Archive | Publishing

Best Book Trailer I’ve Seen

mrs peregrines home for peculiar childrenI produce TV and I write book reviews for Barnes and Noble, and I understand what goes into production and what it takes to make a video about a book. It’s not easy; in fact, counting cars as they enter the car wash can sometimes be far more interesting than watching one of these book trailers. Many of them present no more information than dissolving from one stock photo to the next and then offering up the title. They certainly don’t make me think, “I must stop what I’m doing right this second and click the buy button.” That changed when I viewed the book trailer for ‘Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children.” I was interested, surprised, afraid and most of all curious. Curious enough …

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Are the publishers at Bloomsbury Racists?

magic-book-white_320Last July I wrote a post about the book “Liar” by Justine Larbalestier.  Her young adult novel was the story of a young African American teenager named Micah, yet the book cover featured a white girl.  If you read my previous post you’ll understand more fully why the marketing ‘geniuses’ at Bloomsbury felt it was necessary to put a white girl on the cover.

The point of my previous post was to question whether we were cultivating racism in young readers by not accurately representing a multi-cultural book and instead white washing covers so they sell.  After multiple outcries across the blogosphere Bloomsbury was shamed into changing the cover to more accurately represent  the protagonist Micah. The dust settled, the smoke cleared and publishing went …

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Are Facebook and Twitter reliable sources for professional journalists?

huffingtonpost-logoIf you’re registered on any social networking site you can and will be found by someone who wants to find you.  In this case that someone could be a ‘journalist’ trying  to corroborate or enhance their story.

For example, when Tiger Woods’ infidelity scandal was front page news, everyone weighed in on it including The Huffington Post.  The headline of their article, Susie Ogren: Tiger Woods Took Ecstasy, Hoped To ‘Get Me Into Bed‘  was enough to make anyone click and read – I did.  Once reading I discovered there wasn’t much fact to this supposed fiction.  In fact, the article was written by The National Enquirer.  In fact, Susie Ogren and Tiger Woods didn’t have sex.  In fact, the reporter searched Facebook to …

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Are we cultivating racism in young readers?


liar-usThere’s a controversy brewing over a new Young Adult book about to be released in the US entitled “Liar.” The book, written by Australian author Justine Larbalestier is about a black teenager named Micah. However, the cover art, beautiful as it is, is of a white girl with long straight hair. The cover art bears no resemblance to the story at all. While ‘investigating’ this controversy – I wondered if we’re cultivating racism in the way we sell and market books?

The author states in her blog, I never wanted a girl’s face on the cover. Micah’s identity is unstable. She spends the book telling different version of herself. I wanted readers to be free to imagine her as they wanted.

But the art …

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twitterature2Don’t have time to read Shakespeare? To busy to get through Ulysses? Schedule too tight to get through Dante? No worries, you can get the hyper cliff notes version from Twitterature.

What is Twitterature? Well it’s from the root word Twitter – a micro-blogging site that allows you to speak your mind, discuss your views and give your opinions in 140 characters or less. With such a small window, you’ve got to be brief, to the point, and it helps if you’re clever with the written word. There are thousands of people who are becoming experts at the art of the tweet. But nowhere has the twitter concept been taken to the reductio ad absurdum as when two University of Chicago college freshmen …

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21st Century Classrooms


arnoldCalifornia’s Governor is leading the way in the digital textbook evolution. Whether you’re in college and have to purchase your textbooks, or you’re in middle and high school and the state pays for them – textbooks aren’t cheap. According to the California Governor’s website, “The average textbook costs about $75 to $100 per student.  For a school district with about 10,000 high school students, the use of free digital textbooks in just science and math classes could save up to $2 million dollars.”

While the switch from paper to digital is a money saver – what gets me excited is the ability to keep students current in a world that changes minute to minute.  Providing students digital information allows them to have the most current …

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Some Girls Bite by Chloe Neill



Some Girls Bite by Chloe Neill
Publisher: Penguin
4 Stars

There’s a fresh new voice in paranormal and that voice belongs to author Chloe Neill. She’s penned the first of her Chicagoland Vampire Novels entitled Some Girls Bite.

I’d been in a reading ‘slump’ so I was very happy to pick up a book that made me want to turn the pages. The author has created an interesting vampire mythology and a heroine who has spunk and daring, she’s kick ass without the hard edges.

Set in contemporary Chicago, vampires who have been around for a very long time have finally ‘come out’ presenting a face of wealth, sophistication, power and civility making a very vocal statement that they are here and plan to …

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BEA Digital Evolution or Revolution?


tina_brownThe Book Expo of America’s CEO roundtable discussion hosted by Co-Founder and Editor-in-Chief of the Daily Beast Tina Brown was held to a standing room only crowd wanting some answers from a panel consisting of who’s who in publishing. The panel included Brian Murray of HarperCollins Publishers Worldwide, Carolyn Reidy of Simon & Schuster, John Sargent of Macmillan, and David Steinberger of Perseus Books Group. Ms. Brown’s opening remarks likened the current digital explosion to the industrial revolution. She stated, “The publishing industry is experiencing volcanic changes calling for major re-thinking and restructuring. Publishers today must reinvent the wheel while still publishing great books. They are faced with fewer and fewer places to talk about and promote books because of the collapse of newspapers.” How’s …

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HarperStudio Announces New E-Book Pricing Policy

Straight from HaperStudio press release:

HarperStudio announced its experiment in e-book pricing and “bundling” of formats. In response to such proponents of “free” as Chris Anderson and Seth Godin, HarperStudio’s e-books will be free to anyone who agrees to review the book on Twitter. These short reviews, which must be 140 characters or less (known as “tweets” in Twitter-lingo), must be sent within two weeks of receiving the free e-book. Furthermore, if a consumer sends more than ten “tweets” about a HarperStudio e-book, that person will receive a free copy of the hardcover, signed by the author. Finally, if the consumer tweets more than fifty times about a HarperStudio book, that person will be taken to lunch by either Seth Godin or Chris …

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Books, the new way

Books are changing.  It’s a fact.  And that’s the beauty of the new media.  If you can dream it, you can make it happen.  The technology exists or can be created so any illusion can be realized  That is certainly true for books.  There’s the obvious e-book whether you read it on your computer, your e-reader or your phone, you’re never far away from a good read.  But books are becoming much more than words on a page sandwiched between a front and back cover.  Witness The Amanda Project

When the full website launches in June 2009 it will feature the book, Invisible I, by Melissa Kantor, published by HarperCollins.

According to their website, The Amanda Project is an interactive, collaborative fictional mystery for

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