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Thursday News: The Author run publishing houses; eBook silos

Another author, Teresa Medeiros, announced the formation of her publishing house, Amber House.  She is apparently re issuing backlist titles and publishing new front list work including a non fiction work.  Medeiros “publishing house” isn’t acquiring new books and there is no word as to whether Tule is either.

Gemma Halliday, Inc. is a publishing house owned and operated by the author Gemma Halliday.  Sibel Hodge announced that she had just “signed” with GHI a few days ago.  There is no link for GHI itself.

I’m not sure whether these are author coops or actual publishing houses. I do think it is interesting that these houses, if they are publishing houses, aren’t subject to the same scrutiny given to larger publishing firms.  And I’m not sure what the new author gets out of it? If it is primarily for covers, editing and distribution then isn’t it just an Author Services firm?

As a reader, are you more interested in a Gemma Halliday branded book or one by Jane Porter?  It’s an interesting concept. I suspect we’ll see an increase in a number of author “publishing houses”.

The author goes on to state that the Post has the best API of any newspaper but acknowledges that the API wasn’t part of the deal. But distribution ideas make sense or at least better sense than other musings which basically amount up to Bezos wanting a propaganda machine. Co.Labs ? code + community

Wednesday  Midday Links:  Topless Female Duelists

Wednesday Midday Links: Topless Female Duelists

HarperCollins total year-end results are unclear given that parent company news Corp. did not break out  the division in the year-end report. However, the children’s division improved and e-book sales accounted for approximately 12% of all business in the US last year.  Source: PW

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Author Dorothea Benton Frank gave an interview to the Columbus Dispatch which surely sounded better in her head than it did when it was printed out. She indicates her preference for well groomed fans to match her own attractive appearance.

“This is the honest-to-God truth: My readers are good-looking,” she said. “They’re not all beauty queens, but they’re cute as a bug, well-groomed and nice. You wouldn’t mind being related to them.”

She paused, then added: “I went to a Stephen King book-signing once, and his fans . . . I had to sleep with the lights on.”

Source: Columbus Dispatch

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File this one under why the Internet is so great. Someone found a picture of two topless Victorian women dueling. The 1892 duel was fought by Princess Pauline Metternich and the Countess Kielmannsegg in Liechtenstein and was overseen by Baroness Lubinska who had medical training. The duel was fought topless for medical reasons rather than titillation. The reason for the duel? It wasn’t over a man. Read the piece at The Mary Sue to found out more.

I thought Sherry Thomas would be the perfect author to incorporate this into her books.

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Some pay information for those who work in publishing has recently been published.   Executives are earning a very nice salary.  John Makinson, Chairman of Penguin reportedly pulls in $2,213,670 and Donna Hayes of Harlequin has a total package worth $1,668,486.  The top publishing executive appears to be Will Pesce, CEO of John Wiley, whose total package is over $3 million.

Jeff Bezos takes home an annual salary of $81,840 and no stock awards although the stock he does own places his fortune around $1.7 billion.

Source: PW

The editors, however, are making substantially less.

Using the anonymous job site Glassdoor, we found that the average salary for an editor in the New York area is $53,500 a year. This includes book editors and magazine and newspaper editors. The site breaks out figures from specific companies.

Source: GalleyCat

Maybe the editors are simply not mean enough.  According to a new study written up in the Wall Street Journal, researchers found that meaner people earned more.

The researchers examined “agreeableness” using self-reported survey data and found that men who measured below average on agreeableness earned about 18% more—or $9,772 more annually in their sample—than nicer guys. Ruder women, meanwhile, earned about 5% or $1,828 more than their agreeable counterparts.

Source: Wall Street Journal

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Break out the DRM cracking tools because Microsoft has officially killed MS Lit.  The app will no longer be available for download after August 30, 2012, and all stores carrying LIT books will need to pull the formats on November 8, 2011.

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A Mississippi judge ruled  the statute of limitations had run on Ablene Cooper’s suit against Kathryn Stockett.  Cooper sued Stockett under various tort theories.  The preliminary pleadings showed that Stockett had given the book to Cooper in January 2009 but the lawsuit was not filed until February 2011.  Mississippi has a one year statue of limitations for these types of claims.  A statute of limitations is a time period set by the state (via a bill) during which people can bring civil claims (also criminal suits).

Cooper argued that the statute of limitations should begin when she read the book and thus was aware of the defamation and slander rather than the date she was given the book.

The decision didn’t rest upon the merits of Cooper’s suit, but rather a procedural issue.  It’s hard to swallow Stockett’s claim that Aibileen Clark was not based on her brother’s black maid named “Ablene Cooper.”

I liked The Help quite a bit but let’s face it, the whole subtext of it is this white girl saving these poor black maids.  Stockett’s refusal to acknowledge Cooper’s distress has to be galling.  Source: Charlotte Observer