I haven't done a news round-up for a while, so here are some tidbits and links to kill time with as you drink your morning java:
This morning we should have confirmation of the new NOOK Tablet. Leaks say the new NOOK will have twice the RAM and storage as the Kindle Fire, along with a faster processor, for $249. Also, Barnes and Noble will offer the basic NOOK for $99 without the ads that plague the cheapest Kindle. I'll add the links once I can find offical word. [Editor's note: It's official.]
Yes, Virginia, the Pad Wars have started just in time for Christmas.
Remember how Publishers Weekly rubbed their hands with glee when Joe Konrath announced his hiatus from blogging and I said Joe wouldn't stay quiet for long? Well, Joe's been running guest posts be several of his friends with concise summaries by the man himself.
Amazon launched the Kindle Owner's Lending Library last week as part of their Prime package. I'm sorry, but $79 a year to only borrow one book a month? ONE? I don't think so Amazon. Sorry, guys, but I read more than that even on my current crazy-ass schedule.
Speaking of Amazon, the Threat to Holy Literature has expanded into Japan, on the heels of Amazon France, just in time for the Christmas holidays. (Do you think Jeff Bezos realizes that Christians are a minority in Japan?)
And in a reaction to Amazon, more of the Big 6 have decided to give their authors real-time numbers. What a fucking concept guys! My guess is only the Amazon sales numbers will be remotely accurate on these author portals. Let's just say I had a private conversation with a popular author. She was told she'd sold no e-books for the first six months of 2011, even though she's been ranked in the top 20% of sales on Amazon the entire time.
E-book sales are jumping despite the naysayers. Harlequin reported its digital sales rose to 7.1% of total sales through the third quarter of 2011. Bloomsbury reported similar increases.
Kobo keeps saying they will offer a self-publishing option like KDP or PubIt. But it looks like Kobo plans to be very picky about who they accept from the looks of their website. This annoys me because Kobo's perfectly happy to accept my book if it's sent through Smashwords, but they don't want it from me directly. *sigh*
Instead, Kobo is imitating Amazon by opening their own publishing arm and going after already established writers. No wonder the Big 6 are sending out those draconian contracts.
Speaking of draconian contracts, I'd love to see the one Kiana Davenport signed with Penguin. I'm hoping they have the stupidity to sue her so it becomes a public document. The NYTimes had a piece sympathetic to Ms. Davenport's position of trying to make a living on crappy NY contracts. Publishers Weekly snarked that NYT was "justifiying her breach." (Believe me, I wish I could link to THAT one for you!) Um, excuse me PW, but what happened to innocent until proven guilty? Not to mention that Penguin REJECTED the same book 15 years ago!
And if you thought Snooki's books were a very bad idea (yes, two more are coming out and I won't make you gag on your coffee by showing you the disgusting book trailer), then you don't want to know that Lindsey Lohan's mom is shopping her own tome. And no, I WON'T give you that link either. Not on a Monday morning.
Have a great week and get those word counts in!
Brutal Time Switch
4 hours ago