The food- and retail-focused long Thanksgiving weekend continues with tomorrow's Small Business Saturday which is of special note to booklovers this year.
Due to an independent bookseller initiative called Indies First (suggested by Seattle bookseller Janis Segress, inaugurated by author Sherman Alexie, and supported by the ABA), a number of authors will be visiting bookstores, helping out the booksellers, recommending favorites, and chatting with customers.
For example, Madison, CT's R. J. Julia Booksellers is tapping the handselling skills of best-selling novelist Wally Lamb; poet and novelist Beth Ann Fennelly will be one of "acting booksellers" at Square Books in Oxford, MS; and George Bishop and Carolyn Kolb will be working at Octavia Books in New Orleans. Alexie will join Laurie Frankel and others at Queen Anne Book Company, where the idea was hatched.
Writing for the Association of Writers and Writing Programs' website, Roxane Gay poses eight questions. While she isn't explicit about her purpose, the queries seem constructed to help writers gain insight as to why they might not be further along in their writing careers than they'd like to be.
If your answer to her question "Are you willing to be critiqued and/or edited?" (#4) is "Yes," read this article about getting feedback on your novel. If your answer to #3 ("Is your writing ready to be submitted?") is "No," maybe you should consider hiring an editor to help you polish your work or a copyeditor to get rid of the typos (more about editorial services here).
The 2013 National Book Awards ceremony were held last night in New York City and James McBride took home the coveted prize for fiction for his novel, The Good Lord Bird. Read the complete list of 2013 National Book Award winners (as well as the finalists, longlists and judges) here.
Other awards bestowed were the Literarian Award, which Toni Morrison presented to to Maya Angelou, and the medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters, which was presented to E.L. Doctorow.
Read more about the details and history of the National Book Awards.
The 30th Annual Miami Book Fair International kicked off Sunday with an appearance by its Inaugural Author, the New York Times best-selling Dan Brown (Da Vinci Code, The Inferno). The festival prides itself on its multi-cultural focus and this year Spain is the celebrated country.
The book- and author-centric festivities run through this weekend and feature the annual street fair -- featuring more than 350 authors, 250 publishers and a Children's Alley -- begins this Friday 11/22 and runs through Sunday 11/24. For more information:
Read more about Miami Book Fair International and see a list of more book festivals.
Matthew Crawley to the rabid fans of Downton Abbey, Stevens now brings his award-winning talents to the haunting narration of Mary Shelley's monster classic from Audible.
The Frankenstein audiobook download is on sale now -- or free with an Audible trial membership. Listen to a sample of Matthew Crawley narrating Mary Shelley's Frankenstein here...
And have a monstrously fun Halloween!
Image: Getty Images Archive
Book publishing experts -- including yours truly -- contributed to this Daily Muse article: "The Secrets of Publishing: Expert Advice for Getting Your Books on the Shelves."
In addition to my thoughts, article author Laura Rossi Totten includes advice from a range of pros like bestselling authors Laura Zigman and Gina Barreca, the publishing experts from Tandem Literary, and more.
Read the Daily Muse article -- then don't forget to come back to About Book Publishing for more information about the book industry!
Image of Laura Rossi, courtesy of Laura Rossi Public Relations
The Man Booker Prize was awarded to New Zealand resident Eleanor Catton for her novel, The Luminaries. Catton is the youngest person to have ever won the prize and, at 848 pages, her novel is the longest.
As it comes with the tidy sum of £50,000 (about $80,000), the Man Booker Prize is among the richest literary prizes in the world. The 2013 Booker will be the last to include only citizens of the The British Commonwealth or The Republic Ireland as eligible for the prize, as it was announced last month that the 2014 Man Booker Prize will be open to all English-language novels published in Britain, regardless of nationality of the author.
Read more about the different literary prizes for authors.
Image: WPA / Getty Images Entertainment
The Frankfurt Book Fair opened its doors today, expecting its usual quarter-of-a-million-plus visitors to learn about forthcoming titles and explore the latest in the changing publishing landscape.
In his opening statement, Frankfurt Book Fair director Juergen Boos noted that "Technical standards - from payment systems to search algorithms - influence the way in which we read, and the things we know... they control our access to intellectual goods," noting that in order to maintain the diversity of what we read and publish, these standards need to be assessed and negotiated by the community of publishers and readers. They are tools that "Must be designed to serve people and their needs, not the other way around."
In that arena, according to media company Deusche Welle, "Many of the publishers, authors and sellers [like subsidiary rights representatives] attending will have their own ideas on some of the main themes of the fair: the challenges of online trading, the future of the traditional bookstore amid falling sales, and the opportunities and challenges presented by Internet companies with digital publishing in their sights."
The Frankfurt Book Fair runs through October 13. Visit the Frankfurter Buchmesse site.
Image courtesy of Frankfurt Book Fair / Peter Hirth
The final day of SIBA 2013 on Sunday kicked off with the Here's to Morrow (and HC Kids) a breakfast sponsored by HarperCollins, featuring emcee Doug Robinson of Eagle Eye Books in Atlanta GA; Tony Abbott, author of The Copernicus Legacy -- The Forbidden Stone; Stephanie Evanovich, author of Big Girl Panties; Joshilyn Jackson, author of Some Else's Love Story; and Sena Jeter Naslund, author of The Fountain of St. James Court.
The trade show continued for a half day where booksellers and authors continued to mingle with booksellers. At the Southern Belleview Daily booth, the group of blogger/authors -- like New York Times best-selling novelist and farmer Julie Cantrell ("Wednesday Julie") -- talked about Southern living and Southern writing.
Closing the show was a Moveable Feast of authors and signings.
Check out the remaining schedule 2013 Regional Independent Bookseller Association trade shows or read more about regional bookseller associations and their other activities in support of booksellers.
Photo left to right: author Tony Abbott; Judith Lafitte, co-owner, Octavia Books, New Orleans LA; author Joshilyn Jackson; Jill Hendrix, owner and manager, Fiction Addiction, Greenville, SC. Photo courtesy of Mary Beth Thomas.
Southern booksellers continue to gather for seminars, events and a trade show packed with a variety of authors and publishers talking books. Both regional publishers and members of the Big Five were present as well as authors with regional and national appeal. Here's some snapshots of the show floor.
Captions in order of photos but not not necessarily near the actual photo (blame WordPress):
University of North Carolina Press
Eric Svenson and Cecilia Helwig promote their upcoming favorite books at the HarperCollins booth
Jennifer Kowalski and Judy DeBerry staff the Hachette booth
Ann Salisbury and Sam "Russ" Adams from Mobile Alabama's Bienville Books
Marissa Curnuette and Carolyn Landry show one of their book picks
Author Jessica Handler and Lyn Roberts, General Manager of Square Books, Oxford, Mississippi
Photos by Valerie Peterson