Romance, Historical, Contemporary, Paranormal, Young Adult, Book reviews, industry news, and commentary from a reader's point of view

Wednesday Day Midday Links: Jane Friedman looking at romance books?

emoticon_tongueSo yesterday the article I read about Jane Friedman’s $3 million capital venture gave me the impression that she was looking to move books into movies. Today on Galley Cat, there is some suggestion that her new venture is a digital publishing one and that she is looking to bring out of print titles into the digital marketplace.   Possibly she is talking to Kensington (Kensington had been in talks with Samhain at one time but that fell through).   Jane Friedman’s future business ventures sound a lot like rumors about the Apple Tablet. Something is happening but no one is quite sure what.   There are existing digital publishers doing what Friedman is purportedly investigating. Belgrave House specializes in republishing Regency titles.   Rosetta has struck deals with authors like Terry Goodkind.   New publisher Quartet Press is looking for more legacy titles to bring out in digital.   In any event, if this is true it means that someone besides the rest of us thinks that romance + digital = win.

emoticon_surprisedPublishers Lunch had an interesting article (subscription link) regarding the rise of the author speaker’s bureau. One thing I’ve heard in denouncing comparisons between musicians and authors is that musicians can make money touring and authors cannot.   According to Publishing Perspectives, however, authors can command between $5,000 and $20,000 per event.

eyeExact Editions explores the idea of online book clubs. I’ve often wanted to host a book club chat monthly here at Dear Author but for one reason or another (usually lack of interest) we can never sustain one.   Exact Editions discusses the challenge of maintaining one on the internet due to the technological impediments.

But a more serious, and remediable problem with these book clubs is that it is very hard to share the reading experience through the web if the club is using a print book or even a traditional eBook. eBooks dont generally facilitate straightforward citations and bookmarks.

eyeThere’s a lit fic discussion taking place on the issue of dust jackets. Some publishers are imprinting a design straight on the cardboard cover and eschewing the dust jacket.   I always removed the dust jacket when I read a hardcover because it tends to get damaged in the reading but I admit to some affection for them. My preference, though, is the imprinted cardboard cover that has the same look as the dust jacket so that the jacket is optional.

emoticon_surprisedEven though romance is selling well at Borders, the economic situation is not rosy. Sales are down by a whopping 17.9% and losses are higher than expected.   Part of the reason (but definitely not the entire reason) that sales were off from last year is that music and DVD sales are declining dramatically as Borders decreases the multimedia section and increases the children and teen section.   Borders also acknowledged that its stock was too low something readers here have complained about time and again.

emoticon_smileNathan Bransford has a very neat article about how a book gets from author to the shelf.

Jane Litte is the founder of Dear Author, a lawyer, and a lover of pencil skirts. She self publishes NA and contemporaries (and publishes with Berkley and Montlake) and spends her downtime reading romances and writing about them. Her TBR pile is much larger than the one shown in the picture and not as pretty. You can reach Jane by email at jane @ dearauthor dot com


  1. DS
    Aug 26, 2009 @ 13:33:08

    DJs have not been around that long. I have some books from the late 19th, early 20th centuries that have glassine jackets, a sort of translucent paper that allows you to see the title and author’s name embossed on the book. There was no printing on the glassine itself. When it comes to modern books– early 20th century on, 75-80% of the value to collectors is in the jacket.

    Pictoral wraps– usually laminated to the boards– were popular for children’s classics and series like Trixie Belden, in the 50’s through 60’s. But the article you referenced looks like more like what would be called decorated wraps. I have a number of older books that I purchased because I liked the Art Nouveau decorations that were imprinted on the book– they were also lavishly illustrated. Now if that was to come back in style I might be tempted to collect hyper-moderns again in the dead tree version.

    I have thought for some time that ebooks might result in a resurgence of book collecting, because there would be fewer hard copies available if many people opted to read digitally.

  2. Jane
    Aug 26, 2009 @ 20:46:25

    @DS I wonder if the rise of the digital market will result in better products in terms of the physical container. Let’s face it. There is little special about the average hardcover today. I think that Scholastic did a great job in the packaging of the Potter books. Those are keepers for me but most hardcovers aren’t worth putting on my shelf as a collectible.

  3. Joy
    Aug 27, 2009 @ 06:45:57

    Borders would perhaps do better if they would stock books people want to buy. Lauren Dane’s newest is available online only – which means Borders annoyed me by not having it AND did not get my usual impluse buys of 4-5 other books. Guess I should take this over to the other blog….

    I switched to Borders over B&N a few years ago but we’ll see how much longer that lasts.

  4. Srsly...
    Aug 27, 2009 @ 08:17:49

    His name is “Nathan Bransford,” not “Bradford.”

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