Monthly Archives: June 2012

In this world, shipmates

28 June 2012
Comments Off on In this world, shipmates

In this world, shipmates, sin that pays its way can travel freely, and without passport; whereas Virtue, if a pauper, is stopped at all frontiers.

Herman Melville

DoJ Deal Will Lead to the ‘Systematic Elimination of Competition’

28 June 2012

From Publishers Weekly:

Readerlink has sent its own letter to the Department of Justice giving a wholesaler’s perspective on the proposed agreement with HarperCollins, Hachette and Simon & Schuster. According to Readerlink, the settlement, by encouraging a return to predatory pricing, “sets the stage for the systematic elimination of competition by Amazon.”

Readerlink… distributes print books to over 24,000 retailers, including most of the major mass merchandisers and warehouse clubs. Before the agency model was introduced, Amazon’s practice of selling e-books below cost both discouraged retailers from carry print books and from entering the e-book market themselves, Readerlink said. Due to the vast difference in price between print books and e-books, many of Readerlink’s retail partners reduced or ceased offering print books in their stores, a move that reduced consumers’ access to books, particularly among readers who can’t afford digital reading devices. ….

In taking issue with the government’s contention that the agency model led to an increase in all e-book prices, Readerlink maintained that the only prices that actually rose were those on bestsellers that had been “artificially” lowered by Amazon’s below-cost pricing.

The approval of the settlement, Readerlink argued, will “lead to the death of many print book sellers who provide the only way to buy books for an abundance of the American book-consuming public.” If the government protects Amazon’s ability to engage in predatory pricing it will “eliminate less financially strong or diversified competitors,and kill off the only other option for the reading public, the retail sale of print books in brick-and-mortar retail stores. And, then, there will be none; no more competition and on other options.” ….

 

Please link to the full story at Publishers Weekly 

If you’re not familiar with Readerlink, click here to learn more about who they are.

 

~contributed by guest blogger Kat Sheridan

The Book Arts Program.

28 June 2012

University of Maine, Machias.  The Book Arts Program.

Read more here: University of Maine at Machias.

Julia Barrett

Amazon To Buy Dorchester Publishing

28 June 2012

Corporate: Amazon Publishing In Line To Buy Dorchester Publishing Assets; BN Annual Report Tidbits
Months after long-troubled Dorchester Publishingwent into foreclosure with more than $2.9 million in outstanding debts to owner John Backe, it appears Amazon Publishing is in line to acquire the company’s backlist, contracts, and other intellectual property, according to a notice of public disposition issued on June 27 and first reported onby agent Richard Curtis. Potential bidders have until August 15 to submit competing offers and, should there be additional bidders, an auction will be held on August 28 at the offices of Garfunkel Wild in Great Neck, NY.
Considering how long Dorchester’s assets have been up for grabs, it seems fairly likely that Amazon will emerge as victor. If that’s the case, Amazon will acquire “all publication contacts regarding certain literary works (collectively, the Works) and related outbound license agreements of DP (collectively, the Contracts), subject to the purchaser negotiating certain amendments with the authors of the Works in exchange for payment by Amazon Publishing of the full amount of back royalties that DP indicates is owed to those authors as of May 31, 2012” as well as “any existing advances…records and correspondence pertaining to the Works (including copies of W-9s and 1099s)…artwork and all print-ready files, book plates, flats, film negatives, electronic design files, or other production materials…third party permissions” and ebook editions, where available. Dorchester Publishing has also agreed “to revert the rights to any Works not assigned to Amazon
Publishing following Amazon’s request.”

 

Link to part of it Publisher’s Lunch

guest posted by Barbara Morgenroth  hat tip to Loretta Rogers

 

Ex-RH CEO Alberto Vitale Sill Has a Lot to Say About Publishing

28 June 2012

From Publishing Perspectives’ interview with former Random House CEO Alberto Vitale: 

What do you think a right price for an eBook should be?

The price of the eBook should be $9.99 and down, I am convinced of that. Some publishers who have adopted the agency model are pricing them at $12.99 and $14.99 or more, and this is way too high. They might sell a lot of books at that price, but they would sell a hell of a lot more if they would price them at $9.99. One of the things that publishers have to be used to is the power of the internet. A lot of the books that are published digitally on the internet are bought on impulse. Many or even most of those books will never be read by the buyers. Often what matters to book buyers is possession: “I have the book, and eventually I will read it.” In the meantime there is a new book, and another new book, and another, and you buy them!

 

What do you think that right now are the main threats in the publishing industry?

I don’t like to talk about threats; I like to talk about opportunities, which is a big difference. I think everyone spending time talking about threats is wasting a lot of time and a lot of goodwill. The publishing industry is undergoing epochal changes because of the digital technology, but the digital technology is also affording the publishing world many opportunities that are unprecedented. You will see that, in the not too distant future, the profitability of these publishing companies will increase because of the digital technologies: no printing, no binding, no paper investment, no shrinkage, no returns, no inventory obsolescence… You can see already now that in the best publishing houses the profits are going up even in the face of a very difficult marketplace. And in the future it is going to be much more like that. So I look at the digital technologies and the internet as liberating factors that will allow publishers to make a lot of money. I told a group of Fulbright students recently: “You take Italy, you have 60 million Italians living outside their country, not necessarily Italian by birth, but of Italian extraction, who still speak the language. These people cannot buy an Italian book, but with the internet, through Amazon, they will have access not only to front list but also to the backlist of Italian publishers that before was mostly unavailable. So that should be a bonanza for Italian publishers and, of course, not only for Italian publishers.

It is the long tail, selling a little of a lot of things …

Yes. This is an opportunity. E-books are more accessible, the experience of buying is more personal. Here is what I mean: you no longer have to deal with a bookseller who looks down on you because he doesn’t know you, and who won’t help you to find a book. Nor do you have to deal with a big superstore where you cannot find the book you’re looking for. Now, you go to Amazon and it tells you: “Ah! You are the one who likes this type of books. Why don’t you look at these other books, in case you like them?” There is power in this internet. And the publishers who embrace the technology and who are smart enough or creative enough to go and move with it are going to be very profitable. An eReader can store 1,500 books. In my opinion, this is a major, major opportunity for publishers.

 …

Do you think that the ones that will suffer more will be small ones, or the big ones?

The big ones will suffer more, if they do not invest both financially, technologically and intellectually in the changes that are constantly happening. The changes have to be constant because the era of digital technology is an era of change, and you have to get organized for change. The best people to manage change are the young people. On the other hand, the independent publishers, as much as the big publisher, have a new lease on life because access to the web is powerful, and you did not have it before. If you were a small publisher and you went to Barnes and Noble, unless you hit on a best-seller, they would not even look at you. And now, on the web, it is anonymous, you go, you make your pitch, and you go for the best. So I would say that the most vulnerable, in my opinion, are the publishers who are not able to get on with the changes. Whether they are small or big, it doesn’t matter.

What do you see for the book industry in ten years?

Print is not going to go away, print is going to stay. But print will become more precious. In other words, hardcover books will be better produced, better printed, better bound and much more expensive. Publishers will have to become much smarter in the ways they distribute books, so that they do not have big returns. If we order a book now at Amazon, tomorrow morning the book is in California delivered at your doorstep. Publishers have to try to get to that level of efficiency. Publishers need to use and exploit technology to disseminate intellectual property as far as they can in the formats that are the most appealing to the general public. And that will require an enormous amount of effort and also talent: have people who can relate to this new world. Apart from that, today publishing works with publishing seasons. My feeling is that publishing should be a continuum: you publish when you are ready to publish… I know that the model of publishing seasons is obsolete.

Read the rest at Ex-RH CEO Alberto Vitale Sill Has a Lot to Say About Publishing

Alberto Vitale is nearly 80 years old. He ran Random House  from 1989 until 2002. The difference between his viewpoint and the leadership of the current mainstream big publishing houses is astounding. Most of the quotes I’ve pulled from the interview say things that I think are totally obvious, but are heresy to “publishing insiders”. I used to wonder if I really just didn’t know enough about the publishing business and there was some sort of insider knowledge that would change my mind. There aren’t a whole lot of people who can lay claim to having more experience in publishing than Vitale. Reading this interview leads me to think that this stuff really is as obvious as it seems. For the folks who are on the inside of publishing, I would like to call it this bit of wisdom from Vitale: I think everyone spending time talking about threats is wasting a lot of time and a lot of goodwill.

-William Ockham

Henry V, Act 5, Scene II

28 June 2012

Exeunt all except HENRY, KATHARINE, and ALICE

KING HENRY V

Fair Katharine, and most fair,
Will you vouchsafe to teach a soldier terms
Such as will enter at a lady’s ear
And plead his love-suit to her gentle heart?

KATHARINE

Your majesty shall mock at me; I cannot speak your England.

KING HENRY V

O fair Katharine, if you will love me soundly with
your French heart, I will be glad to hear you
confess it brokenly with your English tongue. Do
you like me, Kate?

KATHARINE

Pardonnez-moi, I cannot tell vat is ‘like me.’

KING HENRY V

An angel is like you, Kate, and you are like an angel.

KATHARINE

Que dit-il? que je suis semblable a les anges?

ALICE

Oui, vraiment, sauf votre grace, ainsi dit-il.

KING HENRY V

I said so, dear Katharine; and I must not blush to
affirm it.

KATHARINE

O bon Dieu! les langues des hommes sont pleines de
tromperies.

KING HENRY V

What says she, fair one? that the tongues of men
are full of deceits?

ALICE

Oui, dat de tongues of de mans is be full of
deceits: dat is de princess.

KING HENRY V

The princess is the better Englishwoman. I’ faith,
Kate, my wooing is fit for thy understanding: I am
glad thou canst speak no better English; for, if
thou couldst, thou wouldst find me such a plain king
that thou wouldst think I had sold my farm to buy my
crown. I know no ways to mince it in love, but
directly to say ‘I love you:’ then if you urge me
farther than to say ‘do you in faith?’ I wear out
my suit. Give me your answer; i’ faith, do: and so
clap hands and a bargain: how say you, lady?

KATHARINE

Sauf votre honneur, me understand vell.

KING HENRY V

Marry, if you would put me to verses or to dance for
your sake, Kate, why you undid me: for the one, I
have neither words nor measure, and for the other, I
have no strength in measure, yet a reasonable
measure in strength. If I could win a lady at
leap-frog, or by vaulting into my saddle with my
armour on my back, under the correction of bragging
be it spoken. I should quickly leap into a wife.
Or if I might buffet for my love, or bound my horse
for her favours, I could lay on like a butcher and
sit like a jack-an-apes, never off. But, before God,
Kate, I cannot look greenly nor gasp out my
eloquence, nor I have no cunning in protestation;
only downright oaths, which I never use till urged,
nor never break for urging. If thou canst love a
fellow of this temper, Kate, whose face is not worth
sun-burning, that never looks in his glass for love
of any thing he sees there, let thine eye be thy
cook. I speak to thee plain soldier: If thou canst
love me for this, take me: if not, to say to thee
that I shall die, is true; but for thy love, by the
Lord, no; yet I love thee too. And while thou
livest, dear Kate, take a fellow of plain and
uncoined constancy; for he perforce must do thee
right, because he hath not the gift to woo in other
places: for these fellows of infinite tongue, that
can rhyme themselves into ladies’ favours, they do
always reason themselves out again. What! a
speaker is but a prater; a rhyme is but a ballad. A
good leg will fall; a straight back will stoop; a
black beard will turn white; a curled pate will grow
bald; a fair face will wither; a full eye will wax
hollow: but a good heart, Kate, is the sun and the
moon; or, rather, the sun, and not the moon; for it
shines bright and never changes, but keeps his
course truly. If thou would have such a one, take
me; and take me, take a soldier; take a soldier,
take a king. And what sayest thou then to my love?
speak, my fair, and fairly, I pray thee.

KATHARINE

Is it possible dat I sould love de enemy of France?

KING HENRY V

No; it is not possible you should love the enemy of
France, Kate: but, in loving me, you should love
the friend of France; for I love France so well that
I will not part with a village of it; I will have it
all mine: and, Kate, when France is mine and I am
yours, then yours is France and you are mine.

KATHARINE

I cannot tell vat is dat.

KING HENRY V

No, Kate? I will tell thee in French; which I am
sure will hang upon my tongue like a new-married
wife about her husband’s neck, hardly to be shook
off. Je quand sur le possession de France, et quand
vous avez le possession de moi,–let me see, what
then? Saint Denis be my speed!–donc votre est
France et vous etes mienne. It is as easy for me,
Kate, to conquer the kingdom as to speak so much
more French: I shall never move thee in French,
unless it be to laugh at me.

KATHARINE

Sauf votre honneur, le Francois que vous parlez, il
est meilleur que l’Anglois lequel je parle.

KING HENRY V

No, faith, is’t not, Kate: but thy speaking of my
tongue, and I thine, most truly-falsely, must needs
be granted to be much at one. But, Kate, dost thou
understand thus much English, canst thou love me?

KATHARINE

I cannot tell.

KING HENRY V

Can any of your neighbours tell, Kate? I’ll ask
them. Come, I know thou lovest me: and at night,
when you come into your closet, you’ll question this
gentlewoman about me; and I know, Kate, you will to
her dispraise those parts in me that you love with
your heart: but, good Kate, mock me mercifully; the
rather, gentle princess, because I love thee
cruelly. If ever thou beest mine, Kate, as I have a
saving faith within me tells me thou shalt, I get
thee with scambling, and thou must therefore needs
prove a good soldier-breeder: shall not thou and I,
between Saint Denis and Saint George, compound a
boy, half French, half English, that shall go to
Constantinople and take the Turk by the beard?
shall we not? what sayest thou, my fair
flower-de-luce?

KATHARINE

I do not know dat

KING HENRY V

No; ’tis hereafter to know, but now to promise: do
but now promise, Kate, you will endeavour for your
French part of such a boy; and for my English moiety
take the word of a king and a bachelor. How answer
you, la plus belle Katharine du monde, mon tres cher
et devin deesse?

KATHARINE

Your majestee ave fausse French enough to deceive de
most sage demoiselle dat is en France.

KING HENRY V

Now, fie upon my false French! By mine honour, in
true English, I love thee, Kate: by which honour I
dare not swear thou lovest me; yet my blood begins to
flatter me that thou dost, notwithstanding the poor
and untempering effect of my visage. Now, beshrew
my father’s ambition! he was thinking of civil wars
when he got me: therefore was I created with a
stubborn outside, with an aspect of iron, that, when
I come to woo ladies, I fright them. But, in faith,
Kate, the elder I wax, the better I shall appear:
my comfort is, that old age, that ill layer up of
beauty, can do no more, spoil upon my face: thou
hast me, if thou hast me, at the worst; and thou
shalt wear me, if thou wear me, better and better:
and therefore tell me, most fair Katharine, will you
have me? Put off your maiden blushes; avouch the
thoughts of your heart with the looks of an empress;
take me by the hand, and say ‘Harry of England I am
thine:’ which word thou shalt no sooner bless mine
ear withal, but I will tell thee aloud ‘England is
thine, Ireland is thine, France is thine, and Harry
Plantagenet is thine;’ who though I speak it before
his face, if he be not fellow with the best king,
thou shalt find the best king of good fellows.
Come, your answer in broken music; for thy voice is
music and thy English broken; therefore, queen of
all, Katharine, break thy mind to me in broken
English; wilt thou have me?

KATHARINE

Dat is as it sall please de roi mon pere.

KING HENRY V

Nay, it will please him well, Kate it shall please
him, Kate.

KATHARINE

Den it sall also content me.

KING HENRY V

Upon that I kiss your hand, and I call you my queen.

KATHARINE

Laissez, mon seigneur, laissez, laissez: ma foi, je
ne veux point que vous abaissiez votre grandeur en
baisant la main d’une de votre seigeurie indigne
serviteur; excusez-moi, je vous supplie, mon
tres-puissant seigneur.

KING HENRY V

Then I will kiss your lips, Kate.

KATHARINE

Les dames et demoiselles pour etre baisees devant
leur noces, il n’est pas la coutume de France.

KING HENRY V

Madam my interpreter, what says she?

ALICE

Dat it is not be de fashion pour les ladies of
France,–I cannot tell vat is baiser en Anglish.

KING HENRY V

To kiss.

ALICE

Your majesty entendre bettre que moi.

KING HENRY V

It is not a fashion for the maids in France to kiss
before they are married, would she say?

ALICE

Oui, vraiment.

KING HENRY V O Kate, nice customs curtsy to great kings. Dear
Kate, you and I cannot be confined within the weak
list of a country’s fashion: we are the makers of
manners, Kate; and the liberty that follows our
places stops the mouth of all find-faults; as I will
do yours, for upholding the nice fashion of your
country in denying me a kiss: therefore, patiently
and yielding.

Kissing her

You have witchcraft in your lips, Kate: there is
more eloquence in a sugar touch of them than in the
tongues of the French council; and they should
sooner persuade Harry of England than a general
petition of monarchs. Here comes your father.

William Shakespeare

 

Such a perfectly crafted scene crackling with new love and Hank Cinq, un quelle smooth-talker!

 

link to entire play Henry V

Guest post by Barbara Morgenroth

Laura Ingalls Wilder’s Letter To A Fan

27 June 2012

 

 

Link to Laura’s Own Hand

guest post by someone who wishes to be that gracious always,

Barbara Morgenroth

Google Unveils New Tablet

27 June 2012

Hi all,

Looks interesting.  Unfortunately I can only post the link, not the video:

http://sanfrancisco.cbslocal.com/video/7443946-google-unveils-new-tablet-at-sf-io-conference/#.T-tmvMUIvME.email

—  Julia Barrett

Better to sleep

27 June 2012

Better to sleep with a sober cannibal than a drunken Christian.

Herman Melville

R.I.P. Nora Ephron

27 June 2012

NEW YORK — Nora Ephron, the essayist, author and filmmaker who challenged and thrived in the male-dominated worlds of movies and journalism and was loved, respected and feared for her wit, died on Tuesday of leukemia. She was 71.

Ephron’s son, Jacob Bernstein, confirmed her death. Her book publisher Alfred A. Knopf also confirmed it in a statement.

Born into a family of screenwriters, she was a top journalist in her 20s and 30s, then a best-selling author and successful director. Ephron was among the most quotable and influential writers of her generation. She wrote and directed such favorites as “Julie & Julia” and “Sleepless in Seattle,” and her books included the novel “Heartburn,” a brutal roman a clef about her marriage to Washington Post reporter Carl Bernstein; and the popular essay collections “I Feel Bad About My Neck” and “I Remember Nothing.”

 

She will be missed.

Link to entire obit in Wall Street Journal

guest post by Barbara Morgenroth

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