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  • Bookseller redux banner

    Each Monday, here on Editor's Corner, I run through the latest issue of the Bookseller magazine and pick out the bits and pieces of book industry news that catch my eye.

    This quick round-up of book stuff is mainly culled from the Bookseller magazine (Friday January 15 issue):

    • the book trade "gave away £3.7bn in discounts in the Noughties... with the average discount creeping up from 16.4% in 2001 to 24.7% last year"
    • publishers "have been largely unfazed by the extreme weather experienced across the country since Christmas... publishers said it was 'business as usual'"
    • two million "electronic gift cards are to be sent out by National Book Tokens after the launch date of 1st February was announced last week"
    • Bloomsbury "is launching Jon McGregor's third novel Even the Dogs in a new format for UK literary fiction which it is calling 'bendyback'. The bendyback is mid-way between hardcover and paperback, witha very thin board binding (0.42mm) and a cover design printed onto a 150gsm linen. This firm but flexible style of binding is popular in Europe, and in Germany is called a 'smartcover'"
    • authors "dealing with the challenge of lower advances are facing a second economic blow as freelance journalism takes a sustained hit"
    • Random House "is proposing to close its Transworld Publishers Distribution Centre in Wellingborough, Northamptonshire. The centre's 30 employees were told of the proposal earlier this week and will now enter a period of consultation"
    • paperbacks "felt the pinch in 2009 with sales of the top 100 paperbacks published during the year slumping by 13.8%. The top 100 accounted for 7.6% of all book sales last year, worth just over 8.4%m. However, in 2008 the top 100 has sales worth 97.5%"
    • the ongoing recession "failed to stop 'premium publishing' books selling, with sales almost doubling year on year..." Katie Bond, publicity director at Bloomsbury, said: "Very high price, higher end objects are designed very well and they are reaching out to the traditional audience and also going to another audience who are interested in the gorgeousness of the book"
    • Bloomsbury "is talking to 'a number of UK publishers' about participation in its digital library initiative, Bloomsbury Library Online"
    • Val McDermid "has won this year's Crime Writers Association (CWA) Cartier Diamond Dagger Award"
  • Bookseller redux banner

    Each Monday, here on Editor's Corner, I run through the latest issue of the Bookseller magazine and pick out the bits and pieces of book industry news that catch my eye.

    This quick round-up of book stuff is mainly culled from the Bookseller website:

    • Aberdeen Library closures halted: "Plans to close four Aberdeen libraries have been put on hold by the city's local authorities, according to a report in the Aberdeen Press and Journal..."
    • O'Brien, H&H team up with Kelloggs: "Independent Irish firm The O'Brien Press has teamed up with cereal manufacturer Kellogg's and bookseller Hughes & Hughes to encourage reading through a 'Storytime' promotion...."
    • Google apologises to Chinese writers for scanning books: "Google has issued a public apology to Chinese writers and admitted that it scanned books under Chinese copyright for its Google Books digital library project... A statement made by Asia-Pacific head of Google Books, Erik Hartmann, said 'Through the discussions and communications of recent months, it is our understanding that our communications with Chinese writers have not been good enough... Google is willing to apologise to Chinese authors..."
    • Disability award scouts for nominees: "Publishers are being urged to nominate themselves for the JISC TechDis Publisher Lookup Award for Accessibility, which recognises those who have taken 'conscious steps to improve their service for disabled customers'..."
    • Inaugural Pat Kavanagh Award presented: "Jonathan Holt has been awarded the inaugural Pat Kavanagh Award, which is presented annually to the most outstanding student on the (MA) Creative Writing at Goldsmiths, University of London..."
    • Viking acquires Loss of Innocence: "Viking has bought the rights to book which describes England in 1914, on the eve of the outbreak of the First World War... 'England's Loss Of Innocence' by Mark Bostridge looks at England shortly before the outbreak of the war and the opening months of the conflict. The Penguin imprint will publish the title at the end of 2013..."
    • The book trade: "will weather the recession, with digital and a resurgent independent sector providing the best opportunities for incremental sales in 2010, according to leading industry figures polled by The Bookseller..."
    • Google's superphone: "Internet giant Google unveiled what it has insisted on calling a 'superphone'... with commentators suggesting that the Nexus One has 'raised the bar' when compared with Apple's iPhone. An 'unlocked' version of the device is available immediately to UK enthusiasts, with Nokia to launch a subsidised version in the Spring..."
  • Bookseller redux banner

    Each Monday, here on Editor's Corner, I run through the latest issue of the Bookseller magazine and pick out the bits and pieces of book industry news that catch my eye.

    This quick round-up of book stuff is mainly culled from the Bookseller website:

    • Book sales suffer marginal decline in 2009: "Book sales fell by just half a percent in 2009, confirming many early-year predictions from within the trade that the cheap price of books would offer resistance to the recession. But sales in high street bookshops suffered more serious falls over the year..."
    • C4 reveals Book Show list: "Sarah Waters, Nick Hornby and The Wire writer George Pelecanos are among the authors of the 10 titles chosen for the inaugural series of Channel 4's The TV Book Club..."
    • Fraser receives New Year CBE: "Helen Fraser, former managing director of Penguin has been awarded a CBE in the Queen's New Years Honours List. Fraser joins authors including Dick King-Smith and Lauren Child who also received recognition..."
    • Union to hold 'People's Inquiry' into libraries: "Public sector union UNISON is to hold a People's Inquiry into the public library service in the New Year. The event, to be held at the British Library on 11th February 2010, will hear evidence from library staff and users on topics including potential threats to the service and issues affecting staff..."
    • Google French fine could be increased, claims lawyer: "Google could be fined considerably more on appeal than the €300,000 (£267,000) in damages it has been ordered to pay the La Martiniere group for digitising copyrighted books without permission, according to La Martiniere's lawyer Yann Colin..."
  • Bookseller redux banner

    Each Monday, here on Editor's Corner, I run through the latest issue of the Bookseller magazine and pick out the bits and pieces of book industry news that catch my eye.

    This quick round-up of book stuff is culled from the pages of last Friday's 18th December issue and via the Bookseller website:

    • deferring publication "of e-books could play into the hands of Amazon, senior trade observers have warned. The warning comes as authors and publishers get ready to face off over e-book royalty rates, after the Society of Authors said digital royalty rates should be 'much higher' than the current 15%-25% level, rising to 75% or 85% of receipts in some circumstances"
    • publishers "could receive good cheer by Christmas Eve with the book market only 0.5% behind the previous year's figures"
    • Hachette UK appeared "in the high court [18th December] in a bid to stop Borders selling further books and obtain payment for stock that has already been sold"
    • the Publishers Association (PA) is "planning a number of improvements to the copyright infringement portal next year, which now has 52 publishers using it"
    • the number of "independents trading in the United Kingdom has dropped by more than 20% over the past decade"
    • TV producer and writer "Daisy Goodwin will chair the 15th Orange Prize for Fiction judging panel"
    • Random House "has launched a Facebook application enabling users to read free chapters and share their favourite books"
    • advances "for some literary fiction debuts have dropped to as little as £500, according to agents and publishers"
    • the "economic downturn, the stellar success of Dan Brown, and a particularly competitive fiction market have hit many of the autumn's big names, with authors showing sharp drops in sales of their new novels over comparable 2008 and earlier titles"
    • John Wiley & Sons "has signed a deal with Scribd to market and sell e-books, including the For Dummies series and Frommers travel guides"
  • Bookseller redux banner

    Each Monday, here on Editor's Corner, I run through the latest issue of the Bookseller magazine and pick out the bits and pieces of book industry news that catch my eye.

    This quick round-up of book stuff is culled from the pages of last Friday's 11th December issue and via the Bookseller website:

    • Stephenie Meyer and Guinness World Records 2010 "have been declared the big winners of this Christmas but Jamie Oliver and Peter Kay are the biggest turkeys... Jamie's America was held as one of the biggest disappointments, with sales failing to match last year's success of his Ministry of Food"
    • Borders UK "administrator MCR is facing growing pressure from publishers, which are still seeking to establish retention of title (ROT) claims two weeks after the beleagured retailer went into administration"
    • independents "appear set for a respectable 2009, with flat year-on-year sales amid a declining book market"
    • the "BBC has denied Lonely Planet parent BBC Worldwide is up for sale after the government said it expects the BBC to look more widely at options for its commercial arm"
    • discount chain "The Works, which plunged into administration last year, has had its most successful trading year earning a profit of £3m"
    • serial deals "have declined by as much as a tenth in the last two to three years, adding further pressure to parts of the non-fiction book world"
    • a "group of London librarians have expressed strong concerns about a proposal to consolidate London's library services into four or five 'regions'... Librarians said their services to the public would be compromised by the plan, that shared services would be 'sprawling and inflexible' and that a 10% reduction in specialist/professional staff (375 jobs in total) would 'undermine' the profession"
    • John Blake "is publishing a book by true crime author Gary King that will 'tell the whole story of the twisted murder case' behind the death of British student Meredith Kercher"
    • academic bookseller and library supplier "Lindsay & Croft will be merged into Blackwell's Book Services business"
    • Jamie Oliver's "independently developed '20 Minute Meals' iPhone App could well top 100,000 units, according to App publisher Jason Dunne"
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