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

Thursday Midday Links: Orbit to Publish Digital Shorts

Orbit, the publisher of books like Soulless and Changelessby Gail Carriger along with The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms by N.K. Jemisin, has just announced that it will digitally publish short fiction in the genres of science fiction and fantasy. There are not many publishers providing digital fiction in the SFF area other than Baen and Drollerie Press so it is good to see a new entrant into the market.


The American Conservative notes that Scott Ambrose O’Reilly has moved from Amazon’s music division to the Kindle division. O’Reilly is credited in this article as striking deals with music companies that have lead Amazon to begin to be competitive with Apple in the digital music business.


Get Digital Books at 40% off. I added this yesterday but it was late and I wanted to highlight it again. Over at, a reader pointed out a special that runs out on the 17th. Target is selling Sony eBookstore gift cards worth $25 for only $15. The poster suggests you print out the ad to take with you as the Target employees appear not to be fully aware of this deal. I’ll be driving around tomorrow availing myself of this great deal. via Mobile Read


E-Reader-Info claims that Kindle sells 66% of e ink device market which means they have moved about 3.3 million units.   Shipments of eink screens were about 5 million in 2009.    Via Teleread.


Robin asks if bad ideas aren’t worth debate in a community.

In a Romance reading community, where female sexuality, romantic love, and independence are so powerfully present, questions around what it means to be a woman in our time versus what it meant 50, 100, even 500 years ago, as well as debates over the virtues of marriage, children, sexual freedom, economic independence, and equal opportunities for men and women are not only relevant but are already underway – in the books themselves.


What, I ask you, do we gain as a community when these discussions can't or don't happen? And what do we lose by having them?


Marginal Revolution asks whether VATs aren’t just a money machine and notes that the US is the only country in the OECD that hasn’t adopted VAT.   VAT has not been applied to books in the past, but VAT is being applied to ebooks.   It creates a buying barrier for our friends internationally.


Lisa J. Murphy has created a tactile erotic book for the blind (and for those who like to touch their erotica, I guess).

Tactile Mind is half art object, half artisanal concept book. It contains explicit softcore images that are raised from its pages, along with Braille text and photos. The effect of the tactile, plastic “images” is a bit like that of an ancient Greek bas-relief. Or, somewhat less precisely, a smutty pop-up book.

This is one form of book that digital cannot replace.


Like the idea of an iPad but not enthused about the Apple censorship (no satire is allowed, not even Pulitzer Prize winning satire)  and it’s increasing desire to control your entire computer world?   Then you might like the WePad.   WePad will be launched in Germany this summer.   The WePad will have a “Linux-based OS, USB ports, webcam, and Wi-Fi.”   Via Slashdot.


I think I forgot to post this, but Harlequin has been welcomed back into the Mystery Writer’s Association.   Someone on twitter said that this was because Harlequin was not   going to include a referral to its subsidy press, Dell Arte, on its rejection letters. Profiting from a subsidy press is okay with these organizations but putting your brand on it is not, apparently.

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. Kalen Hughes
    Apr 15, 2010 @ 10:47:21

    Harlequin was welcomed back into RWA with the same understanding. Not sure what this means for DellArte’s business model . . .

  2. MaryK
    Apr 15, 2010 @ 12:17:49

    I’m planning to buy an iPod Touch soon. I don’t care about the Apple brand – what I want are the apps. If other brands had access to the same apps, I’d gladly comparison shop.

  3. Melissa
    Apr 15, 2010 @ 13:37:30

    I had no trouble finding the ereader gift cards at my local Target –there were plenty in stock and they also had the discount tag posted to show the $15 price. Loaded up!

    Now, if I can just get the Sony eBook customer service folks to explain why the publisher set price by Harper Collins is 5% more than the publisher set price on Amzn and B&N, I’ll be ready to go! ($8.39 instead of $7.99). The customer service there is already proving to be a nightmare.

  4. Heather S. Ingemar
    Apr 15, 2010 @ 14:18:24

    Echelon Press ( also publishes short fiction in ebook format, in a variety of genres including romance and SFF.

  5. Shiloh Walker
    Apr 15, 2010 @ 14:41:46

    Target is selling Sony eBookstore gift cards worth $25 for only $15. The poster suggests you print out the ad to take with you as the Target employees appear not to be fully aware of this deal.

    I hit my local target today and bought some… they scanned @ 15.

  6. StacieH4
    Apr 15, 2010 @ 18:36:48

    Thanks for the Sony ebook giftcard notice! I missed it in the Target ad this week. Picked up a few of them and they are already safely added to my Sony account. Yay, time to shop!

  7. Darlynne
    Apr 15, 2010 @ 18:38:15

    Now, if I can just get the Sony eBook customer service folks to explain why the publisher set price by Harper Collins is 5% more than the publisher set price on Amzn and B&N, I'll be ready to go!

    I’d love to know if you’re successful. This merry go round we’re on is making me hurl.

  8. Lynn
    Apr 15, 2010 @ 19:49:24

    I went to Sony’s ebook site, and opened a new account, but had to download and install their Reader software first in order to buy their books. Did that. Went back to Sony’s site and couldn’t use my account. Called customer service and they said I HAD to use the Reader’s built in browser to buy and download books. He also said I wouldn’t have access to the books I bought. I couldn’t get him to explain that and didn’t want to waste money on books at that point.

    Sure, I was going to put some Sony epubs on my Nook as well as read them using the Sony Reader software on my laptop.

    I am so glad when I installed the Reader software I didn’t check the box that gave me the option to transfer all my existing epub books to the Sony Reader library. Not sure if it would have eaten them or not.

    I canceled my account and removed the software off my laptop.

  9. Melissa
    Apr 15, 2010 @ 20:34:13


    This thread at B&N has excellent instructions for using the Sony ebook store, then sideloading to a Nook (see reply #8 in thread).

    The instructions actually discuss how to pull the books into Adobe Digital Editions, so could be useful to others.

    I just ran a trial and was able to purchase, decrypt and transfer via Calibre to my Nook, no problemo.

  10. Kathleen Dienne
    Apr 16, 2010 @ 08:56:13

    Harlequin is only one part of a ginormous corporate conglomerate, and practically the only part that makes actual money. I was disgusted but not shocked when they tried to climb onto the sucker gravy train.

    The original concept was as offensive as all get out. Driving suckers to that site with faint promises of being “discovered” if sales were high enough was sickening. Using the rejection letters to drive that traffic was enough to prevent me from submitting my work to any part of HQ until the matter was resolved.

    But there’s not even a whiff of a connection from either the DA side or the HQ side anymore. To me the current situation is like a company who bottles soda has a division that sells dog food.

    I might be splitting hairs, but all I care about is protecting writers and not giving them false hope. If someone wants to stop riding the submission carousel and just hold a bound book of their own devising, I see nothing wrong with that.

  11. Lynn
    Apr 16, 2010 @ 15:08:57

    @Melissa: Thank you.

  12. Exploring Tactile Erotica - GalleyCat
    Apr 23, 2010 @ 13:05:19

    […] how she created these images, a fascinating experiment for readers and publishers. Thanks to Dear Author for the […]

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