Here’s a friendly tip for all wildlife photographers out there: don’t let mischievous monkeys (and other jungle animals) push the shutter button in your stead. The U.S. Copyright Office just released a new public draft of its compendium of practices, and in it, the agency clearly states that it will only recognize original works created by human beings. This new section’s first example of works it cannot register? “A photograph taken by a monkey.”
Link to the rest at Engadget and thanks to Joshua for the tip.
UPDATE: For those who don’t see new blog updates, I’m working on the problem. Some visitors see the new ones and others see this post even though more recent posts are up.
From Digital Book World:
It’s a question that’s been floating around for years now: What do publishers do in an era when anyone can publish a book?
And publishers have been answering it.
Several years ago, Digital Book World obtained a leaked document that publisher Hachette had been circulating among agents and authors, explaining the value it added to the publishing process . . . . Later, Random House put out a series of videos directly explaining what publishers do.
And now, Simon & Schuster has launched a series of videos featuring its editors giving inside details about titles and authors called “Behind the Book.” The company said in a release that the series is meant to be “an extension and a complement to Simon & Schuster’s ongoing series of author videos, offering new and revealing information that can enhance and inform the reading experience.”
The move also serves to give Simon & Schuster a consumer-facing brand that could help it in the future when legitimizing its role in the publishing process to authors and partners.
. . . .
Self-publishing advocates often argue that publishers don’t add enough value to the publishing process to legitimize their take. Publishers have responded by saying that they help make books better, offer them print distribution, help authors get translated into other languages and exploit other opportunities, and help authors build careers.
This series of videos is another small way that publishers are saying to authors — and readers — that they add value. The videos themselves (there are five at this point) show editors talking intelligently about various titles they worked on.
. . . .
In the book publishing world, authors have traditionally been the brand: Everyone wants to buy the new James Patterson title, not necessarily the latest release from his publisher, Hachette. But there are consumer brands among content companies in other media businesses and these brands give those companies advantages in the marketplace: For instance, everyone looks forward to new Disney and Pixar movies.
In the mid-1950s, literary iconoclast and beat icon Jack Kerouac (March 12, 1922–October 21, 1969) became intensely interested in Buddhism, which began permeating his writing. It was the golden age of Eastern ideas drawing Western minds, from legendary composer John Cage to pioneering philosopher Alan Watts, credited with popularizing Zen thinking in mainstream Western society. Watts, in fact, at one point criticized Kerouac’s writing as being “always a shade too self-conscious, too subjective, and too strident to have the flavor of Zen.” But when stripped of his literary self-consciousness, as he was in his private letters, Kerouac had a special way of articulating the most beautiful and eternal concepts of Zen Buddhism with equal parts expansive awareness and crystalline precision.
Kerouac sent one such letter to his first wife, Edie Kerouac Parker, in late January of 1957, a decade after their marriage had been annulled.
I have lots of things to teach you now, in case we ever meet, concerning the message that was transmitted to me under a pine tree in North Carolina on a cold winter moonlit night. It said that Nothing Ever Happened, so don’t worry. It’s all like a dream. Everything is ecstasy, inside. We just don’t know it because of our thinking-minds. But in our true blissful essence of mind is known that everything is alright forever and forever and forever. Close your eyes, let your hands and nerve-ends drop, stop breathing for 3 seconds, listen to the silence inside the illusion of the world, and you will remember the lesson you forgot, which was taught in immense milky way soft cloud innumerable worlds long ago and not even at all. It is all one vast awakened thing. I call it the golden eternity. It is perfect.
. . . .
We were never really born, we will never really die. It has nothing to do with the imaginary idea of a personal self, other selves, many selves everywhere: Self is only an idea, a mortal idea. That which passes into everything is one thing. It’s a dream already ended. There’s nothing to be afraid of and nothing to be glad about. I know this from staring at mountains months on end. They never show any expression, they are like empty space. Do you think the emptiness of space will ever crumble away? Mountains will crumble, but the emptiness of space, which is the one universal essence of mind, the vast awakenerhood, empty and awake, will never crumble away because it was never born.
If you’ve read this blog for long, you know a bit of my publishing story:
3 books written before I got an agent and sold.
Last Saturday, I received Romance Writers of America® highest award – A RITA®for my first published book, The Sweet Spot. I don’t even have words to describe that experience, but for me it was the pinnacle.
. . . .
Suddenly, I saw my paths clearly. I could stay and die, or leave and live. I guess I needed to hit bottom, because it gave me something to push off of. I decided to live.
. . . .
Over the years, I’ve come to cherish the lessons I learned in that cabin. I’ve kept the vow to never again let things ‘just happen’ to me. The experience showed me that no matter how many mistakes I made, I knew how to pick myself up and start over. That time in the cabin taught me to meet life, head on.
Five, ten, even fifteen years isn’t so long to wait for something you want. If it’s something you really want – don’t let the walls get in your way.