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Writers' News

Publishers Association corrects key figure on author pay

thebookseller.com – Sunday August 19, 2018

The Publishers Association (PA) has admitted a key figure it released on author pay was wrong; in fact authors received more money from publishers in 2016 than previously thought, with the figure first cited close to £190m out. 

Writing in The Bookseller this week Stephen Lotinga, c.e.o. of the PA, said that a report released by the trade body in March, conducted by Frontier Economics, incorrectly calculated that the total payments consumer authors received in 2016 were £161m, based on advances, royalties, secondary licensing and rights.

However, Lotinga said the correct figure with the inclusion of advances stood at around £350m - a leap of £189m.

The report caused a furore when it was originally released earlier this year, with the Society of Authors (SoA) calculating that writers received around 3% of publishers' turnover in 2016 when taking into account the £161m figure, while publishers' profit margins were much higher.

[Read the full article]

Indie publishers unite for new podcast

thebookseller.com – Sunday August 19, 2018

Canongate, Faber and Profile imprint Serpent's Tail are launching a fortnightly podcast to champion independent publishing, authors and bookshops.

Read Like a Writeis hosted by journalist Anna Fielding and each episode will feature authors recommending their favourite books, often around a theme such as childhood favourites or favourite classics, and talking about their own work. They will also discuss their favourite local independent bookshop and its importance in their lives.

The first episode, featuring Matt Haig, has been released, with Shaun Bythell, Gina Miller, Sarah Perry, Elizabeth Foley and Beth Coates all lined up for future episodes.

[Read the full article]

ICM Promotes Three to Agents

variety.com – Tuesday August 7, 2018

Talent agency ICM Partners has promoted three to agents.

ICM upped Celestine Au and Madeline Feder to agents in the talent department, and Viviane Telio to agent in the motion picture literary department.

Au started at ICM in 2015, spending two years as a talent department assistant before being promoted to talent department coordinator last year. Au was recognized as one of Variety’s 10 Assistants to Watch in 2017 and is part of Time’s Up Next Gen. She was born in Hong Kong and raised in Shanghai before moving to the U.S. to attend UCLA, where she completed 12 internships and graduated with a degree in communication studies. She is fluent in Mandarin and has traveled to China with ICM agents, acting as an interpreter, and helping the team close deals and sign clients.

[Read the full article]

Judith Appelbaum, a Guide for Would-Be Authors, Dies at 78

nytimes.com – Monday July 30, 2018

Judith Appelbaum, whose almost 60-year career in book publishing became a crusade to make the industry better — for writers, publishers and readers — died on Wednesday at her home in Bedford, N.Y. She was 78.

Alan Appelbaum, her husband of 57 years, said the cause was ovarian cancer.

Ms. Appelbaum held numerous jobs in the book publishing industry. During the early 1980s she was managing editor of Publishers Weekly and wrote the “Paperback Talk” column for The New York Times Book Review. But her best-remembered and most influential project may have been the 1978 book “How to Get Happily Published: A Complete and Candid Guide,” which she wrote with Nancy Evans.

[Read the full article]

Marjacq to push further into the heart of the action in its 45th year

thebookseller.com – Sunday July 29, 2018

Despite concerns about the "Spotification of literature" and the unknowns of Brexit, Marjacq’s director Guy Herbert is in an upbeat mood as he welcomes me to the central London office of the boutique literary agency, which turns 45 this year.

What follows is a more chaotic interview than the average company profile for The Bookseller, as his six-agent team piles into the small meeting space along with their leader. We are forced to conduct the interview in two stages as there are not enough chairs to fit all the staff in, but the conversation that follows is peppered with the words "collegiate" and "collaborative", and it is clear that these phrases are not merely paying lip service.

[Read the full article]

Inspiration or plagiarism? Writing hackles raised in Boston dispute

bostonglobe.com – Friday July 27, 2018

Good artists copy, but great artists steal, or so the old saying goes. But the truth may be far more complicated, as shown by a recent case of alleged plagiarism that rattled through Boston’s literary scene.

Accusations arose in June that a small section of a piece of short fiction chosen by the Boston Book Festival for its annual One City One Story program contained material lifted from another, real-life source. The group is planning to distribute now slightly modified copies of the work for free starting in late August.

The story, “The Kindest,” by Boston writer Sonya Larson, involves a kidney donation and was published last year in American Short Fiction to praise and acclaim. The objections, raised by a former friend of Larson who said the writer had lifted material from her Facebook post, eventually triggered legal and ethical inquiriesas well as questions of when and how it is acceptable for the stuff of real life — someone else’s life in particular — to be transformed into art.

[Read the full article]

US audio booms by 29% but overall publishing sales dip

thebookseller.com – Tuesday July 24, 2018

American publishers’ total industry sales dipped slightly in 2017, but audio downloads continued to boom, rising by 28.8% year-on-year.

The Association of American Publishers' (AAP) annual StatShot puts 2017’s industry sales at $26.23bn, showing a slight decline from $26.27bn the year before.

The figures contain publishers’ net revenues from trade, higher education, course materials, school instructional materials, professional books and university press, across all formats from all distribution channels and do not represent retailer or consumer sales figures.

[Read the full article]

Robertson to leave Faber to start new literary agency

thebookseller.com – Friday July 20, 2018

Charlotte Robertson, sales and marketing director and paperback publisher at Faber, is to leave the company to become managing director of a new literary agency in association with Arlington Management.

Robertson will leave the company at the end of the year and start her own literary agency with Arlington Management, a talent agency which represents people such as Kirstie Allsopp and Ben Fogle. Faber will announce plans regarding the appointment of a successor in due course.

[Read the full article]

Writers, Editors, Illustrators, Publishers aim to create a book in 8 hours

jpost.com – Wednesday July 18, 2018

How long does it take to create a book from start to finish? For 44 authors, 33 illustrators and 29 editors, publishers and marketers gathering in Jerusalem Thursday night, they’re hoping the answer is eight hours.

The project, being hosted at the JVP Media Quarter, is the brainchild of tech entrepreneur Uriel Shuraki.

“Writing a book usually takes months or years,” Shuraki told The Jerusalem Post on Wednesday. “And I decided to do it in one day – in eight hours, the length of a normal working day.”

[Read the full article]

New edition of award-winning mystery writing guide

firstwriter.com – Wednesday July 18, 2018

A new, revised edition of G. Miki Hayden's award-winning guide for mystery writers has just been released, and is now available to buy both in print and as an ebook.

G. Miki Hayden is a long-time member and former board member of Mystery Writers of America, and regularly teaches a mystery writing workshop (and other courses) at Writer’s Digest online university. This third edition of her book, Writing the Mystery: A Start-to-Finish Guide for Both Novice and Professional, provides invaluable step-by-step advice on shaping plots, developing characters, and creating a fast-paced and compelling mystery for the modern market. It includes practical exercises, guidance on how to approach agents and publishers and get your novel to market, and a whole new section on the self-publishing phenomenon that has exploded since the publication of the first edition.

[Read the full article]

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