TALE OF THE WEEK
(Week by week stories published on our front page
Friday June 6th - (Appropriately D-Day) - OUR NEW SHOPPING CART
Finally we have our all singing, all dancing 'Shopping Cart', allowing 24/7 purchasing of all our books in whatever published formats are available. Now you can navigate all over the site adding any books to the cart. You can add multiple copies of paperbacks and hardbacks, as well as single copies of e-books. Pay for them via our secure online facility, instantly download any e-books purchased and have the paperbacks/hardbacks dispatched within 72 hours. For full details on how it works please visit our BookShop
Friday 30th May - DEMOCRATIC PUBLISHING
For anyone visiting this site who is really only looking for a mainstream publishing contract, you might like to take a look at X-Book Democratic Publishing which has just opened its doors. It's a novel concept akin to submitting a synopsis and sample chapter to the trade houses, but with one big difference. You load your own synopsis and sample on their website yourself and then persuade your friends to visit the site, read your work and others then vote for their preference via a small monetary pledge. The book which has accumulated the most 'votes' when a pre-determined target figure is reached is then automatically selected for publication and given the full mainstream treatment. So instead of some faceless person at the trade house having the ultimate say in whether or not your work is suitable, its entirely down to the voting public. Sounds a neat idea to us! Go and check it out.
Tuesday 20th May - INDIANA JONES AND THE KINGDOM OF THE CRYSTAL SKULL
The release of Hollywood blockbuster, Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull has given a boost to June Austin and her book Genesis of Man,. University students in the United States in particular have discovered the link between June's book and the new Harrison Ford movie and are now raving about the book. June has a long standing fascination with these beautiful objects, as guardian of several skulls herself.
Her book, originally published in 2006, began life as a thesis on crystal skulls when she was studying crystal therapy in 2001. The more June began to write and research, the more links she began to find between the skulls and other areas of interest, until it became obvious that this was to be a book, linking all the different subjects together.
Meanwhile Martin has been doing the rounds of magazine and radio interviews during the last week or so, including amongst others, ABC Australia and Kerrang Radio.
4th May 2008 - COACHING THE COACH BECOMES AN OFFICIAL FOOTBALL ASSOCIATION HANDBOOK
Whilst Martin Baum's To Be Or Not To Be Innit continues to occupy the dizzy heights of the UK's best seller lists, we must also recognise the amazing achievement of Richard Seedhouse whose book Coaching the Coach has been adopted as an official training manual for level 1 soccer coaches. It is now listed on the Football Association learning website as such.
The book is recommended throughout by the FA, who have sent out their latest bulletin to all officially registered coaches in England, including information leaflets on only two coaching books they endorse, one of which is Coaching The Coach.
Richard has also occupied some best seller spots on Amazon and is currently in the top 10 in Skills and Coaching and Training and Coaching (He often occupies the top spots, depending on Amazon's hourly update). WH Smiths have also expressed interest in stocking this item and a review appeared in 'School Sport Magazine' which is distributed to most schools throughout the UK. The author also gave an interview about the book to www.soccertutor.com which is available to listen to here.
This only goes to show that self-published authors can take on the traditional publishing establishment and win. The world is slowly changing for the better. Well done Richard and Martin - even more respect!
25th April 2008 - MARTIN BAUM'S YOOF-SPEAK GUIDE TO SHAKESPEARE 'GOES LARGE'!
The story of the week has to be our very own Martin Baum the author of To Be or Not to Be Innit. His book, which is the 'Yoof-speak Guide to Shakespeare' has suddenly 'gone large' and articles about the book have appeared in almost every national newspaper in the country and papers all over the world from Christchurch, New Zealand to Cape Town, South Africa and even in GQ Magazine.
Stemming from an article in the Bournemouth Echo the story has been taken up by UK daily papers, The Daily Telegraph (Front page and Leader), Daily Mail, The Sun, The Daily Mirror and the Daily Star. Martin has also done telephone interviews on The BBC World Service, Radio Five and on BBC TV Scotland. Martin appeared live on Breakfast TV on BBC1 on Saturday morning (26th), and the book was even part of the hourly news broadcasts throughout the day on BBC national radio stations. Google searches show bloggs and articles multiplying by the dozen hourly. Our publication appears to have started something of a phenomena!!!! It has even been broadly welcomed by The Royal Shakespeare Company whose comments were reported on the BBC Website.
Martin has something of a busy week ahead with interest from 'The Graham Norton' and 'Paul O'Grady Shows' and radio interviews already lined up for Spain, Ireland and lots of local Radio starting with Radio Cambridgeshire.
The book is now, as of Friday, a core stock item at Waterstones's, who will stock it in all their branches.
'Well good' Martin - Respect!!!!! Who says self-published authors can't make it to the premier league!
1st April 2009 - AMAZON REFUSE TO SELL POD BOOKS NOT PRODUCED 'IN HOUSE'!
Press reports have started to emerge that Amazon.com are pulling the most incredible stunt, which unfortunately we can now confirm as true.
In 2005 they bought a Dutch POD production company called BookSurge, which operates under a very different business (and incompatible) model to the distribution system operated by Authors OnLine and most POD publishers. It would now appear that Amazon have flexed big brothers muscles and is insisting it will no longer sell Self-Published Print On Demand books, unless they use the printing facilities supplied by Booksurge. This directly threatens the livelihood of all independent POD companies and major printers such as Lightning Source.
As you can probably imagine this has caused more than a major row and Amazon.com were threatening to switch off the buy buttons to books produced by the big American players such as Lulu (itself a printer) and iUniverse/AuthorHouse unless they signed up to this by 1st April.
This is in our opinion a restriction of trade and akin to TESCO saying it won't sell any bread unless it is manufactured by their in house bakers. We believe that such a move would be illegal under British Monopoly laws but Anti Trust Laws in the USA would appear to permit it. We cite Microsoft as case in point with a virtual stranglehold over most of the world's computers! It must be stopped!! Such actions are absolutely outrageous for a company with over 2% of the worlds booktrade and 75% of Internet book sales. Its simply not on Amazon!!
To read more go to:
TALE OF THE WEEK CONTINUED
HOT OFF THE PRESS (2nd April)
Amazon have now issued an official stement which although leaving many unanswered questions it appears they are doing a certain amount of back peddling as per this article posted on PaidContent.org. and phx-corportate-ir.net
Also Lightning Source have now issued a statement of their own which we reproduce below is full.
Lightning Source has been following the recent press coverage and discussions about Amazon.com
and BookSurge. We are aware of the concern this is causing the publishing community. The issue centers around Amazon.com tying the availability of your books and terms of sale at Amazon.com to the production of books at the Amazon.com subsidiary BookSurge, specifically requiring you to use BookSurge in order to sell on Amazon.
Like you, we are very concerned about any conduct that would serve to limit a publisher's choice in supply chain partners and to negatively impact the cost of your products to consumers. We believe that choice and selection of best of class services are critical to the long term success of publishers and a vibrant book market.
Lightning Source continues to provide the highest quality digital on demand print and distribution services for every one of our customers. All your titles continue to be available to all of our channel partners, including Amazon.com, with immediate availability for shipment within 24 hours.
We are committed to providing you with the best of class quality product and fastest distribution service in the market, and will continually work to develop new channels and new offerings.
Lightning Source will continue to monitor this situation and let you know when we have more information.
J. Kirby Best
President & CEO
Lightning Source Inc.
22-03-2008 - POD PUSHES BOOKS TO NEW HIGH
The number of books published in the UK skyrocketed to the highest level ever last year, driven by an increase in print-on-demand titles.
According to Nielsen BookScan, the number of frontlist titles (books with both an ISBN and a 2007 publication date) sold last year hit 118,602, up 36% from 2006 (86,984). The amount of backlist titles (books with a pre-2007 publication date) sold last year also dramatically increased, up to 758,125 from 590,464 in 2006, a jump of 28%.
Andre Breedt, Nielsen BookScan research and development analyst, said: "There have been more frontlist titles sold and more individual titles sold than ever before. What we are really beginning to see is the effect of books never going out of print with print on demand."
Breedt said the stark rise was also down to more retailers reporting sales, while publishers are classifying books better and assigning ISBNs to products such as maps for the first time. The 2007 frontlist number is almost double the figure in 2004 (63,695), while the 883,725 titles sold overall in 2007 is a 59% leap from 2004 (553,306).
"What you see here is a reflection of a vibrant and healthy society," said Bloomsbury m.d. Richard Charkin. "The principle is that it is simply getting cheaper to publish, but more costly to market to the high street."
Penguin UK c.e.o. Peter Field agreed. "If there are 120,000 books published, so many of them are p.o.d. or academic monographs, which just won't make it to the high street. For trade publishers, we each make decisions to publish based on what we can market and sell into the trade."
Duncan Enright, Elsevier's UK publishing director, said he was not surprised by the rise in p.o.d. He added: "Print costs are historically low and p.o.d. is so much easier to produce. If all these books are doing good things for the readers, then I don't think it is a bad thing. I would say that Elsevier itself is not publishing significantly more, we're just making the books available in slightly different formats."
22-02-2008 - LIFE IMITATING ART?
Anybody who has read Richard Armour's novel 'The Habit' might just recognise this real life 'plot' reported in the media on February 15th. Was, we ask. a copy of Richard's book found in the man's possession?
Detectives hunting a serial rapist who picks up victims in a London taxi have arrested a man, Scotland Yard says.
The attacker - believed to have struck at least five times - pretends to have won the National Lottery before drugging and attacking his female passengers.
The attacker drives a black cab.
The attacker drives a black cab.
He asks the women to help celebrate his success before plying them with spiked glasses of champagne or wine and then abuses them in his cab.
Police say a man in his 40s has been arrested in south east London and is being questioned by detectives.
All the victims - aged between 17 and 33 - were picked up in a black cab in the London Bridge, Oxford Street, Tottenham Court Road and Kings Road areas before being subjected to lengthy ordeals. They had all spent the evening drinking with friends before being targeted.
Three of the assaults have been carried out over the last three months.
Detective Chief Inspector Tim Grattan-Kane, who is leading the investigation, said he believed there may be many more victims who have not come forward. He said all were taken to their destination after being raped.
It is thought the attacker may not be a legitimate black cab driver, but someone who leases it from a genuine cabbie.
Detectives began trawling through records of sex crimes since 2005 - when the first incident happened - after an incident earlier this month led them to believe a serial attacker was on the loose.
The rapist varies his stories, sometimes saying he has won money on the Lottery, at a casino or on the horses. And the value of his win also changes - from ÃƒÆ’Ã†â€™ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã…Â¡ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â£1,000 to ÃƒÆ’Ã†â€™ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã…Â¡ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â£50,000. On one occasion, he drugged a victim with tablets after she complained of a headache.
The driver has been described as white, in his late 30s or early 40s with grey or brown hair which was spiky on top. Police said he had distinct bags under his eyes and a London accent.
This weeks tale is from Sky News' website
13-02-2007 - NORMAL ADOLESENCE by LILI HART
Up in the clouds, joyous and gay
Down in the dumps the very next day
New interests, new hobbies without any limits
Dropped just as fast, within a few minutes
Young minds in revolt, hating authority
Can't wait to be free, to reach their majority
Intolerant, opinionated, knowing it all
Criticising their Elders with never a pall
Noisy and proud, restless and rude.
With their continually changing mood
Yet decent and generous, fair and kind
Though often and easily changing their mind
Capricious, emotional, quick, effervescent
The problems and trials of each adolescent!
02-02-2007 - WHAT WAS THAT ABOUT MONKEYS AND TYPEWRITERS?
Fourth Estate has signed up HollyÃƒÆ’Ã†â€™Ãƒâ€ Ã¢â‚¬â„¢ÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€¦Ã‚Â¡ÃƒÆ’Ã†â€™ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã…Â¡ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Âwood legend Cheeta the Chimp for a no-holds-barred memoir, Me Cheeta, this autumn. Cheeta was snatched from the Liberian jungle in 1932, and appeared alongside Johnny Weissmuller in "Tarzan the Ape Man".
In 1934's "Tarzan and His Mate" he famously stole the clothes from a naked Jane (Maureen OÃƒÆ’Ã†â€™Ãƒâ€ Ã¢â‚¬â„¢ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â¢ÃƒÆ’Ã†â€™Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â¢ÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€¦Ã‚Â¡ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â¬ÃƒÆ’Ã†â€™Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â¢ÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€¦Ã‚Â¾ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â¢Sullivan), who was swimming with Weissmuller. He went on to star alongside Bela Lugosi in the '50s, and finally quit the big screen after 1967's "Doctor DoÃƒÆ’Ã†â€™Ãƒâ€ Ã¢â‚¬â„¢ÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€¦Ã‚Â¡ÃƒÆ’Ã†â€™ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã…Â¡ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Âlittle" with Rex Harrison.
Cheeta, a.k.a. Jiggs, now lives in a Palm Springs retirement home, where he paints and plays the piano. Last year he celeÃƒÆ’Ã†â€™Ãƒâ€ Ã¢â‚¬â„¢ÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€¦Ã‚Â¡ÃƒÆ’Ã†â€™ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã…Â¡ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Âbrated his 75th birthday, making him by far the oldest chimp ever recorded.
Fourth Estate publishing director Nicholas Pearson bought world rights directly from Cheeta. Ecco is publishing the book in the US.
"Here we've got the real monkeyÃƒÆ’Ã†â€™Ãƒâ€ Ã¢â‚¬â„¢ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â¢ÃƒÆ’Ã†â€™Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â¢ÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€¦Ã‚Â¡ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â¬ÃƒÆ’Ã†â€™Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â¢ÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã…Â¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â¬ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚ÂÃƒÆ’Ã†â€™Ãƒâ€ Ã¢â‚¬â„¢ÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€¦Ã‚Â¡ÃƒÆ’Ã†â€™ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã…Â¡ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Âa great actor who is one of the few still alive from what was the golden age of HollyÃƒÆ’Ã†â€™Ãƒâ€ Ã¢â‚¬â„¢ÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€¦Ã‚Â¡ÃƒÆ’Ã†â€™ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã…Â¡ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Âwood. He saw it all. He had to act to save his life, literally. Others who fell by the wayside often ended up in the lab with the dogs, mice and rabbits."
The "funny, moving and searingly honest" book will cover Cheeta's struggle with drink and addiction to cigars, his breakthrough with radical new form of abstract painting "apeism", his relationship with his nightclub-performing grandson Jeeta, and his battle with diabetes.ÃƒÆ’Ã†â€™Ãƒâ€ Ã¢â‚¬â„¢ÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€¦Ã‚Â¡ÃƒÆ’Ã†â€™ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã…Â¡ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â
This weeks tale is from The Bookseller, story by Joel Rickett
25-01-2008 - THE ULTIMATE LITERARY ABSURBITY?
A story based on the Three Little Pigs fairy tale has been turned down by a government agency's awards panel as the subject matter could offend Muslims.
The digital book, re-telling the classic story, was rejected by judges who warned that "the use of pigs raises cultural issues".
Becta, the government's educational technology agency, is a leading partner in the annual Bett Award for schools.
The judges also attacked Three Little Cowboy Builders for offending builders.
The book's creative director, Anne Curtis, said the idea that including pigs in a story could be interpreted as racism was "like a slap in the face".
The CD-Rom digital version of the traditional story of the three little pigs, called Three Little Cowboy Builders, is aimed at primary school children.
But judges at this year's Bett Award said that they had "concerns about the Asian community and the use of pigs raises cultural issues".
The Three Little Cowboy Builders has already been a prize winner at the recent Education Resource Award - but its Newcastle-based publishers, Shoo-fly, were turned down by the Bett Award panel.
The feedback from the judges explaining why they had rejected the CD-Rom highlighted that they "could not recommend this product to the Muslim community".
They also warned that the story might "alienate parts of the workforce (building trade)".
The judges criticised the stereotyping in the story of the unfortunate pigs: "Is it true that all builders are cowboys, builders get their work blown down, and builders are like pigs?"
Ms Curtis said that rather than preventing the spread of racism, such an attitude was likely to inflame ill-feeling. As another example, she says would that mean that secondary schools could not teach Animal Farm because it features pigs?
Her company is committed to an ethical approach to business and its products promote a message of mutual respect, she says - and banning such traditional stories will "close minds rather than open them".
Becta, the government funded agency responsible for technology in schools and colleges, says that it is standing by the judges' verdict."Becta with its partners is responsible for the judging criteria against which the 70 independent judges, mostly practising teachers, comment. All the partners stick by the judging criteria," said a Becta spokesman. The reason that this product was not shortlisted was because "it failed to reach the required standard across a number of criteria", said the spokesman.
Becta runs the awards with the Besa trade association and show organisers, Emap Education.
Merlin John, author of an educational technology website which highlighted the story, warns that such rulings can undermine the credibility of the awards."When benchmarks are undermined by pedestrian and pedantic tick lists, and by inflexible, unhelpful processes, it can tarnish the achievements of even the most worthy winners.
"It's time for a rethink, and for Becta to listen to the criticisms that have been ignored for a number of years," said Mr John.
Story from BBC NEWS: http://news.bbc.co.uk/go/pr/fr/-/1/hi/education/7204635.stm
17-01-2008 -- WHERE DID THE WHITE MAN GO WRONG?
Native American Chief 'Two Eagles' was asked by a white government official, 'You have observed the white man for 90 years. You've seen his wars and his technological advances. You've seen his progress, and the damage he's done.'
The Chief nodded in agreement.
The official continued, 'Considering all these events, in your opinion, where did the white man go wrong?'
The Chief stared at the government official for over a minute and then calmly replied. 'When white man find land, Indians running it, no taxes, no debt, plenty buffalo, plenty beaver, clean water. Women did all the work, Medicine man free. Indian man spend all day hunting and fishing; all night making love.'
Then the chief leaned back and smiled. 'Only white man dumb enough to think he could improve system like that.'