Bill's Blog

Book Publishing News

Jan 20, 2011

I hope your holidays were pleasant, safe, and relaxing. Martha and I spent Christmas in Jacksonville, Florida, where three young, energetic grandchildren kept us busy.

Sorry for being so lax with blog posts. I’ll use the holidays as one excuse. I’ve also been dealing with the usual flood of queries after the first of the year, when many writers renew their efforts to get their first books published. I love it when a new manuscript from a new writer hits my desk (well . . . nowadays it usually hits my computer screen, but you know what I mean) and I start reading and think, Wow, this is good! I’m usually the first professional in the business to have seen the book. The author has no idea whether or not the book is any good, and I’m the one who gets to break the news. It doesn’t get much better than that.

Of course, sometimes I have to tell writers that they should be spending their time doing something else. That doesn’t feel so good, but I’ve learned how to be honest without being brutal.

Besides the holidays and an especially heavy load of queries, I’ve also been working through the final steps in the publishing process for my own novel, Bloodright. It’s scheduled for release on January 25, but it will probably be another two or three weeks before it’s available in bookstores and online booksellers. You can find out more about Bloodright here: http://www.mundania.com/book.php?title=Bloodright. I’ll write more about the publishing experience in a couple of weeks. I’ll say right now, though, that I love the people at Mundania Press. Working with them has been a pleasure, and I’m looking forward to future novels with them.

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Book Publishing in the News

Here are some news stories and commentary that caught my eye over the past three weeks.

Third-Generation Kindle Now the Bestselling Product of All Time on Amazon Worldwide

If you remain unconvinced that e-books are taking over the book publishing business, this should give you pause. Amazon announced last week that the third-generation Kindle is now the bestselling product in Amazon’s history, selling even better than Harry Potter 7. More Kindle books were downloaded on Christmas Day than on any other day in history, with Stieg Larsson’s novel The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo topping the list.

Nora Roberts, Stieg Larsson, James Patterson Top Sales on Kindle

More about e-books. According to Amazon, best-selling author Nora Roberts (romance and suspense thrillers) has sold more than 1.1 million Kindle books.

Why Google Acquired eBook Technologies

Google has acquired eBook Technologies, a company whose primary business is e-books and e-book readers. This article explains the technology and what the acquisition is all about.

Wither Borders?

The challenges facing Borders, the huge bookstore chain, epitomize the challenges facing traditional booksellers in general. Here are some good news articles and commentary.

Ten Best Kept Book Publishing and Marketing Secrets

If you self-publish your book, here are some good suggestions about how to market it.

Smart Self-Publishing: How to Get Published Without Getting Scammed

This article has some good advice for authors who decide to self-publish.

How to Make Money Online by Selling Books

Publishing your book as an e-book is quick, easy, and cheap. This article has some marketing suggestions for self-published e-books. I know that many authors decide to self-publish their books, and in some cases that can be the best (or only) option. But I have to admit that, to me, there’s something disheartening about these types of articles, which are becoming more and more popular. People are being encouraged to write books in the same way they’re encouraged to try the latest money-making scheme on the Internet. Writing shouldn’t be about getting rich fast, or about pumping up writers’ egos when they should be taking the time and effort to improve their skills. Writing should be about the love of the craft. Maybe I’m just old-fashioned.

Is this Holiday Punch Spiked or Was 2010 a Year of Hope?

Erin Cox reviews the year in book publishing, acknowledging the challenges but ultimately feeling hopeful for the future. This post contains “Lucky Seven List of Things Erin Cox is Thankful for in Publishing 2010.”

Penny Arcade web comic – “We call it Book.”

I’ll end with something that may make you smile.

Questions about this topic? Call me at (505) 401-1021 or send me an email at william@wgreenleaf.com. I’m in my office most weekdays from 9 to 5.

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