Archive for March, 2010

Since Borders has to repay over $40 million by April 1, I was pessimistic but PW just posted this:

Borders Close to Refinancing?

“A report from Bloomberg says that Borders is close to arranging new financing that would allow it to repay a $42.5 million loan due to stockholder William Ackman. The loan is due April 1. Borders had no comment.”

That was the whole article. I sort of feel like Borders should give up the ghost and just accept defeat. They have been on the “border” (pun intended) of bankruptcy for years – let it die already.


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Stephen King recently wrote a column in Entertainment Weekly about how he likes the Kindle and doesn’t like the iPad. (I don’t know the original column address, but here’s where I read it.)

My friend A. recently stayed at my house for the weekend and brought her new Kindle. She couldn’t put it down, and I was reluctantly impressed with it. I’ve been really really stubbornly refusing to partake in the e-book craze, and I don’t have an e-reader or a Kindle. But I kinda want one now.

Some perks I see for myself:

1. Don’t have to carry multiple books on trips
2. No glare on Kindle in sunny places where my computer might be hard to view
3. My eyesight is crap – I could make the text bigger
4. Save some money (I buy so many books, even the initial cost would save me money long term)
5. Greater access to self-published and small press books that I never seem to find in bookstores
6. Wireless everywhere!

The iPad, however, seems kind of pointless to me. Everything I’d use it for, I use my laptop for anyway. It’s not a convenient purse size like the Kindle, and my iBook is small and light enough that I don’t mind carrying it in my backpack. Plus, iPad always reminds me of this wonderful gem of a video: iPad MadTV.

But physical books will probably always be my preferred reading material. Plus, like Stephen King, I love having them around the house.

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I wrote this short paper for my Intro. to Publishing class, and I think it’s a really great overview of the self versus traditional (publishing house) publishing options.

Self v. Traditional Publishing. Basically, I outline the reasons for and against each type of getting a book into print. Overall, I would say traditional publishing is still the best way to really become well-known and get money from a book – but sometimes self-publishing is a great avenue through which to show traditional publishing houses the sales potential of a novel.

Please feel free to use this for REFERENCE purposes only.

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I worked for Borders for over a year. I quit because I wanted to concentrate on grad school, and my position there was getting increasingly stressful, but when I first started working there the friendly, laid-back atmosphere really appealed to me.

That said, I know why Borders is failing – they are just not up to the caliber of Barnes & Noble. B&N has cleaner stores, better informed staff, and a more refined feel. If I’m going to buy from a chain, I prefer B&N – though I do try to buy from local stores too. Borders’ higher-ups just have no idea how to sell books and run a bookstore – some of the programs they created to get Borders out of debt were absurd. And every store is way UNDERstaffed!

Why am I talking about Borders? Because Borders’ time is running out: Borders Loan Deadline Looms. Supposedly, there is a possibility that Borders will take part in a merger, instead of filing for Chapter 11 (Bankruptcy) but I think a merger is pretty unlikely – why would B&N want Borders? It would a HUGE undertaking to make over all the stores.

I hope Borders stays in business, but I know it’s pretty impossible. 😦

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In case you are trying to get published, you should know that there are a lot of scams out there in the world. There are fake publishers, editors, agents, etc., who will all try to take your money. Sometimes it’s really really hard to tell who’s fake and who’s not.

I just want to call everyone’s attention to a great site called Writer Beware, sponsored by the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America.

This site will show writers what to watch out for with contests, vanity presses, independent editors, etc. It even outlines what good editors, agents, and publishing professionals should be doing so that those new to the industry are aware.

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I just got a PAID internship! I don’t know much about book marketing, but now I will! Yay!!

I wrote a press release for Carol White Marketing in order to be considered, and I just found out I got the “independent contractor” position. I’m really excited because I think book marketing is an area that will be especially useful in the future. Plus, the fact that I’m paid is amazing – grad students always need a little extra dough.

I don’t know for sure what I’ll be doing exactly, but I know I’m a good writer so hopefully that will carry me through anything with which I am not readily familiar.

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We’ve all read so many things about “the future of publishing” and what’s going to happen with e-readers and digital content. I really like this YouTube video that I found through one of the Publisher’s Weekly blogs:

The Future of Publishing

I think this really speaks to the current market of readers. And while sometimes I despair of the kids I see who seem to only be interested in the shiny, glittery covers of the books rather than the actual plot, this gave me reason to be more optimistic – reminded me that there are still people out there who care about books and issues and publishing. And someday, like many other industries and trends, Publishing will revert, backtrack, and return to a day when everyone reads great books despite the lack of hype and shiny stuff. Yay!

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