This is a big deal. Ever since BookScan started it has only included retail bookstore point of purchase sales in its reports, and not even every bookstore participated. Now, for the first time, BookScan will add sales data from Walmart into its totals. This will significantly change the numbers and represent 80% of English language book sales. However one must note that Walmart tends to carry only a small selection of bestselling titles, so this will skew the numbers more towards the bestsellers. Read the full article here.
Harlequin has always impressed me as one of the more savvy book publishers around. Their announcement this week is no exception. They are teaming up with steamy single girl magazine, Cosmopolitan, aka Cosmo, to launch a series of co-branded romance novels. Called Cosmo Red Hot Reads from Harlequin, these short (30,000 word) books will be e-originals and are aimed squarely at people who like to read their romance on a variety of devices.
Two e-books, priced at $3.99, will be released every month starting in May 2013. According to Harlequin the books will feature “narratives centering on modern young women living the free-spirited and outgoing lifestyle espoused by the international magazine.”
I’ve long wondered when a breakout cell-phone-only book will go viral and pull the rest of the industry along in its wake. This might be the powerhouse team that makes it happen.
Amazon Sells Subscription Package of Kids Books, Videos and Apps
Called Kindle FreeTime Unlimited, Amazon’s new all-in-one unlimited subscription service will offer all types of media from books and apps to movies and television shows for kids. It will work on any Kindle Fire device and will be available as part of Amazon’s next automatic OS software update for that device. The package features all kinds of media focused on children ages 3-8. Amazon Prime members get preferred pricing–$2.99/month per individual child (or $6.99 per family)–but others can subscribe for $4.99/month (or $9.99 per family.)
Companies participating in this subscription service by making their content available include: Andrews McMeel Publishing, Chronicle Books, DC Comics, Disney, HIT Entertainment, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, Marvel, Nickelodeon, PBS, Reading Rainbow, and Sesame Workshop, among others. Chris Van Allsburg’s “Jumanji” and Barbara Lehman’s “The Red Book” are among the available picture books, along with those featuring characters like Big Nate, Ivy and Bean, Phineas & Ferb, Shrek, and Kung Fu Panda. The service also includes ebook apps and in-book games from characters such as Thomas & Friends, Looney Tunes, Scooby-Doo, Arthur, Duck and Goose, Caillou and Superman, and from award-winning children’s author Sandra Boynton.
Read the entire announcement here.
Simon, Schuster, Harper & Collins anyone?
While I was right about acquisitions taking place among the Big Six this year, I was wrong about the players. I thought Amazon would buy HarperCollins. However, the multinational conglomerate who owns HarperCollins, Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp., seems to have other plans. They might be going after S&S.
Read all about their potential acquisition of venerable Simon & Schuster in this Publishers Weekly article.
I am at the WordPress Boot Camp, one of the first round of San Francisco Writers University classes for writers at Keplers Books in Menlo Park, CA.
Linda Lee is a phenomenal teacher. I’ve already learned three new things about WordPress…and I’ve been blogging with it for nearly a year!
San Francisco Writers University (Tip, hover over this link and you can see the title of the link!)
Congratulations to my client, Jill Sorenson, for a rare and jewel-like starred review in Publisher’s Weekly for her forthcoming romantic thriller AFTERSHOCK. Here’s a snippet from the review and a link to the entire review here.
“Sorenson (The Edge of Night) fuels this fast-paced romantic thriller with nonstop adrenaline. Paramedic Lauren Boyer is headed to an emergency call when an 8.5-magnitude earthquake hits San Diego, killing her partner and trapping her and others underneath a collapsed freeway. As Lauren desperately tries to save the wounded, she learns that three escaped felons are among those trapped beneath the freeway…This twisty roller-coaster ride keeps the pages turning.”
Here’s a great article from Shelf Awareness about the potential merger of Random House and Penguin, comedically referred to as either Penguin House or Random Penguin. I even like the logo they came up with as a spoof. But they make a variety of good points to consider. Well worth the read: http://www.shelf-awareness.com/issue.html?issue=1857
O.M.Golly. Today I just read that Random House is in discussions with Pearson, owner of Penguin, on a possible merger. I keep telling everyone who will listen that I believe Amazon is going to buy either HarperCollins or Simon & Schuster. This totally blindsided me. Wowza. Wonder if it will really happen. Can you see a “Random Penguin” in your future?