Friday, November 30, 2007

Xlibris Early Christmas Present: 50% Off All Book Publishing Services



Xlibris Early Christmas Present: 50% Off All Book Publishing Services. Do you believe that? There has to be some kind of catch to an offer that big. Book publishing at half their regular price, that means just about $200 or so. Should ask if service will be the same or if that will be cut in half too.

It only lasts for 7 days though so maybe they're hoping people will just call interested in the offer but be too late to actually claim it? Plus they're supposedly giving free books? Aw come on where's the fine print?

Thursday, November 29, 2007

New York Times' 10 Best Books Of 2007

New York Times' 10 Best Books Of 2007. Here's NYT's selection of best books for 2007 in Fiction and Non fiction. Click on the book's title and get taken to NYT's review of that book.


Fiction

MAN GONE DOWN
By Michael Thomas. Black Cat/Grove/Atlantic, paper, $14.

OUT STEALING HORSES
By Per Petterson. Translated by Anne Born. Graywolf Press, $22.

THE SAVAGE DETECTIVES
By Roberto BolaƱo. Translated by Natasha Wimmer. Farrar, Straus & Giroux, $27.

THEN WE CAME TO THE END
By Joshua Ferris. Little, Brown & Company, $23.99.

TREE OF SMOKE
By Denis Johnson. Farrar, Straus & Giroux, $27.


Nonfiction

IMPERIAL LIFE IN THE EMERALD CITY: Inside Iraq's Green Zone.
By Rajiv Chandrasekaran. Alfred A. Knopf, $25.95; Vintage, paper, $14.95.

LITTLE HEATHENS: Hard Times and High Spirits on an Iowa Farm During the Great Depression.
By Mildred Armstrong Kalish. Bantam Books, $22.

THE NINE: Inside the Secret World of the Supreme Court.
By Jeffrey Toobin. Doubleday, $27.95.

THE ORDEAL OF ELIZABETH MARSH: A Woman in World History.
By Linda Colley. Pantheon Books, $27.50.

THE REST IS NOISE: Listening to the Twentieth Century.
By Alex Ross. Farrar, Straus & Giroux, $30.


According to the article, this list will run in the Dec. 9 print edition of the Book Review.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Authorhouse Publishing Guide in HTML

I requested a publishing guide from Authorhouse. Expecting to get a large PDF file like I usually get from other self publishing companies, it was a welcome surprise that I got theirs in HTML. It's like a separate part of their website. And believe me the Authorhouse website annoys me to no end as it is - no prices and other important details.

But here's the HTML publishing guide from Authorhouse I'm talking about. Appreciate for yourself.

ALL THE SUPPORT YOU WANT

With AuthorHouse, you’re in control of the publishing process, plus you have on-going, personal support when you need it. Through our AuthorCentric publishing process, you:

  • Drive the design and layout of the book
  • Choose the promotional services that best fit your plans
  • Set the sale price and royalty amount for your book
  • Retain the rights to your work, so you profit from selling foreign or movie rights

We simply provide the services, advice and expertise you need to reach your goals. That means, with AuthorHouse, you get the book you want to market much faster and have the potential to earn a greater amount on each book sold.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Xulon Press Will Increase Prices On Dec. 1


I received an email today from Xulon Press announcing that they're increasing their prices on Dec. 1, also encouraging me to publish my book now before their prices go up.

The email itself was nicely worded, explaining that they had to increase prices after 7 years now. There is also the deal of being able to take $650 OFF the price of their "Best-seller Program."

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Amazon Launches Paperback Of The Future?




Jeffrey Bezos has been know to be the visionary who set up the multi-billion dollar retailer Amazon.com - he does it yet again with Kindle in the hopes the ebook reader will do for books what the iPod did for music.

In this review by The Guardian's Danny Bradbury, he quoted Jeff Bezos, "we knew we would never out-book the book," he explained. "We would have to take the technology and do things the book could never do."

Kindle has 30 hours of battery life, 2-hour recharge time, it lets users instantly receive newspapers and magazines subscribed to via Amazon. Making more than 90,000 books, blogs, magazines and newspapers available to any reader anywhere in the world - at a fee of course. But will this ebook reader device make it to mass markets? His article mentions many possible flaws to the device.

Other publishers worry that the whole ebook concept is flawed. Like many, HarperCollins is currently in the throes of digitising its content. "We're partly digitising because we are saying that we're not as interested in the book as a content delivery mechanism," says group digital publisher Clive Malcher. "We want to start with the content and deliver it in the most appropriate medium."

In a letter from Jeff Bezos posted on the homepage of Amazon.com, it took them more than 3 years to develop it. Kindle is wireless, patterned after the cell phone technology without the bills, the software and contracts. The screen is nothing like a computer, it's said to be on electronic paper and weighs only 10.3 ounces (less than a paperback), with the content of 200 books.

Will their analogy to music really work? I'm not sure. I still want to hold a book when I read and flip pages, and even smell the paper. It might be worth considering though now that everyone's going green - environmentalists will love this product.

I'm not sure ebooks will fly as well. They have been around for awhile but they haven't really stood out as a replacement for the real tangible book. And I doubt they ever will. For some reason, being published in print is just not the same with being published online

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

AuthorHouse Launches 2 New Services For Self Published Authors



Just when I thought Xlibris had the upper hand with all their promotions going on, not to be outdone is Authorhouse who just purchased iUniverse I heard recently launched two new marketing services products for their self published authors.

Book Buyer’s Preview that allows book buyers, librarians and researchers across the globe to read a selection from the first chapter of your book. When book buyers access their ordering database, the preview will appear with your book’s ordering information to aid buyers in making a purchasing decision. This will be made available to trade databases including in Ingram Book Group and Baker & Taylor, the two largest book distributors in the world as well as post a preview of your book on the Barnes & Noble site BN.com as well as Buy.com

Media Interview Connection that puts you, your book and your credentials in front of 75,000 journalists across the country. This sounds pretty much like a press release I think, only that they arrive in the form of alerts.

These all sound really nice. But I wonder how I go about getting them. I was on their site all day today trying to figure it out. What I understand is I have to pay for them, but I can't see anywhere how much they cost. They have got to make their website a lot friendlier. I'm wondering are these part of their publishing package now? Or are they add-ons? My goodness if they don't state the price though, makes me think they might be pretty darn expensive.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Xlibris Publishing Feature: Take A Look Inside Their Books



Xlibris just launched a new feature. I didn't notice it at first because it's at the bottom of their home page. But it's pretty cool. What it shows is the inside of some of their books.

If you can't find the link, try clicking here. This is a link to one of their samples - A Star For Santa. What's cool about it is that you actually see the pages flip. You see how the book is laid out, the interior book design and not just the cover (which we see everywhere anyway).

Xlibris is a self publishing company so I'd have to pay for their services, it's not a bad idea that they show me what the product would probably look like. Wonder if they can add this feature to their bookstore. That would be just cool if book shoppers could get a glimpse of what's inside the book, like a teaser.

Friday, November 16, 2007

November Publishing Promotion: iUniverse's biggest discount for 2007



While Xlibris is taking on the holiday Christmas theme, iUniverse on the other hand, has a Thanksgiving motif going on

Promotion Description: Code:
Save $200 off the regular price of a Premier Pro Publishing Package.
(Reg. $1,299) Now only $1,099!
NOV200
Save $150 off the regular price of a Premier Publishing Package.
(Reg. $899) Now only $749!
NOV150
Save $100 off the regular price of a Select Publishing Package.
(Reg. $599) Now only $499!
NOV100
Save $50 off the regular price of a Poetry Publishing Package.
(Reg. $799) Now only $749!
NOV50

iUniverse website says savings with all the trimmings by entering the corresponding promotional code when you purchase your Premier Pro, Premier, Select or Poetry Publishing Package (see codes above).


The point is I guess for you to purchase your publishing package before Dec. 1, and save as much as $200—apparently this is the biggest package discount iUniverse has offered in 2007. If your book is not quite ready to publish, then you don't have to miss out on the savings. You can still purchase your package today and submit your manuscript later according to them. Sounds like give me your money now, your manuscript can wait.

November Publishing Promotion: Xlibris has 3 of them!



Xlibris self publishing company just uploaded a new offer on their website which says that they're making sure your Christmas wish list comes true this November. Choose from three great deals and make all your yuletide dreams come true.



Give the perfect Christmas gift to that special someone this year.
Complete with a FREE Holiday Gift Certificate with 50 free holiday cards to whomever you choose.

That's quite a lot of offers don't you think?
  • So you can either publish 2 books for the price of 1 - which is cool if you've got 2 book but not necessarily useful if you've only got 1
  • You can get dollar discounts, which I guess would be what they would offer people with just 1 book
  • Upgrade? What is that? So you get 1 package with super-sized french fries? Maybe better services from that particular publishing package perhaps?
Guess I'll just have to call to find out. Getting confused

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

8th Harry Potter Book - Coming Soon?

Harry Potter enthusiasts, children and adults alike are being intrigued by a new website acting like a teaser for something in relation to the Harry Potter series, with his dad - Jame Potter seeming to take the lead role this time. The title says James Potter and The Hall of Elders' Crossing. Sounds very Harry Potterish to me.



A spokesman for Warner Bros, the company that brought Harry Potter to the big screen and was believed to be behind the website, did not confirm or deny its involvement in the “secret test marketing” when contacted by NEWS.com.au.

You'll need passwords to read snippets of an online book that doesn't really reveal anything about the website or what it is trying to promote. Mostly magic stuff similar to what Harry Potter used to learn in Hogwarts as well as concepts in the world of wizards. There is certainly some connection as copyright information is stated on the website. Many have commented that it could just be a hoax. But if you're interested anyway...

First password: Genisolaris
Second password: Corsica

I guess this is the common denominator between readers and writers - good books. In this case a very crafty marketing ploy at the very least. The website isn't amazingly impressive, but it does showcase some professional features. It makes me think of how I would like to market my book when I get it published. This should revolutionize book marketing.

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Near-Time Develops Book Building Website

Wiley Technology Publishing and Wrox Press partners with developer Near-Time to generate a wiki-based software that allows books to be viewed in an online publishing platform, reports Publisher's Weekly.

Wiki-based software allows publishers to post interconnected content permitting users multiple levels of access to the text itself, along with other digital functionality.

“Publishers want to extend the e-book format,” Near-Time’s Joel Bush said. “Our technology offers publishers the ability to get consumer feedback, add rich media, create an online community or even make a book available online while it is still being edited.” Bush noted that the software lets publishers revive interest in backlist titles and easily promote new titles. Near-Time’s software also allows publishers to offer content free or through subscription access or to support the text with advertising.

I think it's kind of like Google Book Search only that it publishes books while they are still in the process of being completed. Somebody's still writing the book and it's already available online, kind of like a soap opera on television where you can await the next chapter. In itself, this concept I think holds a lot of promise and peril for authors. This will help authors be motivated if they know someone is already interested in their work. But it can also be a haven for plagiarism and content piracy issues.

"Our Name In History" Your Ancestry Self Published By Booksurge



The self publishing and print-on-demand company Booksurge reported that it is collaborating with Ancestry.com - a genealogy website to publish a series of family history books. To be titled "Our Name In History" these series of books will have over 250,000 volumes and will be sold on Amazon.This makes sense as Booksurge is part of the Amazon group of companies.

What's amazing here is that historical records from the 1600s will be dug about in relation to hundreds of thousands of common names in the United States. This study originates from five billion names of US Census data and other historical records.

Monday, November 5, 2007

Conventional Publishing Challenged - The Tucker Max Dare


I found an article on Comment Is free entitled "Publisher Brought to Book: Unadventurous publishers and booksellers are facing a challenge from new writers who find an audience on the internet." This article basically outlines how Tucker Max, a writer originally rejected by many publishing houses he tried to contact because his book was not saleable. He went online to self-publish 2 books through online publishing houses - Lulu.com & iUniverse.com.

He authored a new type of book that has begun to challenge the publishers and bookstores that leave small independent authors without a voice.

Tucker Max was a "belligerent and debauched" ex-law student who started by establishing a following on the internet and eventually joined the New York Times bestseller list with his book, I Hope They Serve Beer in Hell.

According to sources, the publishers' real problem was they had no idea how to market the book.
This, Max realised, is where conventional marketing techniques have failed to capitalise - not only on his own work but on internet literature in general. What the publishing houses had not fully realised was that Max's site had a monthly hit-rate of more than two million unique visits, and a fan base that was actively teeming with support on the website's message board. After months of constant rejections, the book was finally picked up by Kensington Books, the last independent publishing house in the US. His idiosyncratic self-belief eventually paid off in 2006. The UK edition has since been picked up by Penguin, and he has reportedly been offered a $300,000 advance on his next book.

Because of the subject matter, the book's scope for literary acclaim is limited, but the wonder is that it has seen the shelves at all, and it is the power of the internet that has given Max and authors like him a voice.

Max's success did not go unnoticed in the publishing industry, and a number of other writers have since landed book deals on the strength of their online following. Their subjects are various, but New York Times bestseller successes have been enjoyed by books spun off from websites such as Thebestpageintheuniverse.net, a long-running catalogue of satire, criticism and vitriol that has become one of the most popular non-commercial sites on the web. The subversive cartoon site ColoringBookLand.com and satirical news site Thephatphree.com are other such examples. In the UK, the most recognised of these is probably the anyonymous blogger Belle De Jour, who is also a best-selling author and subject of ITV2's new flagship drama The Secret Diary of a Call Girl.

The sites and their cross-over books have attracted reverence and revilement in equal degree, and because of their content, they are always likely to be sniffed at by literary critics. Regardless of merit, though, their niche appeal poses a unique challenge to the publishing and bookselling industry.

With the conventional bounds imposed by marketing strategies removed, authors can write about what interests them, no matter how niche it seems. Publishers have the choice to publish, regardless of whether it seems saleable (because an unvisited site is much less of a financial headache than a warehouse full of unsold books). Ultimately, readers have the choice of what to read, far more so than they do in conventional bookshops, where deals have been struck to ensure that big books make big profits, while the weak - meaning the original, the untested - fall by the wayside.

This is by no means the end of the predictable McNovels that dominate our bookstores, but with online publishing opportunities increasing, and online booksellers like Amazon, (whose stock is dictated by demand,) becoming ever more dominant, bookstores might finally have cause to rethink the way they fill their shelves.

Friday, November 2, 2007

November Publishing Promotion: Xulon Press

Here's a special publishing services offer I found on Xulon Press. Their services start at $999 so it's a little expensive I think but the offer looks okay to me. They are a self publishing company.

Xulon Press Special Publishing Offer: During November get our Best-Seller package for $1,849 and save $650. Offer expires November 30th, 2007 (3:00 P.M. EST).

The 8th Harry Potter Book - NOT Published?

For all book-lovers out there, J.K. Rowling added one more book to her Harry Potter series.
According to Publsher's Weekly, "The Tales of Beedle the Bard is the real-life incarnation of a collection of wizarding fairytales mentioned in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows as a gift left to Hermione by Professor Dumbledore."

Apparently the book is handwritten and contains illustrations by Rowling. This has to be one of the most personal books ever written as according to J.K. Rowling - writing the book “has been the most wonderful way to say goodbye to a world I have loved and lived in for 17 years,” she told the AP.

Only seven copies of the title were printed, with a brown leather binding and elaborate silver and gemstone decorative accents. Reuters reported that in a dedication to the book, Rowling states, “Six of these books have been given to those most closely connected to the Harry Potter books during the last 17 years. This seventh copy will be auctioned; the proceeds to help institutionalized children who are in desperate need of a voice. So to whoever owns this book, thank you—and fair fortune be yours.”

Sotheby’s will auction the book December 13 with an opening price of $62,000. The winning bid will be donated to Rowling’s charity The Children’s Voice.

I hope whoever gets the last of the 7 copies, will post the book online for the rest of us humble-folk who will probably never lay a hand on it.

I'm willing to bet though that time will come, this book will be published - especially with the growing demand and hype. Maybe that's the point of all this - to make some noise and establish the relative demand of the book - and then they can publish it full tilt, because right now I still see some copies of the Deathly Hallows already at something like 10% off in some bookstores. Guess that's how traditional publishing works.

Thursday, November 1, 2007

November Book Publishing Promotion: Xlibris

I've heard about Xlibris being a print on demand services provider, but associates itself to Random House Ventures. Basically standing out as a self publishing company.

Xlibris Publishing Promotion for November includes a free publishing package - like a buy one take one deal applicable to black and white as well as their full color publishing packages.

If you don't like to take this though, they have an alternative - a dollar discount of about 20% off. This makes sense I guess. I don't even have my first book ready yet, but might be a good deal for writers who are thinking about publishing sequels to their book.

Xlibris sounds much more affordable now but I'm still keeping my fingers crossed that some kind-hearted agent will pick up my book. But I guess the option to self publish is always there (when I get the money).

November Book Publishing Promotion: iUniverse

iUniverse I read is a self publishing company that has partnered with Barnes and Noble. And recently they were bought by Authorhouse I believe. Not sure what that means but they must be much bigger then. Anyway I was reading through their site and found their November special which lasts about 15 days.

The iUniverse Publishing Promotion this November comes with a discount that's about 11% of the original price but includes free books, I guess this is on top of the books they already have in their publishing package.

Promotion Description:

Save $150 off the regular price of a Premier Pro Publishing Package and get 15 extra FREE paperback books. (Reg. $1,299) Now only $1,149!
Code: NOVPRO150

Save $100 off the regular price of a Premier Publishing Package and get 10 extra FREE paperback books. (Reg. $899) Now only $799!
Code: NOVPRE100

Save $50 off the regular price of a Select Publishing Package and get 5 extra FREE paperback books. (Reg. $599) Now only $549!
Code: NOVSEL50

Still a little steep for me though but just thought I'd share. Here's hoping I won't have to pay when I get ready to publish my book.