"Not very many people read. Most of them drag their knuckles around and quarrel and make money. We’re selling books. It’s a tiny little business. It doesn’t have to be Walmartized."
Superagent Andrew Wylie, who represents Martin Amis, Salman Rushdie, Elmore Leonard, and Philip Roth, among others, talks about the future of publishing, his on-again-off-again relationship with Amazon, and "effete, educated snobs who read," with the New Republic.
posted by escabeche
on Oct 7, 2013 -
"..it is refreshing to see Jason Merkoski
, a leader of the team that built Amazon's first Kindle, dispense with the usual techo-utopianism and say, “I think we’ve made a proverbial pact with the devil in digitizing our words.” [more inside]
posted by stbalbach
on Apr 9, 2013 -
The book publishing world is merging into behemoths in order to better negotiate with Amazon. Rupert Murdoch (HarperCollins) has made an offer
to buy Penguin for $1.6 billion
. This just hours after Penguin said it was in talks to merge with Random House to create a 'Random Penguin' with nearly 25% of all English-language book sales. Either way the reputation of Penguin could soon be in tatters.
As one agent said, "Authors have told me they are frightened by a Random House takeover, but terrified by a HarperCollins one."
posted by stbalbach
on Oct 29, 2012 -
is a veteran American cartoonist best known for his delightful comic-book guides to science and history, many of which have previews online. Chief among them is his long-running Cartoon History of the Universe
(later The Cartoon History of the Modern World
), a sprawling multi-volume opus documenting everything from the Big Bang to the Bush administration. Published over the course of three decades, it takes a truly global view -- its time-traveling Professor thoroughly explores not only familiar topics like Rome and World War II but the oft-neglected stories of Asia and Africa, blending caricature and myth with careful scholarship (cited by fun illustrated bibliographies
) and tackling even the most obscure events with intelligence and wit
. This savvy satire carried over to Gonick's Zinn
chronicle The Cartoon History of the United States
, along with a bevy of Cartoon Guides
to other topics, including Genetics, Computer Science, Chemistry, Physics, Statistics, The Environment
, and (yes!) Sex
. Gonick has also maintained a few sideprojects, such as a webcomic look at Chinese invention
, assorted math comics
), the Muse magazine
mainstay Kokopelli & Co.
(featuring the shenanigans of his "New Muses"
), and more
. See also these lengthy interview snippets
, linked previously
. Want more? Amazon links to the complete oeuvre inside! [more inside]
posted by Rhaomi
on Jun 6, 2011 -
The announcement of the iPad
earlier this week has prompted a lot of discussion about ebook prices among publishers and their sales partners. That discussion took a major turn yesterday when Amazon pulled the buy buttons for Macmillan's books off their site
. Many of Macmillan's titles are still available through Amazon, but only through third parties. Right now, one of the largest publishers in America is no longer available from Amazon because they can not agree on ebook prices. [more inside]
posted by Toekneesan
on Jan 30, 2010 -
Some are calling it the "Kindle Killer".
(Demo launch video at engadget
.) Plastic Logic's new e-reader, expected to be out in the first half of 2009, does promise to offer a lot that Kindle and most other other popular e-readers don't, like a larger display, big enough to provide a newspaper or magazine layout; touch-based markup and annotation; the ability to read standard documents and other file types without conversion; (promised) Wi-Fi connectivity (including the ability to transfer documents between readers); and last but not least, a screen display that you can hit with a shoe
, and isn't that something we've all been waiting for during these tense times? [more inside]
posted by taz
on Sep 13, 2008 -
The Penguin Classics Library Complete Collection
. "From Edwin A. Abbott to Emile Zola, the 1,082 titles in the Penguin Classics Complete Library total nearly half a million pages."
The weight of the books is approximately 700 pounds. Amazon is offering free shipping! I wonder how big the box would be waiting at my door. (via
posted by clgregor
on Jun 28, 2005 -
Visual Relationships at Amazon.com
- Here's an interesting visual implementation of the Amazon API. It's almost like flipping through books on the shelf. What's next? A 3D bookstore rendered on the Quake engine?
posted by Argyle
on Mar 3, 2003 -
Authors Guild seeks to stop Amazon from selling used books.
It's the analog version of RIAA vs. Napster!
"Amazon's practice does damage to the publishing industry, decreasing royalty payments to authors and profits to publishers. In time, as we pointed out to Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos when it first began this practice over a year ago, the financial loss to the industry could affect the quality and diversity of literature made available through booksellers. If profits suffer, publishers will cut their investments in new works, and authors facing reduced advances and royalties will have to find other ways to earn income. "
Read Jeff Bezos' email to Amazon Associate Members
posted by Brilliantcrank
on Apr 18, 2002 -
Whatever Next? Amazon Makes A Profit!
Having lost $3 billion so far, Amazon Books has just posted its first-ever profit of $5 million. Perhaps it was thanks to the new machines
they bought to replace more workers.(this last link req. NYT reg.
) How would you
spend it if you were Jeff Bezos? And what does it mean: has the tide turned or not?
posted by MiguelCardoso
on Jan 22, 2002 -
The latest Holt Uncensored is a review of online book stores from various regions of the U.S., including Boulder Bookstore
, with its "invaluable subsites," YogaSight.com and BuddhaSight.com, Square Books
where "You'll feel almost set down in the hot and leafy Courthouse Square of Oxford, Mississippi," Amazon Bookstore Cooperative
("not *that* Amazon [but] the oldest independent feminist bookstore in North America" (in Minneapolis) - and a dozen more. Do you have a favorite that was left out?
posted by ferris
on Dec 2, 2001 -
Dark is Rising (Amazon link) by Susan Cooper.
This book, about an 11 year old boy, was given to me by my oldest sister when I turned 11. Now that I have kids of my own, I look forward to passing this book on to my son when he turns 11. Any other age-appropriate books that stand out in your mind, particularly if given when you were the age of the lead character?
posted by jmackin
on Oct 8, 2001 -
Borders outsources online sales to Amazon.com
The alliance, scheduled to be announced at a press conference in New York, is expected to involve Amazon effectively taking over the online operations of Borders, according to people familiar with the matter. Borders is expected to effectively exit from the online book-selling business, these people said. Further terms of the alliance couldn’t be learned, though Amazon is expected to receive promotion from Borders through its chain of off-line book stores.
posted by Brilliantcrank
on Apr 10, 2001 -
A new JD Salinger Book!
Just caught this on Amazon the other day. I haven't really heard anything about it, but it's worth a pre-order
at the least. Here's some other information
I've found. Along with the supposed introduction to the book...
I will write for us both, I believe, as Buddy is engaged elsewhere for an indefinite period of time. Surely sixty to eighty per cent of the time, to my eternal amusement and sorrow, that magnificent, elusive, comical lad is engaged elsewhere! As you must know in your hearts and bowels, we miss you all like sheer hell. Unfortunately, I am far from above hoping the case is vice versa.
posted by igloo
on Mar 6, 2001 -
Give It Away?
Seth Godin's book Idea Virus
is available for free on his website, but the book is ranked #973 on the Amazon.com
best-seller list (which means more than a few people are buying it anyway). Interesting...
posted by owillis
on Oct 8, 2000 -
Barnes And Noble steps up for sloppy seconds.
After Amazon elected not to renew their agreement with Yahoo, Barnes and Noble replaced the online bookseller as Yahoo's premier advertiser for books. It is uncertain as to whether or not Yahoo and BN have had the grueling discussion regarding the number of partners they've each shared in the past, but it looks like an optimistic relationship regardless.
posted by Hankins
on Sep 20, 2000 -