an hour? Then
giddy-up, little doggie.

How about a blast from the past? In this
four year old article from MJ Rose for Wired Magazine, we find two funny items:

(1) That the price of POD titles is about to go up! And,
(2) Writers are not getting paid in a timely manner by their publishers.

Two things that may never change in this world.

And how about this humorous news story from Barnes and Noble from 1999? I guess printing the books out in the brick-and-mortar stores never came to fruition.

A different kind of "bestseller" list. Here is a smattering of POD publishers (15) in order of the most titles that currently hold a rank of 10,000 or better.

3: Lulu

2: Xulon

1: iUniverse, Xlibris, Authorhouse, Llumina, Trafford, Virtualbookworm, Aventine

0: Booklocker, Booksurge, Heliographica, Cafepress, PublishAmerica, Outskirts Press

Just out of curiosity, I tried to see how many Knopf had under 10,000. I stopped counting when I got to 200.


Two faithful readers asked me (almost) the same question over a two hour period, so now I feel obliged to answer. Here it is:

Q: What is the most egregious thing a legitimate agent could do to turn you off from representation (I'm paraphrasing here.)

A: The answer was quite simple: Be wary of agents that write and sell their own books. Most agents I know agree that being a writer (or even an editor) is quite a different skill set from an agent. Now, add to that how phenomenally busy agents are, how limited their time is, how they can never "get to responding to query letters" or "sending out the next round of submissions" and it makes one wonder where they're getting the time to write, edit and submit (read it three more times: submit) to houses and/or other agents. These are clowns who are writer wanna-be types and think they can do better (I've read many and only one (so far) struck me as worthy: Noah Lukeman's FIRST FIVE PAGES.) Don't get me wrong--some of these folks are fine agents. But let's be honest: the real reason they get published at all? Duh.

The priority of these agents is likely to be askew. And in case you haven't noticed,













And is it just me, or has RATED F been given life?


And lastly, here is an article about author Beth Lisick. It's really just usual promotional stuff. But the interesting note here is this: Regardless of the fact that her book was published through HarperCollins (Reganbooks), she said, "I'd be happy if it sold a thousand copies." What an industry.

Free antacids on the counter, right next to the tip jar.

Back to treasure on Monday.