Sunday, June 30, 2013

POC and Where Things Stand...

Roxane Gay
There's a lot to note here in this rather short post by Roxane Gay. POCs are people of color. The graph she offers says it all, although it isn't a "scientfic" study. That said, I respect Roxane Gay immensely and think she's a very good analyst of real life in the book world, and a straight shooter to boot.

Here's the main take away: nearly 90% of the books reviewed in the NYTimes are written by so-called Caucasians.

What I find interesting is not that this may be evidence of how few books are published by POCs; rather, what's interesting is what these numbers say about books the NYTimes feels are important. As Ms. Gay writes in her Rumpus piece: "...if you are a writer of color, not only do you face a steeper climb getting your book published, you face an even more arduous journey if you want that book to receive critical attention."

I personally don't really care how many books are published by people of color. There are plenty of

Friday, June 14, 2013

Thank You, Apple, for Going to Court Over E-Books | Talking Writing

Go to the online magazine, Talking Writing, to see my latest essay (co-written with TW Editor-in-Chief Martha Nichols). It's not just a re-hash of the pricing fixing case going on in NYC. We offer important insights for writers and readers everywhere about what this decision can mean for the future of books in America...

Thank You, Apple, for Going to Court Over E-Books | Talking Writing

Lead-in excerpt:

"E-book “price-fixing” has a scurrilous ring, as if a bunch of shadowy hoods in business suits have been deciding the fates of humble readers. But in April 2012, that’s exactly what the U.S. Department of Justice accused five of the six big publishers and Apple of doing with e-book prices.

To date, all the publishers—Hachette Book Group, HarperCollins, Penguin, Macmillan, and Simon & Schuster—have settled with the DOJ. (The “Big Six” of corporate publishing are now down to five; Random House is merging with Penguin.)

But when the publishers started settling last year, some with undue haste, an important opportunity was lost. We need a public discussion of the economics..." 

Go here for the full piece.

Friday, June 07, 2013

Vanessa Veselka and the Female Road Narrative

Vanessa Veselka (Click on her name)

Read the excellent essay called GREEN SCREEN: THE LACK OF FEMALE ROAD NARRATIVES AND WHY IT MATTERS by Vanessa Veselka. It's quite thought-provoking. See my comments at the end of the essay along with others. There's a lot of food for thought here for anyone concerned about women's issues, our broader culture, and the frontiers of fiction that await those who have the desire to expand our national narrative.

An excerpt of my comments:

"In the end, we are all lost souls on the road to nowhere. You can't write about that unless you are willing to embrace that. At least that's how I see everything from The Hobbit to Cormac McCarthy's The Road -- Huck, Ulysses, Ishmael, Ahab, Leopold Bloom, Japhy Ryder, Holden Caulfield on the run, etc. etc."

Thursday, June 06, 2013

Screwpulp .:. Free Books

Screwpulp .:. Free Books

While the corporate houses mess around about pricing, there are entrepreneurs doing quite innovative things with ebook and indie distribution. You can get dozens of books for FREE or practically nothing, all just in exchange for a little help promoting through your social networking system. This site should be #1 on every "How to Show Some Love to Your Neighborhood Writer" list. Check it out.

Get Your eBook Single Included in Thin Reads' Database - BookBaby Blog

Get Your eBook Single Included in Thin Reads' Database - BookBaby Blog

There's no doubt this is an interesting resource for writers, but I hope readers are paying attention to this opportunity too. Long reads are worth the effort and investment.