Wednesday, February 10, 2016

ShadowHunter in Court: Sherrilyn Kenyon vs Cassandra Clare

Cassandra Clare's ShadowHunter series has clearly been a success, most recently with its release as a television series.  However there has been ongoing conflict between Clare and Kenyon as to how derivative the series is of the Kenyon's also illustrious (but less multi-media)  Dark-Hunter books.

I have not read either series and so cannot personally judge whether there is much evidence of direct copying.  But to me the case seems weak. Paranormal fantasy and romance is replete with tropes that are far from distinctive. Claims such as "Both feature symbols reminiscent of ancient ruins, angels, and crystals" are pretty laughable to anyone with even a passing familiarity with the genre.

The fact that the Shadow Hunters had previous been called Dark-Hunters and were referred to as having "marks" does suggest that the resemblance between the two works was initially a good deal closer. But on the other hand the fact that Kenyon has trademark rights to “Dark-Hunter”, “Dream-Hunter”, and “Were-Hunter” regardless of font or presentation strikes me as pretty damn outrageous. What next, a trademark claim for "were-wolf"?  (Although I assume dispensing with the hyphen would prevent one for being sued?)

If you have read these books I would love to know whether you think this suit has substance.  FWIW my only direct experience of either of them is watching the new ShadowHunters TV series and found it rather insipid.  But perhaps I am not the target audience.

 See also:

Monday, February 08, 2016

Creative Online / Vasko

An outfit called Creative Online Publishing Inc (a division of VaskoBooks) has been soliciting authors of romance.  They seem to be particularly angling for previously self-published authors. Creative Online offers an eyebrow-raising US$1000 advance for only your digital Apple (iBook store) rights.  Honestly, I just do not see how that adds up.

See also:

Tuesday, February 02, 2016

A Few New(ish) Places

Baronet Press, founded in 213,  is seeking erotic romance and BDSM fiction. The owner of the press is spanking-specialist author Casey McKay.

Dark Hollows Press, also founded in 2013, is seeking all genres of romance. The press is co-owned by author Shannon West and Michelle Williams.

Crimson Romance, founded in 2015, is seeking romantic suspense, contemporary, paranormal, historical, and spicy romance. Crimson is F&W Media's digital romance imprint.

Sunday, January 31, 2016

Yes, We Shall Have a Facebook Page

I know I am very late to the party here, but our Erotic Romance Publishers Facebook page has arrived.  I am coming up with ideas for things to do on the new page. 

One thing definitely on the cards is new release announcements for any books published in the previous 30 days. Please add them as a visitor post ad I shall aggregate them onto the new page weekly 

Other than that... I am open to suggestions.

Friday, January 29, 2016

Big Sky Press = Big Copyright Issue

As pointed out by aliceshortcake on Absolutewrite, Big Sky Press seems to have a very weak grasp of the idea of copyright.  Compare for example this (rather cheesy) shot of Jude Law with this book cover:

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Will Amazon start publically flagging poor quality ebooks?

There has been a lot of debate about this post which suggests Amazon is going to publically flag ebooks with technical errors and maybe even delist them starting on February 3rd.

Here is an email multiple authors report receiving from Amazon:

"Our shared goal is to provide the best digital reading experience for customers on Kindle. When customers contact us with quality issues in a book you published, we validate the issues and send them immediately to you to fix.
Starting February 3, 2016 we will begin showing customers a warning message on the Kindle store detail pages of books that contain several validated quality issues. We will remove this message for a book as soon as we receive the fixed file from you and verify the corrections -- typically within 2 business days.
We understand that even with the best quality controls, defects sometimes make it through. That's why we've limited this messaging to books with several issues. Books with more serious quality issues will continue to be suppressed from sale."
 As I read this, the process continues to be activated only by customer complaints.  So the only new step is that books under-going this process will be marked with a public warning about potential quality problems.  Annoying, but IMHO not a huge deal.

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

WTF South Carolina?

Okay, now I am pretty open about being a socialist pro-gun control pro-right-to-choose bleeding heart nouveau hippy.  But I live in America and I understand the deep traditions of personal freedom and the role of the private citizen as a check against tyranny. I am cool with the fact that people have different points of view about this stuff.  That said....

In South Carolina you do not have to register guns (a.k.a. yay, second ammendment!), but if this bill passes you will have to register if you want to practice any kind of journalism (a.k.a. fuck the first ammendment!).  This is  bonkers. Not to mention, unconsititutional.