What the Amazon acquisition of Westland says about our publishing industry
business-standard.com – Sunday November 6, 2016
Excitement of this kind is quite rare in the publishing industry. The last came a few years ago when Random House took over Penguin. And now this Amazon buyout of Westland has given the industry an interesting conversation beginner. Amazon had signaled their intent in February this year when they acquired minority stake in Westland from Tata-Trent. It was known at that time itself that Amazon was not in this deal for a minority stake. Those who read the deal closely knew that at some point in time, Amazon would take over the company. That it would happen so soon (within six months of the initial acquisition) no one really anticipated.
Penguin Random House Rules the Children's Book Market
publishersweekly.com – Saturday November 5, 2016
It comes as no surprise that Penguin Random House—the country’s largest trade publisher—is also the biggest children’s book publisher. But the size of the gap between PRH and second-place HarperCollins might raise a few eyebrows.
Digital sales down 19%, but print strong for trade publishers in first half
thebookseller.com – Thursday November 3, 2016
Trade publishers’ digital revenues have fallen by 19% in the first six months of the year, but print sales are holding strong, new figures from the Publishers Association (PA) have revealed.
Sales data provided to the PA by UK publishing houses across trade, education and academic sectors show that print sales increased by 1% in the first six months of the year (January-June 2016) to £898m in comparison to the same period a year earlier, driven in particular by a 6% growth of trade books.
How a husband-and-wife publishing team won the Man Booker prize twice in a row
inews.co.uk – Friday October 28, 2016
The 18 publishers which turned down The Sellout must have felt a little sheepish at the 2016 Man Booker Prize ceremony. Paul Beatty’s satire was the second consecutive winner of the world’s leading literary award for Oneworld, a small independent founded by a husband-and-wife team, which has found huge success discovering novels shunned by the large publishing houses.
Gillon Aitken dies
thebookseller.com – Friday October 28, 2016
Literary agent Gillon Aitken of Aitken Alexander Associates has died.
Aitken died peacefully this morning (28th October) after a period of ill health.
Clare Alexander said: "A towering figure in so many of our lives, publishing has lost a great agent from a brilliant generation. He was a wise counsel, a true intellectual and an irreplaceable friend."
She added: "I am sure he would wish to be remembered in the words of some of the many authors who valued his guidance deeply and who came to love him so much."
Trade shock and sadness at death of Carole Blake
thebookseller.com – Thursday October 27, 2016
Literary agency Blake Friedmann has announced the sudden death of agency co-founder Carole Blake.
The agency said yesterday (26th): "It is with huge sadness that we must share the news that our beloved mentor, colleague and friend Carole Blake died last night. The loss of such an incredible woman so soon is not something any of us feel prepared for, but we are grateful that she lived so fully to the last, and that she died swiftly and painlessly, on being readmitted to hospital last night, with Julian [Friedmann] by her side."
Discovering New Talent Through #WriteNow
huffingtonpost.co.uk – Wednesday October 26, 2016
A couple of weeks ago I was a guest on BBC Asian Network radio to talk about Penguin Random House’s new initiative to find, mentor and publish new writers from communities under-represented on the UK’s bookshelves.
The WriteNow scheme aims to find and publish new writers who are “under-represented in books and publishing”. Targeted groups are writers from socio-economically marginalised backgrounds, writers who come from LGBTQ (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans, Queer) or BAME (Black, Asian, Minority Ethnic) communities, or writers with a disability.
Stride magazine invites submissions
firstwriter.com – Thursday October 20, 2016
Stride magazine is inviting writers to submit two or three short poems or prose poems, in the body of an email. All copyright remains with authors.
Writers are requested not to send biographical details or lists of previous publications; rhyming doggerel or shaggy dog stories masquerading as poems; or previously published work.
If you are interested in writing short, opinionated but informed reviews of poetry books (which will be sent to you) please contact the editor by email.
Preditors & Editors seeks new caretaker
firstwriter.com – Wednesday October 19, 2016
The renowned site "Preditors & Editors" is seeking a new caretaker.
The site has been helping writers discriminate between scams, duds, and genuine opportunities since 1997, but much of the information has, in the site's own words, become "stale and outdated", and the listings have now been removed until they can be updated by a new caretaker.
Irish publishing body says not paying writers is uncommon
irishtimes.com – Tuesday October 18, 2016
The organisation that represents the publishing industry in Ireland has said the non-payment of authors is not widespread in the books trade.
Liberties Press publisher Séan O’Keeffe has admitted a lot of authors and a small number of former staff have not been paid. He has apologised and said that the best way for them to get their money is for him to continue in business.