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


Thursday Midday Links:  For $2 you can send a note and a cup of joe to a soldier

Thursday Midday Links: For $2 you can send a note...

IASPR logo
The International Association for the Study of Popular Romance has posted the schedule for its Second Annual Conference on Popular Romance Studies. This year, the conference is in Brussels, Belgium, generously supported by RWA and two Belgian funding sources, KVAB and FWO. The conference is 5-7 August, 2010.

The schedule is up. And summaries of all the papers and the authors’ biographies are up, too. There are three keynotes: Pam Regis, guided by the question, "What does a critic owe the romance?", Celestino Deleyto discussing the middle of romantic comedy films, and Lynne Pearce, discussing repetition in romance. There are, of course, many presentations on romance novels, but we will also be discussing romcom films, international popular romance, popular romance in translation, historical popular romance, and, of course, vampires.

Registration is open. And is a low 50 Euros, which is a bargain compared with RWA’s fees for the conference (unfortunately, the previous week)! We’d love to see as many romance lovers there as can make it! If you’ve wondered about IASPR and happen to be in the neighborhood, come and join us and spend a weekend happily immersed in popular romance studies.

Heads-up: next year’s conference is in New York City, 26-28 June, 2011, the three days before RWA’s NYC conference.


Yesterday CEO Carolyn Reidy of Simon & Schuster fired the 13 year publisher, David Rosenthal and replaced him with Jonathan Karp. Karp was most recently a publisher for Twelve imprint at Grand Central and before that was the publisher at Random House.
Via Deadline and Media Decoder


Kno Press Pics from Engadget

A company called Kno has developed a ginormous tablet device for college students. Started by Osman Rashid who founded Chegg, a company that rents textbooks to students, Kno aims to provide a replacement for textbooks and computer in one device. It has two 14 inch scfreens and weighs about 5.5 pounds. It’s built on a Linux OS and supports Flash (so students can watch Hulu?). The price will be something under $1,000.

Mr. Rashid said the company had deals with several large textbook publishers, including Pearson, McGraw Hill Education, Cengage Learning and Wiley, to make their texts available on the Kno.

Bits Blog, NYTimes


Via author Susan Mallery is a link where you can donate $2.00 to bring a cup of coffee to a soldier. For $60, you can support 30 soldiers. With each cup, you can leave a note and the coffee with the note will be delivered for you.

Dear Author

Thursday Morning News Links: ePub May Be Winning the Format War

emoticon_smileOne of the barriers of entry for ebook reading is the myriad of formats but the headache might be easing for readers. Sony has announced it will drop its own proprietary ebook format, BBeB (also known as LRF), and sell ONLY epub format. I think it makes sense for the consumer to either buy epub or be converting their books using Calibre into epub.

Adobe sent MobileRead a nice list of devices that support ePub.

In other Sony news, it has a partnership with Overdrive to start offering library digital downloads compatible with the Sony reader. This means that Sony will offer the epub format to library patrons. I have asked whether this Sony/Overdrive relationship will mean that Harlequin will start offering epub as well.

Bookseller also confidently reports that Sony will be offering a wireless device at the end of the year. Sony has announced a press conference for the 25th of August. I’m getting a little excited about this.

Edited to add: Forgot to mention that ScrollMotion is bringing in app purchase to the iPhone. It will be the first iPhone book app to take advantage of this, as far as I know. Scroll Motion has overpriced its individual apps so it will be interesting to see what the pricing is for the books via in app purchase.

emoticon_smileThe Book Oven talks about its new open platform for authors who want to publish on their own. Authors can upload content and other folks can come along and proof and edit the work.

emoticon_surprisedSpeaking of self publishing, Stephen Covey has decided to forego an established publisher and will self publish an entire line of short books under the name “Insight Series.” Covey went with Rosetta Books. It sounds like there will be print versions as well, but who the retailers will be I’ve yet to read.

emoticon_tongueA district court looking at RealNetworks DVD copying software ruled that it was unlawful under the DMCA but leaves open the issue of whether consumers can make copies regardless of the DMCA for their own personal use. Via Gizmodo.

emoticon_smileIASPR, a scholarly journal and association devoted to the genre, has a seminar underway in Brisbane Australia. Here’s some local coverage.

eyeTalking Alot Blog argues that commentary on the web can inform publishers about its readership and that part of analyzing data is separating dross from the wheat. In other words, yes, there is some mean, stupid comments out there but there are also important comments.

emoticon_smileThe meme out of the 2009 BEA was that it was a dying or dead trade show. People are already trying to see how it can be saved. Penguin floated the idea of having consumers attend but only at off site locations.

While some smaller publishers favor selling books to consumers on the convention floor, no major houses (and no booksellers) PW spoke with support the idea, and Fensterman has vetoed the notion. "The reading public won’t be coming into the [Javits] tent anytime soon," he said.