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Indie Press Network launches to connect small indie publishers

thebookseller.com – Tuesday November 14, 2023

The Indie Press Network has launched with the aim of connecting independent publishers with each other, as well as with booksellers and readers.

The open network will offer promotion opportunities for established presses’ titles and authors, as well as free, open-access resources for those starting out.

The Indie Press Network was founded by Will Dady of Renard Press, and is launching with an inaugural cohort of 10 member presses. It is open to all small publishers with five or fewer employees and aims to encourage and support new "would-be" publishers.

According to Renard Press, the network seeks to build on the work being done by other membership organisations to "decolonise publishing and to raise the profile of smaller presses who don’t have big marketing budgets".

[Read the full article]

Loch Long crime writing residency launched

thelochsidepress.com – Friday November 10, 2023

A new two-week residency for crime writers has been launched by Cove Park.

The fully-funded programme is for Scotland-based writers developing new work in crime fiction and scheduled to run in late March next year.

The writer will receive a total residency fee of £1,100 (£550 per week) and a travel allowance of up to £75 from the arts centre on the Rosneath Peninsula.

To apply, writers must be based in Scotland and have published at least one book with a traditional publisher.

[Read the full article]

Demand for creative writing courses outpaces supply

stanforddaily.com – Tuesday November 7, 2023

It might seem that putting words to paper is hard, but for those interested in creative writing classes, it might be more difficult to get into a class.

Many creative writing courses are known for their long waitlists and enrollment caps, but the root of the issue lies with a low supply of lecturers and courses to meet the high student demand for courses. The low supply of lecturers stems from an even larger problem: funding. 

For Kathaleen Mallard ’25, it was incredibly difficult for her to get into the creative writing classes she wanted, even as an English major with a creative writing emphasis. 

“I feel like the demand was obviously much greater than the amount of classes that there were, so it was hard to get into anything,” Mallard said. Some of her courses required course enrollment forms, but seniority remained a large factor of selection, making it difficult to enroll into the classes that were part of the core major requirements. 

Mallard believes that this could affect students in the future who wish to pursue an English major with a creative writing emphasis or a creative writing minor, who may not get to explore classes in the department because of low enrollment caps. She also raised the waitlist experience for creative writing courses. Since most people are unlikely to drop their spots in class, it’s really hard to get off the waitlist for these classes, Mallard said. 

[Read the full article]

Amazon Sues Scammers Targeting Authors

publishersweekly.com – Wednesday November 1, 2023

Amazon this week announced that it has filed a lawsuit in the Northern District of California against some 20 individuals scamming authors by falsely claiming an affiliation with Amazon Publishing and Kindle Direct Publishing. According to the suit, the scammers run fake Amazon knockoff websites designed to lure would-be authors into paying a fee to publish, and then deliver either substandard or no service at all.

“Defendants use the Amazon Marks in their domain names and on their websites to divert victims from Amazon’s genuine websites to Defendants’ websites that purport to offer services to help authors create, edit, and publish their works through [Amazon Publishing or Kindle Direct Publishing],” the suit states, adding that, “to further the ruse of affiliation with Amazon” the websites often have chat boxes or advertise phone numbers to call that provide “false and misleading representations of affiliation with Amazon.”

[Read the full article]

Kindle Direct Publishing Will Beta Test Virtual Voice–Narrated Audiobooks

publishersweekly.com – Wednesday November 1, 2023

In a post today in the Kindle Direct Publishing community forum, the self-publishing giant announced that it has begun a beta test on technology allowing KDP authors to produce audiobook versions of their e-books using virtual voice narration. The ability to create an audiobook using synthetic speech technology is likely to result in a boom in the number of audiobooks produced by KDP authors. According to an Amazon spokesperson, currently only 4% of titles self-published through KDP have an audiobook available.

Under the new initiativeauthors can choose one of their eligible e-books already on the KDP platform, then sample voices, preview the work, and customize the audiobook. After publication, audiobooks will be live within 72 hours, and will distributed wherever Audible titles are sold. Prices can be set between $3.99 and $14.99 and authors will receive a 40% royalty. All audiobooks created by virtual voice, the post says, will be clearly labeled and, as with any audiobook, customers can listen to samples.

[Read the full article]

Outside Frankfurt’s LitAG: A New Report on Agenting

publishingperspectives.com – Thursday October 19, 2023

A new survey on American literary agents’ experience surfaces concerns about the business model’s viability, diversity, and burnout in a demanding job.

‘An Industry in Flux’

This year’s Literary Agents and Scouts Center has been a quick success, with all 584 tables sold out long before the fair opened.

With its tables and chairs turning quickly between rights meetings, a lot of lore—almost a romanticism—has made itself part of the mystique of Frankfurter Buchmesse.

Easily one of the biggest smiles in the LitAg this year will be on the face of Gina Winje, the literary agent whose Winge Agency in Porsgrunn, Norway, represents Jon Fosse, who recently won the Nobel Prize in Literature. Winje was touched, she said, to be hearing from co-agents, scouts, co-publishers and others in the industry: “I’m overwhelmed by the warmth and happiness,” she told Publishing Perspectives.

But as much as the industry understands and appreciates the LitAg as “the beating heart” of the world’s largest international book fair, a report that arrived early this month indicates that many literary agents may be struggling in their work as the industry evolves, many markets’ economies go into flux, and making ends meet gets harder.

Literary agents—so critical to the international industry’s viability and health—could use some attention, as members of the profession report they’re experiencing more burnout than before, not least because the job entails so much “invisible labor,” for which agents aren’t paid.

[Read the full article]

Frankfurt-Bound Nermin Mollaoğlu Opens a Press in the UK

publishingperspectives.com – Saturday October 14, 2023

It’s not every day that a literary agent tells you she’s opening a publishing house. But that’s the case today (October 12), with a message from one of the best-known regulars in Frankfurter Buchmesse‘s (October 18 to 22) sold-out Literary Agents and Scouts Center, the “LitAg.”

Nermin Mollaoğlu—who tells Publishing Perspectives that her Kalem Agency in Istanbul now has 13 team members—is working with Tasja Dorkofikis and Geraldine D’Amico to establish Linden Editions in London, a publishing house with a mission to promote translation, internationalism, and “cross-cultural understanding.”

“It came out of our joint desire to publish outstanding literary works of fiction, narrative nonfiction, reportage, and essays, as well as some modern classics primarily in translation from Europe, the francophone world, and the Mediterranean region.”

In an exchange with us today, Mollaoğlu says, “I will definitely go on with Kalem. I love working as an agent.”

But the new press, she says, “will give me more opportunity to try another side of agenting, as we’ll buy some titles for the world rights and I’ll be selling them to the world, as well.”

[Read the full article]

Poland joins CAA as agent in books department

thebookseller.com – Thursday October 12, 2023

Harriet Poland has joined the books department at the Creative Artists Agency (CAA) as an agent.

Poland will be working across a range of books, including narrative, voice-driven non-fiction, pop culture, memoir and journalism.

She comes to the agency from Hodder & Stoughton, where she was editorial director and published several titles from authors including Rob Delaney, Garth Marenghi and Jessie Ware. Prior to Hodder, she held positions at Hodder Studio, Audible and The Hanbury Agency.

[Read the full article]

AnyBook is aiming to be “the Netflix or Spotify” of publishing

calcalistech.com – Monday October 9, 2023

The company has raised a total of $2 million to help revolutionize the publishing industry

“The book industry is lagging behind while other content-based industries are flourishing and revolutionizing themselves,” explained AnyBook co-founder and CEO Eliran Navon. “While other industries have been completely disrupted and changed by digitization, like Netflix and Spotify in the entertainment and music industries, 80% of book sales are still physical books.”

AnyBook was founded to tackle this. Alongside his partners, he decided to create a model that would provide a new experience that would expand usage and encourage consumers to read more. “Thanks to AnyBook’s technology, workplaces can provide employees with a continuous supply of books they’ll find compelling and enjoyable,” he said.

[Read the full article]

A New Trend Shows AI Generated Books Are Plagarising Famous Authors’ Writing

techround.co.uk – Monday October 2, 2023

Artificial intelligence- although a great development- continues to cause worries across career paths. This now includes the publishing industry. The rise of AI has introduced a new trend in the literary world – AI-generated books. This has created a mix of emotions among authors, readers, and publishing platforms alike.

Rory Cellan-Jones, a writer-journalist, was surprised to find a biography about him on Amazon. The book, which he had not authored, featured a poorly designed cover and was written by an unknown individual. Cellan-Jones stated, “I thought: ‘This is strange — who’s writing a biography of me?’”.

[Read the full article]

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