Morning Coffee – 21 April 2015

CC0o0iPWgAA8E3_ Here are 5 stories to read this morning.

P.S. See the comments for more information on the book excerpt, and why it might not mean what you think.

About Nate Hoffelder (11472 Articles)
Nate Hoffelder is the founder and editor of The Digital Reader: "I've been into reading ebooks since forever, but I only got my first ereader in July 2007. Everything quickly spiraled out of control from there. Before I started this blog in January 2010 I covered ebooks, ebook readers, and digital publishing for about 2 years as a part of MobileRead Forums. It's a great community, and being a member is a joy. But I thought I could make something out of how I covered the news for MobileRead, so I started this blog."

9 Comments on Morning Coffee – 21 April 2015

  1. I wonder do authors have so little control over the books they write? If he wants his book to be read only on paper, why did he publish it as ebook? If the book I found on Amazon is the same – it costs $30 – I’d be pretty pissed to pay that much and read this first sentence.

    • Most likely, he didn’t publish it.
      He simply gave it to an agent, who for a perpetual 15% cut of the author’s book revenue found a publisher willing to publish it and, without necessarily being a contract lawyer or an IP lawyer (neither is required to be an agent) “negotiated” a deal for a payday loan (called an advance) against a royalty of 17% (or half of that under a deep discount clause, if sold for half the list price). He got a third of the loan 90 days after the contract was signed, a third six months later when the publisher decided he wasn’t going to change his mind and ask for the first third back, and the rest three to six months after the book is published, usually two years after signing but often as much as three years.
      As to the reason for the ebook edition?
      After signing the contract, the author has no legal say in editing, cover art, release date or format and if he asked for a print-only deal he would have no deal. Publishers don’t do print-only deals anymore, not even for Stephen King; there’s not enough profit in print these days. Oh, he could have found a boutique publisher like the one in the Wikert piece but that would’ve meant much lower sales and a lower loan to live off until the next book, which he is probably contractually require to offer to his current publisher without guarantee of acceptance or even a window of presumed rejection.

      As Wikert suggested, trying to live by last century’s rules in the 21st doesn’t usually end well.

      In this particular case, I expect he already got what his attitude deserves.

  2. It’s a novel written in the first person. If you read a novel about a serial killer told from the killer’s point of view do you jump to the conclusion that the author too is a serial killer?

  3. Is this the book? Book of Numbers: A Novel? Looks like a meta-novel to me, and it looks like the BOOK is the narrator, and of course a paper book would have a reason to be jealous of an ebook. So there’s that.

    • I was told on Twitter that is the book, yes.

    • Yeah, I caught that.
      It is just another bit of post-modern litfic.
      And for that audience, opening with an anti ebook statement is just stoking the fire.
      And a proper warning to everybody else. Especially anybody checking out the ebook sample.
      Now, ideally, the story would only be out in print to completely satisfy the audience but even for litfic pbook-only doesn’t fly anymore.

  4. And that’s also a book I would never have known about without publicity that just got preordered.

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