Notes on publishing II: Midnight Vengeance
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Writers as the Other 1%:
Sure puts things in perspective.
Hm, I thought it was ever thus. Remember Snoopy always getting rejection letters?
When one considers that the 1% of submissions that get published easily overwhelm the number of people interested in reading them, glutting the market with stories, it seems that perhaps 1% is a bit too generous.
For those of you interested in acquiring the near-mythical tome, Codex Seraphinianus by Luigi Serafini, good news! It's been reprinted and it's now available ...
In 2006, a revised, relatively inexpensive (89 Euros/120USD) edition, with new illustrations and a "preface" by the author, was released in Italy:
Milano: Rizzoli, 2006, 384 pp., ISBN 88-17-01389-7;
Milano: Rizzoli, 2008, 384 pp.
Bibliophiles takes note.
Andrew Wylie, super-agent, is more bullish on the future of publishing than you'd think:
Andrew Wylie, super-agent, has royally screwed over a leading translator. Here are a few accounts of what happened. Mr Wright's account is, quite understandably, emotionally charged:
http://www.complete-review.com/saloon/#jm2 ("Translation tribulations: forthcoming Alaa al-Aswany novel
The behaviour of Alaa al-Aswany and Andrew Wylie has been appalling. It has also emerged that the publisher, Knopf, engages translators under "work for hire provisions", meaning that, although they may credit the translator as such, the translator does not retain copyright over his/her own work. This is far from twenty-first century practice.
Fascinating. I had a friend who did a lot of translation work in Germany. For the amount of work and effort involved, the stipend you receive is downright minuscule.
Agreed. No one becomes a literary translator to get rich - it's a real labour of love. It's really shocking to see this highly talented, skilled and dedicated professional being abused in this fashion.
This kind of puts things into perspective:
Self-publishing and the Amazon behemoth:
Another good one from Gord.
This article talks about the changing publishing landscape, the vast changes the internet and its offshoots have spawned. Writers, even critically lauded, award-winning scribes, are finding it next to impossible to make ends meet:
One quote that caught my eye:
"Roughly speaking, until 2000, if you wrote a story, made a film or recorded a song, and people paid to buy it, in the form of a book, a DVD or a CD, you received a measurable reward for your creativity. Customers paid because they were happy to honour your creative copyright. When the internet began in the 1990s, many utopian dreams of creating an open society, where information would be free for all, sprang into prominence. Wikipedia, for instance, is the child of such dreams. Today, Wikipedia is appealing to its users for subscriptions."
The state of publishing/writing, as discussed at the recent Association of Writers and Writing Programs conference in Seattle:
>13 CliffBurns: - I can honestly say that the only thing that article taught me is that some people have jobs with good perks.
>15 CliffBurns: - I already knew that and I also know I'm not one of them. Beyond that I can't be certain of knowing anything.
"I can't be certain of knowing anything."
Now you sound like Spinoza...or Andre Breton. Too clever for me at eight in the morning.
Eight in the morning? What are you talking about? It's now almost 4 in the afternoon.
The next literary great--read this and despair, folks:
Just learned that the Winter, 2014 issue of Canada's venerable literary magazine DESCANT will be the last.
End of an era.
The rise of mass market paperbacks:
(A little piece of book-related history, courtesy Gord.)
Ursula LeGuin, on Amazon bookselling and the "BS" mentality:
Smart, smart, lady.
(Thanks for this, Gord)
Books to look forward to in the second half of 2015:
Booker Prize nominations announced:
One of my favourite alternative presses, Verso Books, is offering its entire catalog at 50% off until the end of the year:
Their roster of authors includes names like Tariq Ali, Slavoj Zizek and other luminaries of the Left.
Support a great press and find a book for the radical on your Christmas list...
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