Dec 18 2009
Jason Pinter wonders whether being online and so accessible removes the mystique of an author and thereby reduces one’s ability to sell books.
More authors are getting into the casual gaming platform. Orchid Games released Heartwild Solitaire Classic and recruited a few authors to write short stories that players are allowed to read after winning a game of solitaire. The game and the stories are free. Sherry Thomas has allowed us to host her free story here. Right click to save the RTF on your computer or click the link to read the story in a browser.
Courtney Milan has a great idea on how to resolve the business between RWA and Harlequin over Harlequin’s partnership with Author Solutions. It reads like a win win to me. Milan’s solution involves requiring all the Harlequin lines to be separate publishers and requiring Harlequin not refer any authors solicited from the conference to Dell Arte Press.
October was a good month for book sales. Nearly every category saw a positive increase. The increase in adult hardcover is probably attributable to Dan Brown’s The Lost Symbol.
- Adult paperback increased 37.5% to $130.4 million.
- Children’s/YA hardcover fell 0.5% to $87.9 million.
- Children’s/YA paperback increased 20.2% to $52.7 million.
- Adult hardcover rose 6.3% to $259.9 million.
- Adult mass market was down 1.8% to $61.2 million.
- Audiobooks dropped 1.8% to $19.7 million.
- Ebooks were up 254% to $18.5 miillon.
Carolyn Reidy, CEO of Simon & Schuster blames a soft market on the dismal S&S sales year:
Reidy noted that the bookselling marketplace "has been truly lackluster, and year-on-year sales at most of our major customers have declined significantly. Books from many of our continuing authors, as well as our higher-margin backlist, are selling at levels well below their peak." And although S&S had solid gains in its conservative and teen markets and strong performances in the U.K. and Canada, "the lower sales volume attributable to the soft marketplace was impossible for us to overcome."
I have a feeling the year end balance sheet at Simon & Schuster is grim.