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Writers' News

A Mysterious Phishing Scam Is Roiling the Publishing Industry

theattic.jezebel.com – Tuesday December 22, 2020

The publishing industry has become the target of an international phishing scam, according to the New York Times. What usually happens is this: The author of a book will receive an email that appears to have been sent by their agent or editor, requesting the most recent draft of their manuscript. Not suspecting anything out of the ordinary, the authors attach the document, and then...nothing. They later realize that the person to whom they replied was not their agent or editor, but never do they learn what has happened to their manuscript. The manuscripts don’t seem to end up anywhere on the internet, and no one ever gets in touch with the writer or publishing house to demand a ransom or anything of the sort.

[Read the full article]

Announcing the 2021 National Magazine Awards Categories & Call for Entries

newswire.ca – Tuesday December 22, 2020

TORONTO, Dec. 21, 2020 /CNW/ - The National Media Awards Foundation is thrilled to announce the call for entries and to unveil the lineup of categories for the 44th annual National Magazine Awards. The lineup includes 29 categories and two special, prestigious awards: Magazine Grand Prix and the Foundation Award for Outstanding Achievement.

The Foundation is also pleased to introduce an exciting, cross-programming initiative. National Magazine Awards participants are invited to submit their work to a series of seven unique categories, and these entries will compete among those submitted to the Digital Publishing Awards (DPA) and National Magazine Awards: B2B (NMA) programs. A single panel of judges will evaluate all entries, with winners announced across all three programs.

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Julie Burchill's publisher cancels book contract over Islam tweets

theguardian.com – Wednesday December 16, 2020

The journalist Julie Burchill has had a book contract cancelled after her publisher said she “crossed a line” with her Islamophobic comments on Twitter.

Burchill’s publisher, the Hachette imprint Little, Brown, said it had decided not to publish Welcome to the Woke Trials because she had used indefensible language when communicating with the journalist Ash Sarkar.

[Read the full article]

'It’s been a rollercoaster': how indie publishers survived - and thrived - in 2020

theguardian.com – Wednesday December 16, 2020

Six months ago, independent publishers Jacaranda and Knights Of were warning publicly that their income had fallen to almost zero. They weren’t the only small publishers struggling. With bookshops and distributors closing, a survey from the Bookseller at the time found that almost 60% of small publishers feared closure by the autumn. No bookshops meant no knowledgeable, passionate booksellers pressing new books they loved on to customers; no events and no travel meant that crucial avenues for introducing new writers had disappeared.

The stars had been looking very happily aligned for Oneworld in March. The independent publisher had three of its biggest books scheduled for the month – a novel from Women’s prize winner Tayari Jones, Silver Sparrow; a new thriller from the bestselling crime author Will Dean, Black River; and Damien Love’s novel for older children, Monstrous Devices. It had printed point-of-sale materials, invested in marketing, advertising, printing.

Then came the first national lockdown. “Silver Sparrow came out on the Thursday and then on the Monday the bookshops shut,” says Juliet Mabey, the publisher whose impeccable taste saw Oneworld win two Booker prizes in a row with novels from Marlon James and Paul Beatty. “It was incredibly frustrating and stressful.”

[Read the full article]

Kick 2020 goodbye: Enter our haiku writing contest

cleveland.com – Thursday December 10, 2020

CLEVELAND, Ohio – Thanksgiving is gone, the holidays are around the corner, and New Year’s – New Year’s! – is coming soon.

Face it: 2021 cannot get here fast enough.

The year was barely under way when ‘Wuhan’ was added to our geographic lexicon as coronavirus spread its tentacles across the globe. The virus brought illness, deaths, cancellations, shelter-at-home orders and squabbling politicians. It’s going to remain with us for a while, but we can get in one last shot before the year is out.

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Please, Give Us the Bad Sex Writing

thecut.com – Thursday December 10, 2020

Every year since 1993, the industrious editors at the British magazine the Literary Review have sat down with steaming cuppas and pored over some of the most wretched sex writing in fiction from the past year, seeking out the “most outstandingly awful scene of sexual description.” And then, once they’ve identified the most appalling passage — which, in the past, have included the phrase “a coil of excrement” and used the word “cum” seven times — they bestow the writer responsible for it the honorable Bad Sex in Fiction Award.

While all the passages that the editors consider — which they deliver in the form of a shortlist — unfailingly inspire revulsion, every year we look forward to learning what men think sex is. But this year, we will be denied this rich source of both disgust and joy: The magazine has called off the prize.

[Read the full article]

Welbeck acquires mental health publisher Trigger

thebookseller.com – Thursday December 10, 2020

Welbeck Publishing Group has become the majority owner of the mental health and wellbeing publisher, Trigger Publishing.

Welbeck said it will build on Trigger’s founder, Adam Shaw’s vision "to enhance the footprint in mental health publishing" across all channels and on a worldwide basis.

As part of the deal, Jo Lal, publisher of Trigger, and Lyndsey Mayhew, sales and marketing lead, will move across to Welbeck.

[Read the full article]

The Canceling Of Another Young Adult Author Over Made Up Allegations Of Racism

hotair.com – Saturday December 5, 2020

For some reason the Young Adult Fiction subculture has become one of the most woke and therefore toxic online. Nearly two years ago Jesse Singal wrote about the cancelation of author Amélie Wen Zhao whose unpublished novel Blood Heir was accused of being racist despite the fact that no one had read it.

This week Singal has been tweeting about another case of mob justice in the YA space on Twitter. Author Jessica Cluess has been accused of racism. The problem wasn’t her book in this instance it was a disagreement she had with someone else on Twitter. That someone else happened to be a minority and so the cancel culture mob is off to the races. Singal’s thread starts with Jessica’s agent throwing her under the bus:

[Read the full article]

Helen Sword devises a new writing tool to sharpen your prose

indiaeducationdiary.in – Friday December 4, 2020

Helen, an internationally acclaimed expert on writing in all genres, lectures in English in the Faculty of Arts and is an affiliate of the Centre for Arts and Social Transformation in the Faculty of Education. She is a scholar and a poet whose passion is helping others improve their writing, especially academic writing.

Originally from Southern California, she has lived in New Zealand for nearly 20 years with her Kiwi husband, Dr Richard Sorrenson. Her popular book The Writer’s Diet was published by Auckland University Press in 2015 and is supplemented by a website (writersdiet.com) that she says attracts around 100,000 visitors a year from all over the world. Through the website, writers can paste their text into an analysis tool that determines whether their prose would benefit from tightening up.

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PRH Purchase of S&S Draws Objections

publishersweekly.com – Tuesday December 1, 2020

Following the announcement that Penguin Random House parent company Bertelsmann won the bidding war for Simon & Schuster with a $2.2 billion offer, members of the book business and related organizations have begun to weigh in.

In a statement on Wednesday, the Authors Guild laid out its opposition to the proposed deal. The sale "would mean that the combined publishing house would account for approximately 50% of all trade books published, creating a huge imbalance in the U.S. publishing industry," the Guild said. (Penguin Random House's global CEO, Markus Dohle, told PW that he believes PRH's publishing market share is about 14.2% and S&S's 4.2%, including self-publishing; others have estimated the combined companies' market share would amount to roughly one third of the U.S. book market.)

[Read the full article]

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