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

Sunday Midday News: Publisher Behaving Badly

The Romance Reviews has a great big giveaway going on until August 31, 2010.   Check them out.

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Barnes and Noble is advertising free digital books.   Except these are books that are in the public domain so its a pretty lame promotion, if you ask me.   I did a post a couple of weeks ago about where to get public domain books which include   Project Gutenberg,  MobileRead, and  Feedbooks, Amazon and Sony.   Commenters pointed out manybooks.net.   The reality is that BN does have some good freebies to promote such as Karen Marie Moning’s DarkFever and Pride and Prejudice and Zombies by Steve Hockensmith.

Don’t forget to check out Books on the Knob for a list of more promotional freebies.

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Books on Board has a list of all the RITA nominees on one page.   I really appreciate this.   I use the RITA nominees to find new category books (not so much for the mass markets).

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Borders ebooksBorders has opened up its ebook store.   It sells ePubs encrypted with the Adobe DRM.   Last week it was giving away a few books but that promotion appears to have ended. In perusing the store, I noticed that if Borders could discount a book, the book was generally at least 20% off.   I found one really good deal and a worthwhile freebie:

Because Borders is missing a lot of content, it isn’t a replacement for your main shopping site, but it would be worthwhile to check out from time to time to see if you are getting the best deal for your Harlequin, Kensington and Random House purchases.

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Hearts’s iPad Magazine Apps will offer more functionality than just allowing a reader to peruse the magazine contents.    The Oprah magazine will have a built in ebook reader and will allow readers to purchase Oprah recommended books and read them through the “O” magazine.

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Michael Wolff writes for Newswer that it is a wasteland at the Times and SundayTimes in London behind the newly institute paywalls.

A Murdoch and Fleet Street veteran with whom I've been corresponding about the paywall reported to me on his recent conversation with an A-list entertainment publicist: "What was really interesting to me was that this person volunteered a blinding realization. "Why would I get any of my clients to talk to the  Times or the  Sunday Times if they are behind a paywall? Who can see it? I can’t even share a link and they aren’t on search. It's as though their writers don’t exist anymore.'"

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Paul Biba writes that there is a strong rumor that Apple and Amazon are going to employ individuals who will pursue ebook rights from authors whose rights have reverted or whose digital rights have never been sold.   This will be interesting.

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I thought this post at All About Romance by author Lisa Kleypas was quite interesting.   She said that she hoped her next books would be paperback or trade paperback at least.   It sounds like the publisher is pushing for hardcover.

Because this is a Christmas story, it’s going to be a shorter book in a hardcover format (I think price is 16.00)–this length and format seems to be what many readers prefer for a holiday read. But every book in the series can be read on its own, and the following three titles will all be full-length (which to me is much easier to write than a shorter length!) I would love for them to be released in paperback or possibly trade, but no decisions have been made yet.

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Speaking of libraries:

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Last, but not least, is a news bit about Lazy Day Publishing.   LDP came to my attention via a notice in my inbox.   As new epublishers spring up, I try to check them out.   This one, however, lacked any concrete information on who was backing the publishing house.   I put the email aside and figured I would check   back upon the release of their books.

This weekend I received an email that LDP was upset about the comments on Absolute Write Forum.   AWF, like all forums, has good information and bad information but there is no doubt it is a seriously valuable tool for aspiring and published writers a like.   AWF, for example, had posters up to two years ago reporting non payment by Dorchester. The purpose of AWF is to provide a safe haven for writers to share ideas about craft but also advice about the business side of publishing.   One of its most oft visited areas is the Bewares section.

Lazy Day Publishing starts its own thread on AW and the commenters were initially cordial but eventually there were the “who the f are you?” questions because, well, who are these people and what do they know about publishing?      Lazy Day took exception to this thread and wrote a blog screed which they deleted after a couple of days.   Why delete Lazy Day?   Have you not heard of Google cache? or um, screencaps? (I took the screencaps because I KNEW that this would be deleted).

took the higher road on this forum.  This was  not an easy thing to do.   How these cranky, arrogant and rude authors suddenly became the voice of the forum, I'm  notsure.   I guess the better question would be how they became so  negative in the first place?   Maybe it's all the rejection letters they have received in their lifetime.    :)

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These few authors who fuel the negativity on this site are doomed to an unhappy existence of barely making it as a writer.   I feel sorry for them.   I feel sorry that they have forgotten about the art of storytelling.   They have lost the dream of sharing their writing with others.   They have created this microcosm of hostility.   An existence I wouldn't wish on anyone.

Wow, does this sound familiar or what?

In reading over their website, there are wrong word choices and bad grammar usage.   There is no question that you will see bad grammar on our site all the time, but we are an unedited blog site, not a site for a publishing house.

Lazy Day Pub 2

So what do I take away from Lazy Day Pub?   They have short fuses, will try to embarrass you on their blog if you cross them, and they lack a copy editor for the Frequently Asked Questions.

Jane Litte is the founder of Dear Author, a lawyer, and a lover of pencil skirts. She 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

22 Comments

  1. Tweets that mention Sunday Midday News: Publisher Behaving Badly | Dear Author -- Topsy.com
    Jul 18, 2010 @ 14:17:42

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  2. Mireya
    Jul 18, 2010 @ 14:27:49

    I just went to take a look at that new epub. As par the course, no information whatsoever on who are the people behind it. Anyone and their uncle can open an epub and that is the truth. Everyone online that has been on for more than 2 years knows this for a fact. I guess we’ll have to wait and see who is behind the enterprise and how it will fare in the LONG term … in the short term we all know how we all are one great, big, happy family … all sarcasm intended…

  3. Vi
    Jul 18, 2010 @ 14:37:51

    Amazon also has Darkfever for free for Kindle/ Kindle app.

  4. Charlotte Stein
    Jul 18, 2010 @ 14:44:48

    I found the attitude all over the LazyDay site a little unsettling- a lot of grand promises and “trust us” sorts of stuff, that felt very familiar.

    And lo, a few days later- this. If you can’t engage with authors professionally on a writer’s forum, why would any author assume you’re going to be professional at any other level?

    I do wonder if they’re going for a publicity grab with this, but I also wonder if said publicity is going to get them any authors for their stable. I know I won’t be submitting.

  5. Joanne
    Jul 18, 2010 @ 14:45:00

    I’ve always liked the Old Spice guy but now that he is promoting libraries AND said I’m pretty I may buy the product.

    Re: Lazy Day Publishing. You can be sure they haven’t looked at epubs that are doing things right. A shame really, there’s room for almost everyone but there’s no room for any more stupid publishers.

  6. Shiloh Walker
    Jul 18, 2010 @ 15:46:11

    This is probably small of me, but when a new epublisher acts like an ass that early on? Doesn’t bother me a bit because for authors who know how to research? Then they know who to steer clear of.

    If they can’t act with more professionalism than that… from the get-go, then it’s not a place I’d even considering looking at, if I was in the mood to look.

  7. becca
    Jul 18, 2010 @ 17:03:07

    Amazon (and a lot of other places) have a Karen Marie Moning book (FeverDreams? something like that) for free. If you get it, there’s a list of about half a dozen other urban fantasies being offered for free.

    I’d get it, but I’ve heard that the book doesn’t really have an ending, but rather the hook for the next book. Somehow, that always strikes me as cheating.

  8. becca
    Jul 18, 2010 @ 17:17:58

    oops: the KMM book that’s free is DarkFever.

  9. Vi
    Jul 18, 2010 @ 17:49:18

    Becca, all of the books in the Fever series end in cliffhangers. That’s why I refuse to read the series until the fourt and final book is released in January, 2011. I could not imagine the torture it must have been to wait a year/ year and a half for each book in the series.

  10. MaryK
    Jul 18, 2010 @ 17:52:55

    I love KindlePC and the Kindle app. I use them for the freebies, and they’re like magic. I’m inching down the slope toward Kindle ownership even though I hate DRM.

  11. TKF
    Jul 18, 2010 @ 18:13:38

    I love Kindle PC because it lets me sample books without buying them, just like I’m browsing in a book store. I downloaded 5 UF samples last weekend (two were recommenced in a comment on this blog and the others were “people who bought this” recs). Three of them were not my cuppa and one is still waiting to be tried, but I’m a new Nalini Singh convert!!! OMG Angel’s Blood was good.

  12. Angela James
    Jul 18, 2010 @ 18:18:32

    @TKF: Love love love Nalini. I just reread all of her books 2 weeks ago (except the categories). Am on UF re-reading binge. Also re-read Ilona Andrews and have now moved on to Patricia Briggs.

    As for Kindle samples, my iPhone app is loaded with them. I don’t buy a book from new-to-me author w/out reading a sample now. And sometimes, when I’m not actively in the middle of the book and I need bedtime reading (because I always read before going to sleep) I’ll read some of the samples instead of starting a whole new book. Although that has backfired on me, as there have been times I’ve read the samples and then bought the book and kept reading…well past midnight.

  13. Brian
    Jul 18, 2010 @ 18:34:22

    While the B&N promo might seem lame to some folks their classics are all edited for errors and proofread and have notes, introductions, footnotes etc. so they aren’t your run of the mill PG rehashes.

  14. BonnieL
    Jul 18, 2010 @ 21:08:04

    @becca: I did get it, and you’re right, it didn’t have an ending.

    The book wasn’t enough for me to buy more. But, it was free, so….

  15. MikiS
    Jul 19, 2010 @ 00:51:27

    The reality is that BN does have some good freebies to promote such as Karen Marie Moning's DarkFever and Pride and Prejudice and Zombies by Steve Hockensmith.

    The Zombies “freebie” is really just a sample (Chapter 1). B&N is bad for that, so be sure to read the description in the link.

  16. Jane
    Jul 19, 2010 @ 06:35:54

    @MikiS Oh, thank you for pointing that out. What the heck? Promoting a chapter as a freebie?

  17. Sheryl Nantus
    Jul 19, 2010 @ 08:14:11

    @Brian: True – and they’re formatting properly for the Nook, so if you don’t want to bother with getting them for free from elsewhere, sideboarding them onto the Nook and *then* having to deal with bad formatting…

    *shrugs*

    I grabbed them. I’ll take anything for free. And B&N has done a GREAT job of giving away free books and promoting the Nook.

    imo, of course.

  18. Carolyn Jewel
    Jul 19, 2010 @ 10:58:19

    Alas, the Books On Board list of RITA finalists is incomplete. Although they have my historical RITA finalist, Scandal, they don’t have my paranormal finalist, My Forbidden Desire.

    I searched their database and they don’t seem to have any of my books for Grand Central, which is probably why it’s not listed.

    I’m sure there are other finalists missing, too.

  19. Suze
    Jul 19, 2010 @ 13:50:59

    @Carolyn Jewel:

    I find BooksOnBoard often has broken links, so that you can search for a book by author or title, and it won’t appear, even though you bought it from there and it’s on your bookshelf. If you have the time and patience, browse the books as a list by author. It usually shows up there, and usually there’s been a glitch with the metadata. Although it also can be due to the agency pricing change.

    In any case, if it’s a Rita, it should be grouped with the Ritas.

  20. DS
    Jul 19, 2010 @ 15:08:21

    @Jane: Happened on Amazon once with James Patterson’s publisher putting up a chapter as a free book. It caused a bit of a ruckus in the reviews section and was quickly relabeled.

  21. Brian
    Jul 19, 2010 @ 18:14:18

    @Carolyn Jewel: Books On Board doesn’t have your books (or anything else from Hachette (which Grand Central is part of) because of the Agency Pricing deal. Hachette hasn’t worked out contracts with some of the various booksellers/distributors yet (even though it’s been going on since April). I’m guessing they’re only listing books that they can sell. Diesel, CyberRead and Fictionwise don’t have your book either unfortunately.

    Distro’s have to work out individual special agreements for every single retailer they sell to in order for that seller to be able to sell a given pubs books now (this only applies to books from the Agency 5 cartel).

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