March 4, 2010
Macmillan (of the Amazon vs. Macmillan fame), will begin to publish e-books as a simultaneous release to newly published titles, says CEO John Sargent in a press release on the publisher’s website. Sargent states that the e-books will be available at a variety of prices.
In related news, The Atlantic online gets snippy about the “expenses” of publishing a hardcover book.
February 18, 2010
Indie (independent) bookstores rock but the marketplace is hard for small stores trying to compete against the likes of Barnes and Noble and Amazon. What’s a future indie bookstore owner to do?
The Globe & Mail talked with Jason Rovito recently about his soon-to-open Toronto bookstore named Of Swallows, Their Deeds, & the Winter Below. In addition to selling second-hand books, Rovito intends to sublet the space to other groups who share his vision and his quest to “…surround the books with related activities, things that can’t be translated into electronic exchange…” At the moment, that includes a literary journal and a school of writing.
Rovito acknowledges that bookstores, especially independent ones, have much to contend with these days. However, he argues for the bookstore’s continued importance in our culture, adding: “Perhaps bookstores will have to be defined as a place that sells things not otherwise available.”
Read the full article here.
February 4, 2010
From a blog post by author Caleb Crain on the Amazon vs. Macmillan debacle:
“What’s perhaps most breathtaking about the Amazon-Macmillan dispute is how little, finally, is at stake: should the highest price of an e-book be $9.95 or $14.95? No one dreams any more that it’s going to be $28. What’s being fought over is control, and the reason control is being fought over so viciously is that the only way such massive cost savings are going to be achieved is by consolidation–by collapsing a few of the intermediary steps somewhere between the creation of a book and the reading of it. Will you some day download your e-books directly from Farrar, Straus & Giroux’s website? Will Amazon some day be the publisher of Jonathan Franzen’s novels? Some future between these two outcomes is more likely to happen, but precisely where the division will fall remains to be seen. Authors, in the meantime, had better ask their agents to negotiate their e-book royalties very carefully, seeing as how, while the titans rage, the financial analysts have already factored into their bottom lines the expectation that someone else will be eating our slice of the pie.”
January 31, 2010
On Saturday, the New York Times reported on a dispute between online bookseller Amazon and one of the big six publishing houses, Macmillan. The long running dispute centers around the price Amazon would offer electronic copies of Macmillan titles, including the 2009 Man Booker Prize winner Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel and Jeffrey Eugenides’ Pulitzer Prize winning Middlesex, among other great literature and hot hits. The disagreement turned to fiasco this week when Macmillan stated they would not distribute newly published titles to Amazon unless the price for electronic books was negotiable. Amazon retaliated by removing all Macmillan titles for purchase from their database (consumers could still purchase the books through any of the third party sellers linked to Amazon).
Amazon’s attempts to use its leverage as the largest online seller of books failed, The Washington Post reports this evening. An article picked up from TechCrunch.com says that Amazon will sell the Macmillan titles for $14.99 at the publisher’s request and let consumers decide if the price is worth the purchase.
August 14, 2009
Check out this great video from the Regulator Bookshop in Durham, NC. Think you’re being green by shopping online from stores like Amazon? Think again!