Wednesday News: Loose ID, Amazon Australia, new books, and roaming cats
Loose ID is shutting down – Claiming that the move does not signal “financial distress,” digital publisher Loose ID is nonetheless closing its doors as of May 7, 2018. They are no longer accepting submissions. Loose ID has been publishing erotic fiction for 13 years, practically a lifetime in digital publishing terms. They received RWA recognition in 2007 and released more than 3,000 titles. It’s difficult to imagine a drama-free closure, but we will see.
We want to assure you, our customers and friends, that authors and staff are being paid, purchases will be honored, and we will remain in constant communication throughout the closing process. We will do our best to monitor social media during this busy time, but if you have questions, email through our firstname.lastname@example.org email will be the best channel. We will be compiling questions from that account to repost for everyone’s convenience. – Facebook
Amazon launches in Australia with ‘millions’ of products, hopes to win consumers’ trust – While Amazon is not the first e-commerce or big box giant to take on the Australian market, the company claims its debut was its biggest international opening, with 23 “categories” of products. Australia has a strong book culture, and some writers worry that international commerce is diluting that culture, especially on the writing side. Australians buy a lot of books. At the same time, market competition is expected to reduce prices for some products. Perhaps some of our Australian readers (Kaetrin?) can comment on what they see as the implications of Amazon’s launch for book prices, which have historically been quite expensive, and their own book-buying habits.
But customers will have to wait until mid-next year to sign up to its popular Prime subscription service, which gives members free express shipping. Amazon said its two-hour delivery “Prime Now” service would not be available until some time after that.
Local shoppers have previously been able to shop on Amazon’s US website, but only limited items can be shipped to Australia.
Amazon’s impending arrival has weighed on the share prices of Australia’s listed retailers over the past year. While analysts do not expect Amazon to capture significant market share at first, they say incumbent retailers’ will have to sacrifice earnings and cut prices to remain competitive. – Sydney Morning Herald
10 Compelling Novels by Comic Book Writers – The myriad ways in which comic books are expanding their cultural and literary reach are impressive. It’s not just that writers from the industry are crossing over; formats are diversifying, as well. While this list technically qualifies as a “best of” holiday book-buying recommendation, it also highlights the artificiality of strict generic boundaries.
The barrier separating comics and prose has long been a superficial divide, with acclaimed talents like Neil Gaiman and Joe Hill dashing between the mediums so nimbly that either “team” would claim them as their own. Some novelists, like Marjorie Liu and Duane Swierczynski, cross into comics and hardly look back. Others, like recent Marvel recruits Ta-Nehisi Coates and Roxane Gay, remain frequent prose powerhouses. A few long-time comic writers, like Warren Ellis and Mike Carey, have even found prose success over a decade into their funny-book careers. – Paste Magazine
Book-loving tabby makes librarians crabby – Despite “grounding” their cat, a Minnesota couple has been unable to keep him from sneaking into the Macalester College library. Max, an adorable orange tabby with white feet, just wants some time in the stacks. But librarians are not so enthusiastic, and the crisis is escalating. Check out the article for the adorable battle over Max’s library-loving ways. He even has his own Instagram account. – Star Tribune