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British author Mark Dawson reportedly earns hundreds of thousands of dollars a year selling his self-published books.
The author of The John Milton series has revealed some of his marketing secrets in an interview with Forbes. For instance, he spends hours each day building relationships with readers online. He also spends $370 a day on Facebook advertising. Here is more from the Forbes interview:
The really cool thing about Facebook advertising is the targeting you can do. If you’re writing a romance book and you’re frequently compared to Nora Roberts – who’s a big romance writer – you can target your ads so they land in the news feeds of someone who like Roberts’ Facebook page. That’s quite broad, you can be even more broad than that. You can specify things like ‘I just want people in the US who have done this or that’ or ‘I just want people who use iOS.
The cover for the English edition of Death’s End has been unveiled. We’ve embedded the full image above—what do you think?
This science-fiction book, the third and final installment of The Three-Body Problem trilogy, was written by Chinese novelist Cixin Liu. Author Ken Liu served as the translator for this project.
According to the Tor.com blog, book two, entitled The Dark Forest, is slated to come out in August 2015. Death’s End will be released in January 2016.
Historian Peter Gay has died. He was 91 years old.
Throughout his career, Gay researched and wrote about a wide array of different subjects including the Enlightenment, Victorian middle class societies, and psychologist Sigmund Freud. He continued working into his 80’s and published Modernism: The Lure of Heresy in 2007.
Here’s more from The New York Times: “It was his work on the 18th century that sealed Mr. Gay’s reputation as one of the pre-eminent historians of his generation. Voltaire’s Politics, published in 1959, was followed by The Enlightenment: An Interpretation, a monumental two-part study whose first volume, subtitled The Rise of Modern Paganism, won the National Book Award in 1967. The second volume, subtitled The Science of Freedom, was published in 1969.”
We're delighted to have Augusta Scattergood kicking-off our new Author Spotlight Blog Series.
Harry Potter series author J.K. Rowling has unveiled a surprising revelation on Twitter. When one fan, known as @HotmHayles, asked her about the full name of a minor (but memorable) character named Moaning Myrtle, Rowling responded: “Myrtle Elizabeth Warren.”
Rowling also shared that she did not name this character after the United States senator Elizabeth Warren. Below, we’ve collected several messages from Twitter in a Storify post.
Here’s more from Hypable.com: “This is the first time we’ve been told this particular fact about one of the series’ most annoying (yet oddly endearing) characters. Moaning Myrtle was born in 1929 and died in 1943, killed by the basilisk Tom Riddle set loose on the school. J.K. Rowling has previously stated that the character was Muggle-born, and that she was sorted into Ravenclaw House.” (via Entertainment Weekly)
Was there a real person behind the character Fitzwilliam Darcy of Pride and Prejudice fame? According to The Daily Express, one academic named Dr. Susan Law feels that that may very well be the case.
Law argues that while she cannot be totally certain, she feels that John Parker (the first Earl of Morley) served as a muse for Jane Austen’s famous romantic male lead. She devoted five years to conducting extensive research over letters, diaries, newspapers, and a field trip.
Here’s more from The Telegraph: “Austen, she says, spent time at the Earl’s home in Saltram House in Plymouth, Devon, during the period in which she wrote Pride and Prejudice at the turn of the 19th century. The Earl’s second wife, Frances, was also a very close friend of the celebrated writer. At the time, the historian claims, it was widely believed in literary circles that Frances was in fact the author of Pride and Prejudice, which had originally been published anonymously.”
Author Patricia Cornwell (pictured, via) has landed a two-book deal with HarperCollins.
Both titles continue the story of medical examiner Kay Scarpetta. The William Morrow imprint will publish the first book in Fall 2016 and the second book in Fall 2017.
Here’s more from the press release: “The deal was negotiated by David Highfill, vice president and executive editor at William Morrow and Esther Newberg of ICM Partners. In the UK Patricia Cornwell is published on the HarperFiction imprint.”
“What’s in a name?” The Electric Lit team has explores this question with a new infographic on “A History of Pen Names.”
The image features several literary icons including Alice in Wonderland author Lewis Carroll, The Adventures of Tom Sawyer author Mark Twain, and Jane Eyre author Charlotte Brontë. We’ve embedded the full piece below for you to explore further—what do you think?
The executives behind Literature Wales will launch the first-ever International Dylan Day on May 14th.
The date was chosen to commemorate the premiere of Dylan Thomas’ play Under Milk Wood. That production took place in 1953 at the 92Y Poetry Center.
According to the press release, the organization hopes “to make it an annual celebration of Thomas’ life and work.” The program for this year’s celebration includes “a #DylanDay Twitter campaign,” the Dylan’s Great Poem online initative, “the first public viewing of Dylan Thomas’ recently discovered ‘lost notebook.'” and “performances throughout the United Kingdom.”
Children’s Book author Marcia Brown has died. The Caldecott winning author and illustrator was 96 years old.
The New York Times reported that Brown died on April 28 at her home in Laguna Hills, CA.
Brown was the author and illustrator behind dozens of story books, which included original stories, as well as adaptations of classic folk tales and fairy tales. Her award-winning work includes: “Cinderella, or the Little Glass Slipper”; “Once a Mouse”; “Stone Soup” and “Shadow,” among many others.
Here is more from The NY Times:
As an illustrator, she employed a diverse range of styles and media, including woodcuts, collage, pen-and-ink drawings, watercolors and gouache. In \"Shadow,\" for instance, she invoked the haunting African landscape of the Cendrars poem through richly layered collages of paper, paint and print. Reviewing the work, The Washington Post called it \"a highly original and exciting picture book.\"
Writer Jennifer Weiner has contributed a piece to TIME magazine’s “Letters From Mom” series. This venture was organized in honor of Mother’s Day which is scheduled to take place on May 10th this year.
Weiner (pictured, via) shared a message for her two daughters, Lucy and Phoebe. She hopes that the two girls will realize that “you are so much more than your looks.” Over on Facebook, she posted a link to the piece and told her fans that she feels “proud of this one.”
Here’s an excerpt: “My prayer is that you’ll never lose sight of yourselves—all of yourselves. You are so much more than just your looks. Your bodies are perfect, perfectly made and perfectly sized. You don’t have to waste years of your life fighting against them, or trying to fit someone else’s idea of beautiful (especially if that person is taking your money and whispering snake-oil promises about how if you only stick to this diet/cleanse/fitness plan, if you only get this injection/operation/painful piece of shapewear, you’ll look the way you should). Love your bodies for what they can do.”
The cover for Sara Varon’s forthcoming graphic novel, entitled Sweaterweather & Other Stories, has been unveiled. We’ve embedded the full image above—what do you think?
Varon offers readers a glimpse into her creative process with this project. First Second will publish this book in February 2016. (via School Library Journal)
As much as I love blogging, I’m not always sure other people are listening in. A few weeks ago I got an incredible email from blog reader Linda Jackson that reminded me what I do here does indeed connect with readers, sometimes in very big ways.
Since that day I received an email from Amazon stating that May B. was a book of the month then saw your WOW Wednesday post on Adventures in Children’s Publishing, I have been totally inspired and motivated by your story. I don’t know if you know this, but I have a list of authors on my website under a tab titled Inspiration, and you are at the top of the list. What has inspired me most was your post Plow to the End of the Row. And today I want to share with you that I have plowed to the end of the row, which is quite fitting seeing that the main character in the manuscript that finally landed me an agent actually has to work in a cotton field.
After six years of working hard and believing, 200+ queries, 4 manuscripts (one of them rewritten multiple times, once from scratch), 4 R&R’s from agents, 7 pitch contest wins, I finally got “The Call” today.
So, that’s my story, and I wanted you to know how you influenced it…which is why I will ALWAYS BUY YOUR BOOKS! Interestingly, after reading your post on Working Hard and Believing, I remember thinking, Lord, please don’t let that happen to me. I could never survive 200 queries. When I read about Kathryn Stockett and her five years of querying, I said I could never do that. And when I read that Becca Fitzpatrick re-wrote the same manuscript for five years and even trashed it and rewrote it from scratch, I said I could never do that. I have done ALL that and more. The manuscript that I queried forever and rewrote forever is still NOT the one that got an editor/agent’s attention. I had to write something new. We never know what we can survive until we have to survive it.
Thanks for being an inspiration,
I’ve been sitting on this email for weeks, waiting to hear where Linda’s book landed. Here’s the official news from Publisher’s Marketplace:
Mississippi-native Linda Jackson’s BECOMING ROSA, a coming-of-age tale set in Mississippi in 1955, about a young African-American girl who dreams of a life beyond the cotton fields, to Elizabeth Bewley at Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Children’s, at auction, in a two-book deal, for publication in Fall 2016, by Victoria Marini at Gelfman Schneider/ICM (World English).
Congratulations, Linda! Your story has thrilled me down to my toes and has inspired me to keep plowing. Now, readers, go out and congratulate the remarkable Linda Jackson.
The post Six Years of Working Hard and Believing appeared first on Caroline Starr Rose.
British artist Johanna Basford (pictured, via) has inked a deal with Penguin Random House to create two new coloring books for adults. Book one, entitled Lost Ocean: An Underwater Adventure & Coloring Book, will be released on October 27th.
Here’s more from the press release: “With LOST OCEAN, Johanna Basford invites color-inners of all ages to discover an enchanting underwater world hidden in the depths of the sea. Through intricate pen and ink illustrations to complete, color, and embellish, readers will meet shoals of exotic fish, curious octopi, and delicately penned seahorses.”
Madeline McIntosh, the president of the Penguin Publishing Group, and Jake Lingwood, the deputy managing director and publisher at Ebury Publishing, negotiated the deal with literary agent Ed Victor. Meg Leder, the executive editor at the United States’ Penguin Books, and Elen Jones, an editor at the United Kingdom’s Virgin Books, will edit these projects.
Junot Díaz has become an advocate for the New York Public Library. The Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist credits libraries for helping him grow and develop into a creative professional.
Here’s an excerpt from Díaz’s letter: “Libraries are one of the greatest American institutions — they are not only treasure houses of knowledge, they are also fiercely democratic spaces. It kills me that New York City — the home of one of the greatest library systems in the world — has been under-funding libraries for over a decade. This has to stop.”
In recent years, the NYPL had to deal with a number of funding cuts; this is one of the factors that propelled Díaz to write a letter to library patrons urging them to contact New York City’s mayor and city council members. Fellow author Judy Blume also wrote a piece on behalf of the NYPL. Both Díaz and Blume hope to mobilize bibliophiles to fight for a budget increase.
A group of scholars from the University of California, Berkley have uncovered more than 100 lost stories written by Mark Twain.
Twain (pictured, via) wrote these pieces almost 150 years ago when he worked at a California-based newspaper. At that point in time, the celebrated writer was fighting confusion and trying to figure out a direction for his career.
Here’s more from The Guardian: “His topics range from San Francisco police – who at one point attempted, unsuccessfully, to sue Twain for comparing their chief to a dog chasing its tail to impress its mistress – to mining accidents. Bob Hirst is editor of the UC Berkeley’s Mark Twain project, which unearthed the articles by combing through western newspaper archives and scrapbooks. The author’s characteristic style authenticated some of the unsigned letters.” (via BuzzFeed.com)
Are you excited for the Paper Towns film? In the video embedded above, author and executive producer John Green offers his opinion on adaptation projects and shares a few spoilers about the movie.
According to Green’s website, he became interested in \"the weird cartographic phenomenon of paper towns\" during his college years. Click on these links to watch the official film trailer and a behind-the-scenes video on the set of the Paper Towns movie.
Chipotle Mexican Grill has launched the Cultivating Creativity Student Essay Contest.
According to the press release, the winning entries will be published on the restaurant’s cups and bags some time in 2016. Each of the winners will receive $20,000 in prize money which will be “deposited into a 529 savings account, to support their continuing education.”
Jonathan Safran Foer, an author and the curator of this series, and Laura Esquive, a novelist and screenwriter, will serve as the judges. The submission deadline has been set for May 31st. Follow this link to submit a story.
Author Harper Lee has launched a nonprofit organization called the Mockingbird Company. AL.com reports that it will coordinate yearly performances of the To Kill a Mockingbird stage adaptation in Lee’s Alabama hometown.
Prior to this development, the executives behind the Dramatic Publishing Co. refused to extend the performance rights. After Lee stepped in, an announcement was made on the Dramatic Publishing Co.’s Facebook page that the “Mockingbird Company will produce the play in Monroeville beginning in 2016.”
Here’s more from The Independent: “A Facebook page was called Save Monroeville’s To Kill a Mockingbird play was set up to bring attention to the issue and help keep the play in Lee’s hometown. The page garnered support from around 4,000 people and even big names such as Oprah and J.K. Rowling.” (via The Huffington Post)
By: Maryann Yin,
Blog: Galley Cat (Mediabistro)
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, Chris Albani
, Edgar Allan Poe
, Gillian Flynn
, J.W. Ocker
, James Klise
, Jane Casey
, Kate Milford
, Sally Wainwright
, Stephen King
, Tom Bouman
, William Mann
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The Mystery Writers of America have revealed the 2015 Edgar Award winners. According to the press release, the announcements were made at the organization’s 69th gala banquet.
This annual prize, named after beloved writer Edgar Allan Poe, was established in 1945 to honor the best authors within the mystery genre. Below, we’ve posted the full list of winners.
2015 Edgar Award Winners
Best Novel: Mr. Mercedes by Stephen King
Best First Novel by an American Author: Dry Bones in the Valley by Tom Bouman
Best Paperback Original: The Secret History of Las Vegas by Chris Abani
Best Fact Crime: Tinseltown: Murder, Morphine, and Madness at the Dawn of Hollywood by William Mann
Best Critical/Biographical: Poe-Land: The Hallowed Haunts of Edgar Allan Poe by J.W. Ocker
Best Short Story: “What Do You Do?” (from The Rogues Short Story Collection) by Gillian Flynn
Best Juvenile: Greenglass House by Kate Milford
Best Young Adult: The Art of Secrets by James Klise
Best Television Episode Teleplay: “Episode 1″ (from the Happy Valley teleplay) by Sally Wainwright
Simon & Schuster-Mary Higgins Clark Award: The Stranger You Know by Jane Casey
By: Maryann Yin,
Blog: Galley Cat (Mediabistro)
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, Blue Balliet
, Gordon Korman
, Jackson Pierce
, Jude Watson
, Lauren Tarshis
, Maggie Stiefvater
, Michael Northtrop
, Patrik Henry Bass
, R.L. Stine
, Roland Smith
, Tui T. Sutherland
, Varian Johnson
, Wendy Wan-Long Shang
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Scholastic has enlisted 13 children’s books authors to help with the Summer Reading Challenge program.
The participants include R.L. Stine, Maggie Stiefvater and Jackson Pierce, Gordon Korman, Michael Northtrop, Varian Johnson, Jude Watson, Blue Balliet, Patrik Henry Bass, Roland Smith, Tui T. Sutherland, Lauren Tarshis, and Wendy Wan-Long Shang. These writers will create original short stories; kids will be able to access these “rewards” by tracking the minutes they spend reading.
According to the press release, “each of the authors has written a unique short story using the same opening sentence which is, ‘I glanced over my shoulder to make sure that no one had followed me into the shadowy library, then took a deep breath and opened the glowing book…'” The organizers behind this venture hope to break the record of 304,749,681 minutes (spent reading) that was set last summer.
Michael Blake has died. He was 69 years old.
Blake was best known for writing the novel Dances with Wolves. He went on to win an Academy Award for adapting the book for the 1990 film adaptation.
Some of Blake’s other books include The Holy Road, Marching To Valhalla, and Airman Mortensen. When he wasn’t busy with writing and movie project, Blake served as a humanitarian on behalf of Native Americans and America’s wild horses. (via The Hollywood Reporter)
This year marks the 17th anniversary of the Battle of Hogwarts. In honor of this occasion, J.K. Rowling has decided to “apologise for one death per anniversary.”
SPOILER ALERT: If you don’t want to know more about Harry Potter & The Deathly Hallows, you should stop reading now.
Over the weekend, the Harry Potter series author wrote an apologetic tweet for the loss of Fred Weasley. According to Entertainment Weekly, that character’s death “was the worst for” Rowling.
Earlier today, Rowling also shared some inspirational words and images to encourage one fan to not give up on the search for meaning. Below, we’ve collected several messages from Twitter in a Storify post. (via Mashable.com)
Ruth Rendell has died. She was 85 years old.
The Los Angeles Times reports that Rendell (pictured, via) published over 60 books under her real name and a pseudonym called Barbara Vine. As a writer, she was well-known for the Inspector Wexford crime fiction series.
Here’s more from NPR.org: “Rendell’s most memorable creation may have been Chief Inspector Reginald Wexford: Liberal, intelligent, sensitive but hot-tempered, prone to quoting Shakespeare — Rendell based him partly on herself, and partly on her father. The mysteries Wexford solved weren’t simple whodunits — there were layers upon layers of psychological complication, packed with obsession, deception, social issues and power games.” (via The Guardian)
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The Fault in Our Stars author John Green delivered a speech at YouTube’s Brandcast conference.
The video embedded above features Green talking about the impact that YouTube has had on his careers as a writer and a video content creator. He encourages advertisers to devote less of their focus on attracting eyeballs.
Green has posted the piece in its entirety on The Huffington Post. Here’s an excerpt: “I can say ‘Our videos have been viewed more than a billion times’ and it sounds impressive, but it’s not actually an important number to me. I don’t care how many people watch or read something I make. I care how many people love what I make.” (via TechCrunch.com)