Thursday, March 28, 2013

Goodreads bought out by the Evil Em... Amazon

Amazon is going to acquire Goodreads.  Amazon VP says "Amazon and Goodreads share a passion for reinventing reading".  Which baffles me.  Reading is reading. I wish people would stop trying to reinvent it and concentrate on enabling and promoting it.

MARKET: Books We Love

Books We Love accepts multiple genres but seems to have a focus on romance.

"Books We Love Ltd. is an electronic publisher of discriminating fiction."

Yeah, um, I'm not sure that's what they meant to say. The website is... a bit web 1.0

Friday, March 22, 2013

Wild Rose aquires Still Moments

Still Moments Press announced today that it has been acquired by The Wild Rose Press.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

More On Crossroads

There seems to be some genuine confusion as to whether the author or the tour organizer cancelled the tour in question (for more context, see the post below this one).  However there is no obvious evidence that any substantial work had been carried out to organize the tour. I do notice one thing that seems very clear.

This the the form the author filled out (click to enlarge).

This is the form the organizer says they filled out.

Notice the difference?

Vanishing Crossroads

Crossroads Review, formerly found here, has vanished.  As has their Facebook page and Google + profile, which at first suggested a deliberate disappearance. At Crossroads, paid reviews cost $50 and review blog tours ran $200-$700.As far as I can determine the site operated from late 2011 until early this month.

However, the main person behind Crossroads seems to be Jessica Porter, whose twitter account is still posting as of today and states "At the moment Contessa at the Crossroads is down so please find us over at The Witchy Contessa!"  Authors looking to follow up as to when/where/how they will get what they paid for should  monitor the new site "Witchy Contessa".

My advice to Jessica would be: if someone has paid you hundreds of dollars, it is wise to send them  updates and explanations about outages immediately to avoid suspicions that you might have cut and run.

Given the comment below, it seems according to one author she did in fact deliver neither a tour, nor a refund.  You can't cancel a service and keep the fee.

Saturday, March 09, 2013

"The Proud Wife" Vindicated

An unpublished author sued Harlequin on the assumption that an un-named Harlequin judge from an unspecified contest must have stolen ideas from her first chapter and synopsis for an unpublished manuscript.  The major allegedly original ideas from her manuscript found in the published title "The Proud Wife seem to be:
  • A rich husband
  • A red-haired wife
  • A miscarriage (the causes differ)
  • Estrangement of the marriage (the reasons differ), followed by reconciliation
  • A new pregnancy

These are, as Harlequin asserts "generic concepts such as scenes-a-faire, nondistinct characters, and common tropes in the romance genre".

The complaint was dismissed, with prejudice, stating: "A theme or trope that has long existed is not “expression” that the Copyright Act protects.".

The only result other than a lot of wasted time and money is probably that Harlequin editors will be less eager to donate their time and expertise to contests.

Europe wants to Save Women... from Porn

An upcoming vote on a non-binding but potentially influential EU resolution "on eliminating gender stereotypes in the EU" contains some rather problematic language.

Apparently it deems any and all porn to be demeaning to women, and considers banning porn to be the solution.  Because nothing empowers women like a ban on expressing sexuality.

Either the extremists of the feminist left and conservative right have annexed the center, or a hell of a lot of people didn't read this resolution very carefully until now (score one for the bloggers).

Full text here of the resolution here.

Wednesday, March 06, 2013

Hinky Hockey?

Stephani Hecht is the author of the Blue Line Hockey romance series, published by Extacy books.  The first book in the series came out at the beginning of 2011, and the 5th title, shown below, came out in May of the same year.

Why am I telling you this? you might ask. Well.

In a few days Silver Publishing is going to be releasing a Hockey-themed romance title, called Blue Line.  And here is the cover.

Yes, I know the underlying stock photo is not exclusive, but when you put it all together--this is not a good look.

Monday, March 04, 2013


The Romfest "Featured Editor" is an agent, which is interesting enough. But also an agent who seems to sell exclusively to smaller e-publishers such as Sweet Cravings, Soul Mate and Asrtaea.

The "slow books" movement

The latest brilliant idea for the anti-e-book crowd is to call themselves the "slow books movement".  This is modeled on the "slow food" movement which promotes locally sourced, high quality, relaxed dining over fast food.

The problem with this idea is... well... where do I start?

1) E-books are not poorer quality "junk" books.  They are just book in a digital form.  Largely the same ones that are also available in paperback. And e-book readers are not spotty oiks reading  purulent crap written at a Dick-and-Jane level of semi-literacy. The are just readers.  They just like books. Oh, and "literary" books are not the only kind of good books, FFS.

2) I agree that it is good to shop in local brick-and-mortar bookstores.  But I think it is equally great to buy a local author's e-book from an online store.  Both of these actions display support of the local cultural and economic community.

3) Treating e-books, e-book readers, and e-book writers as the enemy alienates a large sector of the reading public.  Specifically readers who are tech savvy, ethically aware, and high volume consumers of prose across genres and platforms.

In short: get a clue. E-book readers are not the problem.  Non-readers are. Are maybe some of them are being put off engaging with the book culture by the self-important, pseudo-intellectual nonsense being churned out by the neo-luddites of the book trade. People who only want to sell the right kind of books to the right kind of readers.  And don't give a flying fig what happens to the rest of us.

Well, keep it up chaps.  Pretty soon the feeling will be mutual.


Sunday, March 03, 2013

F/F for Fashion

Lesbian chic still seems to be going strong with in the leaked photoshoot Kate Moss and Rihanna did for V Magazine. Quite what clothing Kate Moss could be advertising here, well, I don't know....