Archive for July, 2016

Paperback or e-book: which costs more?

July 31, 2016

Paperback or e-book: which costs more?

I recently wrote about how the AAP (Association of American Publishers) was reporting lower e-book sales, and how I thought that didn’t indicate that people were reading fewer e-books overall:

E-book sales are dropping…off the radar

One of my readers, Wildsubnet, commented that tradpubs (traditional publishers) charging more for Kindle books than for paperbacks might be having an impact.

That’s an analysis I haven’t done in a while, so I thought it was worth a look. 🙂

What I did was look at the bestselling paperbacks at Amazon.com, although that really sorts now by “Featured” (that’s likely to get more tradpubs)

Featured paperback books at Amazon.com (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*)

Before I do, though, let me address the situation a bit more.

From very early on, people would bring up (in the Amazon Kindle forums, for example), this idea that e-books should cost less than p-books (paperbooks). They often based it on the idea that it didn’t cost a publisher anything to put out an e-book, and that the natural materials cost was less.

The first one was based on a couple of ideas that didn’t tend to be true. One was that the publisher already had the e-book rights if they had the p-book rights, which was very often not the case. Another was that all it took was scanning the book if they didn’t already have a digital copy…in reality, the formatting is considerable. It also leaves out royalties for the author for the e-book.

The second one assumes that the list price of a book is set primarily to cover the cost of production…specifically, the cost of the “parts”. That’s actually quite a small part of the cost…there are legal costs, marketing, editing, proofreading, cover artist, lay-out, and so on.

When I would go to check, there were usually a few reasons why an e-book might be more than the p-book:

  • It was a case of Amazon discounting the p-book more…the publisher had set the price of the e-book lower, but Amazon had discounted the p-book more deeply
  • The comparison was to a p-book which had not yet been released…it was on pre-order
  • The p-book was used or remaindered

I can eliminate the second two when I look. I’ll also try to pick just from the Big 5 US trade publishers…although smaller publishers could also be included in the AAP survey.

Okay, here are the top ten that fit those parameters:

Rank Paper List Paperback Kindle Diff Comp to List
1  $      16.00  $         9.89  $  11.99  $ (2.10)  $           (4.01)
2  $      16.00  $         9.52  $  11.99  $ (2.47)  $           (4.01)
5  $      15.99  $         9.39  $    8.04  $   1.35  $           (7.95)
6  $      20.00  $       12.00  $  12.99  $ (0.99)  $           (7.01)
7  $      15.99  $       10.53  $  13.99  $ (3.46)  $           (2.00)
8  $        9.95  $         5.81  $    9.95  $ (4.14)  $                  –
9  $      14.99  $         8.99  $    7.99  $   1.00  $           (7.00)
10  $      16.00  $         9.60  $  11.99  $ (2.39)  $           (4.01)
12  $      16.00  $         9.40  $    9.99  $ (0.59)  $           (6.01)
13  $      16.99  $       10.19  $  11.99  $ (1.80)  $           (5.00)

“Diff” compares the Kindle price to the paperback price…a negative number (in parentheses) means that the Kindle book costs more…which is the case in 8 out of 10 here. There are negative savings. In the last column, a bigger number means more  savings with the Kindle  book compared to the print list  price. Every Kindle book is lower than the print list price.

Is this the same situation it was in the past? Is it because Amazon can freely discount p-books, but not e-books?

Generally, Amazon’s agreements with the biggest publishers are, reportedly, a modified version of the Agency Model. What that means is that Amazon has a limited ability to discount the books.

It still shows that the e-book price is “set by the publisher”, at least when I checked. We no longer see a digital price list.

My guess is that the publishers are setting the price of the e-books relatively high, but not higher than the list price for paper.

Wildsubnet’s comment got me thinking about something else.

I would not buy a p-book instead of an e-book, for me to read, if  it was just a few dollars different. It is simply so much easier for me to read an e-book…I’d skip the book, in most cases.

That’s me, though…let me ask you:

If you don’t see an answer there that works for you, feel free to let me and my readers know what you think by commenting on this post.

Join thousands of readers and try the free ILMK magazine at Flipboard!

All aboard our new The Measured Circle’s Geek Time Trip at The History Project! Do you have what it takes to be a Timeblazer?

* I am linking to the same thing at the regular Amazon site, and at AmazonSmile. When you shop at AmazonSmile, half a percent of your purchase price on eligible items goes to a non-profit you choose. It will feel just like shopping at Amazon: you’ll be using your same account. The one thing for you that is different is that you pick a non-profit the first time you go (which you can change whenever you want)…and the good feeling you’ll get. :) Shop ’til you help! :) By the way, it’s been interesting lately to see Amazon remind me to “start at AmazonSmile” if I check a link on the original Amazon site. I do buy from AmazonSmile, but I have a lot of stored links I use to check for things.

This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in the I Love My Kindle blog. To support this or other blogs/organizations, buy  Amazon Gift Cards from a link on the site, then use those to buy your items. There will be no cost to you, and a benefit to them.

Amazon’s Q2 financials: even better than Q1!

July 29, 2016

Amazon’s Q2 financials: even better than Q1!

Last quarter, I was blown away by Amazon’s 28% sales growth.

This quarter, as reported in this

press release

and in this

recorded webcast

the second quarter was even better, with a 31% increase over the same quarter in 2015!

This is starting to remind me of the movie The Blob…it just keeps growing and growing. 😉

That 31% number, though, is not the most astounding one in the information given.

How about this?

“Net income was $857 million in the second quarter, or $1.78 per diluted share, compared with $92 million, or $0.19 per diluted share, in second quarter 2015. “

That’s more than nine times as high!

I’m going to give you one more small excerpt:

“The second annual Prime Day was the biggest day ever for Amazon, and was also a record day for Amazon devices globally. Compared to Prime Day 2015, worldwide orders grew by more than 60%, orders from third-party sellers with Prime Day deals nearly tripled, and Prime members saved over twice as much on deals.”

They list all sorts of accomplishments, including the introduction of the new

All-New Kindle E-reader – Black, 6″ Glare-Free Touchscreen Display, Wi-Fi – Includes Special Offers (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*)

which has Bluetooth audio connection capability.

Even though that was mentioned, AWS (Amazon Web Services) was the star.

Clearly, another important piece was international expansion, especially in India.

That’s one reason why there is still a lot of room to grow.

It appears that what I call Phase 2 is working. 😉

Looking good!

Seeking Alpha transcript of the call, including the Q&A section

By this time tomorrow, we’ll know what the “secret product” which I wrote about here:

Geekwire: Amazon secret product launch this Sunday (7/31) at midnight

is.

I think there is a chance that it is the hardback of

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child – Parts I & II (Special Rehearsal Edition): The Official Script Book of the Original West End Production (at AmazonSmile*))

although I would have thought they would have really promoted that they could get that to people between midnight and  2:00 AM…so that hardback purchasers could have it as soon as Kindle purchasers.

However, the actual release date is Sunday…I don’t think they are going to be able to break the presumed embargo. There would have to be a special deal, and I just don’t think that’s the case.

I’m pleased that it will be getting more people to read plays…I’ve enjoyed many plays in book form.

While I definitely want to read it, at $14.99, I’ll give a family member the opportunity to give it to me as a gift. 😉

On the other hand, it may be something much more innovative. It appears that Len Edgerly is perhaps interviewing Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos for Friday’s

The Kindle Chronicles podcast

That will be the 8th anniversary show, and Len said that it was off to Seattle for hopefully the same guest as was on the 4h anniversary show…and the July 26th, 2012 episode had Jeff Bezos as a guest…

http://www.thekindlechronicles.com/2012/07/

Interesting times indeed!

Join thousands of readers and try the free ILMK magazine at Flipboard!

All aboard our new The Measured Circle’s Geek Time Trip at The History Project! Do you have what it takes to be a Timeblazer?

* I am linking to the same thing at the regular Amazon site, and at AmazonSmile. When you shop at AmazonSmile, half a percent of your purchase price on eligible items goes to a non-profit you choose. It will feel just like shopping at Amazon: you’ll be using your same account. The one thing for you that is different is that you pick a non-profit the first time you go (which you can change whenever you want)…and the good feeling you’ll get. :) Shop ’til you help! :) By the way, it’s been interesting lately to see Amazon remind me to “start at AmazonSmile” if I check a link on the original Amazon site. I do buy from AmazonSmile, but I have a lot of stored links I use to check for things.

This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in the I Love My Kindle blog. To support this or other blogs/organizations, buy  Amazon Gift Cards from a link on the site, then use those to buy your items. There will be no cost to you, and a benefit to them.

E-book sales are dropping…off the radar

July 28, 2016

E-book sales are dropping…off the radar

You could easily read the numbers in this

Publishers Weekly article by Jim Milliot

reporting on sales figures from the AAP (Association of American Publishers) comparing February 2016 to February 2015, and conclude that e-books were, perhaps, just a fad.

Sales of children’s/Young Adult e-books were down 41.7%.

E-book market share in that very important segment dropped almost 5%.

In the adult trade segment (what you would have bought in a bookstore…not textbooks and such), e-book sales declined more than half again as much as the hardbacks in that segment.

Yes, you could think it is all doom and gloomy…and the “only paper books are real books” hardliners could start doing their “I told you so!” dance.

I think there are two major contributing factors to these numbers which don’t indicate a decline in people reading e-books.

First is that so many books are published by non traditional publishers now, and they simply may not be tracked in these numbers. The AAP has never asked me how many books I’ve sold. 😉

Not even a quarter of the top twenty bestselling Kindle books in the USA are from the biggest traditional publishers.

So, even though the AAP got reports from more 1,000 publishers, I doubt that’s anywhere near the majority of e-book published each month.

It might not be a decline in e-reading; it might be an artifact of the reporting methodology.

The second big factor is the rise of at least Amazon’s subser (subscription service):

Kindle Unlimited (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*)

My guess is that the “borrows” in those programs aren’t counted…and they probably shouldn’t be, since they aren’t sales.

That might be having an impact on the measured sales, if people who would have bought an individual e-book are instead reading some of them through KU and others…that might be  an overall increase in e-book reading, although I don’t know that, of course.

My guess? E-book reading is here to stay. 🙂

Join thousands of readers and try the free ILMK magazine at Flipboard!

All aboard our new The Measured Circle’s Geek Time Trip at The History Project! Do you have what it takes to be a Timeblazer?

* I am linking to the same thing at the regular Amazon site, and at AmazonSmile. When you shop at AmazonSmile, half a percent of your purchase price on eligible items goes to a non-profit you choose. It will feel just like shopping at Amazon: you’ll be using your same account. The one thing for you that is different is that you pick a non-profit the first time you go (which you can change whenever you want)…and the good feeling you’ll get. :) Shop ’til you help! :) By the way, it’s been interesting lately to see Amazon remind me to “start at AmazonSmile” if I check a link on the original Amazon site. I do buy from AmazonSmile, but I have a lot of stored links I use to check for things.

This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in the I Love My Kindle blog. To support this or other blogs/organizations, buy  Amazon Gift Cards from a link on the site, then use those to buy your items. There will be no cost to you, and a benefit to them.

 

Round up #143: authors in bookstores, Adaptive Studios

July 27, 2016

Round up #143:Round up #143: authors in bookstores, Adaptive Studios

The ILMK Round ups are short pieces which may or may not be expanded later.

My McFarland sale bargains are great…thanks, eReaderIQ!

When I found out that there was a big sale on books from McFarland, I made sure to tell you about them…and I took advantage of it myself. 🙂

Well, it’s been long enough that I’m deep into a couple of the books (I normally read several books concurrently), and I’m very pleased!

Keep Watching the Skies by Bill Warren (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*)

is now $17.00…all of the books I’d reported were $3.99 at the time, so I had a $13.01 savings. I can’t tell you I would have bought it if it hadn’t been on a sale, but somebody might have bought it for me. 😉

It’s a listing of science fiction movies released in the USA in the 1950s. So far, I’ve seen almost all of them. From reading the book, I’ve sought out a couple and watched them.

Warren does a nice job telling us about the cast and crew outside of this movie, and pointing out trends. That’s what I picture when I think McFarland books: context.

Another one is

A History of the Doc Savage Adventures in Pulps, Paperbacks, Comics, Fanzines, Radio and Film by Robert Michael “Bobb” Cotter (at AmazonSmile*)

I’m a devoted Doc Savage fan, but I couldn’t tell you the plot of every one of the 181 original adventures…Cotter can. 🙂

I didn’t remember how political some of them are. It was interesting that in one novel, after the rise of Adolf Hitler, the USA and Germany (and others) band together, planning to disarm the rest of the world (Russia especially). Doc works against that…hopefully, Shane Black doesn’t portray Doc as a super patriot like Captain America.

That book is $9.99 now, so I saved $6.

Authors in bookstores

I have been in a bookstore (not working there…as a customer) and stumbled upon an author signing books.

It was an odd experience…I felt like I was intruding, like it was a private party between the author and the fans who went to the store to see them.

I did stay and listen, and it was fascinating.

In this BOOK RIOT article by Peter Damien

the writer describes actively avoiding the table in a similar situation.

That’s one thing that’s very hard for some authors…doing the marketing. That is just a very different feel and skill set from writing.

Turning abandoned scripts into books…and then back into movies

Hollywood (which I follow pretty closely) gets a lot of scripts. Some scripts travel around for years, perhaps being loved, but just not getting a deal together for some reason.

Movies cost a lot of money to make…the production budgets alone (not counting marketing) can be $200 million.

Books, on the other hand, are far cheaper to produce.

In this

New York Times article by Alexandra Alter and Brooks Barnes

There company, Adaptive Studios, buy those unattached scripts and turn into books…and if they do well enough, they can then turn the novels into movies.

It’s an interesting, round about path…but I’m not convinced they’ll be able to make outstanding movies. That’s never easy, and remember that these scripts  were generally already seen as difficult challenges.

I wish them luck!

What happens when publishers ignore copyright issues

This is a really interesting article in

Publishing Perspectives by Michael Healy

Healy is the Executive Director (International Relations) of the Copyright Clearance Center.

The article looks at how legal copyright changes in some countries can greatly affect publishers (and that affects readers like us, of course).

Regular readers know that I’m interested in copyright issues, and write about them from time to time in this blog.

I’ll give you a non-book example of a decision about copyright that massively changed an industry…the so-called “Betamax case”, Sony Corp. of America v. Universal City Studios, Inc. In that case, and in a split decision (you can read about it here) it was determined that consumers using video recording devices to “time shift” TV shows was Fair Use (allowed under copyright).

If the case had gone the other way (and it was close), you wouldn’t have had the giant home video market which developed. Oh, you might still have been able to buy licensed videos…I had bought Super 8MM three minute movie condensations legally. However, the reason people had recorders in their homes was to record shows, of course…which then meant they had something on which to watch those videocassettes.

The article will give you quick looks at some of the issues around the world…I recommend it.

In the USA, we could see big changes with definitive decisions about several issues:

  • “Orphan books”…ones still under copyright, but with no one to speak for them…a decision could be made that makes it legal to publish those without permission
  • Whether or not digitizing your physical copies for your own use is Fair Use…if that was a definitive yes, I think we’d get digitizing devices that were more effective than what we have now
  • Fanfic: if it was clearly ruled that publishers/authors/estates own the rights to what they have published, but not to the characters and situations (unless trademarked), that would be a game changer
  • Copyright terms: might they get longer…or shorter?

Feel free to tell me and my readers what you think about any of these issues by commenting on this post…

Join thousands of readers and try the free ILMK magazine at Flipboard!

All aboard our new The Measured Circle’s Geek Time Trip at The History Project! Do you have what it takes to be a Timeblazer?

* I am linking to the same thing at the regular Amazon site, and at AmazonSmile. When you shop at AmazonSmile, half a percent of your purchase price on eligible items goes to a non-profit you choose. It will feel just like shopping at Amazon: you’ll be using your same account. The one thing for you that is different is that you pick a non-profit the first time you go (which you can change whenever you want)…and the good feeling you’ll get. :) Shop ’til you help! :) By the way, it’s been interesting lately to see Amazon remind me to “start at AmazonSmile” if I check a link on the original Amazon site. I do buy from AmazonSmile, but I have a lot of stored links I use to check for things.

This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in the I Love My Kindle blog. To support this or other blogs/organizations, buy  Amazon Gift Cards from a link on the site, then use those to buy your items. There will be no cost to you, and a benefit to them.

 

Geekwire: Amazon secret product launch this Sunday (7/31) at midnight

July 25, 2016

Geekwire: Amazon secret product launch this Sunday (7/31) at midnight

Thanks to Len Edgerly of

The Kindle Chronicles podcast

for the heads up on this

GeekWire story by Taylor Soper

The thrust of the story is this:

Amazon Flex drivers, who are sort of like Uber drivers for Amazon packages, have been asked about an opportunity to deliver a new, secret product from midnight to 2:00 AM this upcoming Sunday (July 31st).

Fascinating!

First, this does appear to be a physical item, obviously…a digital item wouldn’t require drivers.

There is a very hot item due to be released on 7/31:

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child – Parts I & II (Special Rehearsal Edition): The Official Script Book of the Original West End Production (at AmazonSmile*))

The hardback is a physical item…that’s hardly a secret, though.

Could it be an Amazon device…maybe the rumored color Kindle EBR (E-Book Reader…not with a backlight, like a tablet or a phone)?

That is a possibility, although Amazon usually does pre-orders on something like that . They could, though, do a limited, first come , first served sort of thing…maybe limited to Prime members, maybe even only on a limited special offer on Fire devices.

If that group was sort of like a “beta” group, seen as doing the testing, that might mitigate the bad feeling some people had about the Amazon Echo roll-out, where some customers who ordered it waited months.

If it’s a new Amazon device, I could see it being an augmented or Virtual Reality headset…I’ve speculated about that before. If it tied into Pokémon Go, that could get a lot of publicity.

I find it unlikely that it would be an EBR or a tablet…they have had a way of doing those before, and this isn’t it.

I would guess it is something technologically complex, that will have a non-Amazon supply chain, where Amazon wants feedback before a general release.

Is there a non-Amazon item it could be?

I can’t think of anything big enough…hm, Microsoft Hololens?

What do you think? What will be this “secret product” (if it reallv happens…intuition is that it will) be?

Feel free to tell me and my readers what you think by commenting on this post.

Join thousands of readers and try the free ILMK magazine at Flipboard!

All aboard our new The Measured Circle’s Geek Time Trip at The History Project! Do you have what it takes to be a Timeblazer?

* I am linking to the same thing at the regular Amazon site, and at AmazonSmile. When you shop at AmazonSmile, half a percent of your purchase price on eligible items goes to a non-profit you choose. It will feel just like shopping at Amazon: you’ll be using your same account. The one thing for you that is different is that you pick a non-profit the first time you go (which you can change whenever you want)…and the good feeling you’ll get. :) Shop ’til you help! :) By the way, it’s been interesting lately to see Amazon remind me to “start at AmazonSmile” if I check a link on the original Amazon site. I do buy from AmazonSmile, but I have a lot of stored links I use to check for things.

This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in the I Love My Kindle blog. To support this or other blogs/organizations, buy  Amazon Gift Cards from a link on the site, then use those to buy your items. There will be no cost to you, and a benefit to them.

So, that worked: how Kindle Worlds got me to watch The 100

July 23, 2016

So, that worked: how Kindle Worlds got me to watch The 100

A lot of people wondered why mainstream rightsholders would license properties to Amazon’s

Kindle Worlds (at AmazonSmile: support a non-profit of your choice by shopping*)

This innovative programsees Amazon act effectively as the bridge between people who own the rights to intellectually property (like a movie, TV show, or book series) and writers who would like to create new stories in those worlds.

The rightsholder gets a cut, the author gets a cut, and Amazon gets a cut.

The rightsholder is able to put up guidelines, but they don’t approve the individual works.

Certainly, you can see how there could be some risk there. There’s nothing that prevents an author from writing a poor story, or one that is distinctly non-canonical (creating a romance between two characters when there isn’t one in the real series, or killing major characters). It’s possible a reader will encounter a KW version first, and then decide not to read the others.

I think that’s not very likely, though. I think most people will understand that KW is not official…still, the risk isn’t zero.

For Disney, a company famously (some would say overzealously) protective of their characters, I don’t think they’ll tend to take that risk. That’s why, even though the Marvel Universe and Star Wars are amongst the most requested properties, my best guess is that we aren’t going to get those.

Some companies, though, perhaps with younger-skewing audiences, seem to believe that “fanfic” (fan fiction) and other forms of fan engagement can be beneficial to a brand. This isn’t traditional fanfic, but it’s in the same neighborhood, even if not living on the same street. 😉

That additional engagement can have a synergistic effect. Someone who reads a KW work may buy the main series…or another form of licensed content.

That happened with me recently…actually, I didn’t even read the KW books, I just noticed they existed.

That upped my awareness of

The 100 by Kass Morgan (at AmazonSmile*)

It’s a young adult, post-apocalyptic science fiction series.

It’s also a show on the CW.

I had an afternoon where I was going to work on some things in the house, and I wanted something to “background binge”…a TV series that will go from episode to episode for me, and not one where I want to necessarily pay attention to every word. I can write, exercise, and do some household chores with the TV on like that…in fact, I do them better. 🙂

So, I saw on Netflix on my

Amazon Fire TV (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*)

that they had The 100 (from the first episode).

It was worth a try. 🙂

It is a bit soapy, and has a cast with a lot of young, traditionally attractive people (in other words, it’s a CW show) ;), but I’ve found that it’s worth watching. There have been some good set pieces, and it has a complex (but not convoluted or overly mythologized) plot. It’s also well designed for binging, with one episode flowing nicely into the next.

I’m pretty sure I wouldn’t have started watching it if I didn’t know it was in KW, which gave it a certain amount of legitimacy.

I had also added it to

 The Measured Circle’s Geek Time Trip at The History Project

and when I did that, I could see there was some significant fandom. I typically add links to streaming and public library searches for non-public domain works like this, a link to a Twitter search, Google news search, and so on. Some have a lot; some don’t. I certainly put things in TMCGTT that don’t have much: those are fun, too!

Now, the obvious question: did this get me to read the Kass Morgan books?

If they had been in

Kindle Unlimited (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*)

I would have.  😉

In an exception for books published by Amazon, even the KW books aren’t in Kindle Unlimited…probably, that would complicate things with the rightsholders.

Regardless, it worked: KW got me to view the TV series…and somebody got paid for that.

That’s why I still think we may see some older properties that are harder to monetize: The Addams Family, Get Smart, Lost in Space…I might write in any of those, among many others. Maybe with the new Doc Savage movie starring Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, we’ll get that…but they might be too protective and there is a currently licensed book series happening already.

I think it helps a fictional property to be open to new ideas. Superman wouldn’t fly if it wasn’t that the Fleischers requested it, to make it easier to animate in an old cartoon series (when Supes could “leap tall buildings in a single bound”, they had to show take-off and landing, and, well, it’s more dramatic if Superman can hover and change directions).

What do you think? Are you reading Kindle Worlds? Has that inspired you to read/view the original property…or discouraged you from doing it? Feel free to tell me and my readers what you think by commenting on this post.

Join thousands of readers and try the free ILMK magazine at Flipboard!

All aboard our new The Measured Circle’s Geek Time Trip at The History Project! Do you have what it takes to be a Timeblazer?

* I am linking to the same thing at the regular Amazon site, and at AmazonSmile. When you shop at AmazonSmile, half a percent of your purchase price on eligible items goes to a non-profit you choose. It will feel just like shopping at Amazon: you’ll be using your same account. The one thing for you that is different is that you pick a non-profit the first time you go (which you can change whenever you want)…and the good feeling you’ll get. :) Shop ’til you help! :) By the way, it’s been interesting lately to see Amazon remind me to “start at AmazonSmile” if I check a link on the original Amazon site. I do buy from AmazonSmile, but I have a lot of stored links I use to check for things.

This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in the I Love My Kindle blog. To support this or other blogs/organizations, buy  Amazon Gift Cards from a link on the site, then use those to buy your items. There will be no cost to you, and a benefit to them.

Book highlights at San Diego Comic-Con 2016

July 21, 2016

Book highlights at San Diego Comic-Con 2016

We are now officially into

San Diego Comic-Con International 2016

While it is putatively about comic books, and most of the press coverage will be about movies and TV, the annual “extravaFANza” (so to speak) also has events specific to books.

I’m not going to be there (I’ve never been to an SDCC, although I’ve been to other cons), but I thought I’d list a few of the book-related highlights for people who are…or who are just interested.

I’m going to give you first a more detailed listing for today (since you might not have much time to plan if you are there), then just list some topics.

Thursday

  • Comic-Con How-To: Plot Structure: The Philosophy Behind Story Creation (Maxwell Alexander Drake) | Thursday 10:00 AM Room 2
  • Kareem Abdul-Jabbar’s Mycroft (Kareen Abdul-Jabbar) | Thursday 12:00 PM Room 5AB (while this is a graphic novel, I thought I’d mention it because of the Sherlock Holmes connection)
  • New Authors Making a Splash in the Literary Pool (Alwyn Hamilton, Keira Drake, Sylvain Neuvel, Bob Proehl, Todd Lockwood, K.S. Merbeth: moderator Maryelizabeth Yturralde) | Thursday 12:00 P Room 32AB
  • The Smitten Word: Romancing the Reader (Sylvia Day, Nalini Singh, Chloe Neil, Tessa Dare: moderator HelenKay Dimon) | Thursday 12:00 PM Horton Grand Theatre
  • CBLDF: Navigating the Powers & Perils of Banned Books | Thursday 12:00 PM Room 30CDE
  • Hey, You Got Science In My Fiction (Patricia Black, Blake Crouch, Christopher Farnsworth, Patrick Hemstreet, Leah Thomas, Andy Weir ((The Martian)): moderator Brendan Reichs) | Thursday 1:00 PM Room 32AB
  • Nerd Trivia Challenge: Author Edition (Patrick Rothfuss, Pierce Brown, Romina Russell, Cuck Wendig, Sam Sykes, Cecil Castellucci, V.E Schwab, Camila D’Errico, Duane Swierczynski: moderator Brandon T. Snider) | Thursday 1:30 PM Horton Grand Theatre (authors compete in trivia)
  • Making the Leap to Creator Owned Properties: Tales from the IP Jungle (Frank Cho, Terry Dodson, Mark Schultz, Wendy and Richard Pini: moderator: John Fleskes) | Thursday 3:00 PM Room 28DE
  • Retellings & Remixes (Marissa Meyer, Renee Ahdieh, Colleen Houck, Anna Todd, Jodi Meadows, Colleen Oakes: moderator: Sam Maggs) | Thursday 4:00 PM Room 32AB
  • The Enduring Allure of Grimm’s Fairy Tales: Live Reading and Discussion (Kirby Heyborne, Jayne Entwistle, Scott Brick: moderated by Dan Zitt) | Thursday 4:30 PM Horton Grand Theatre
  • Swipe Right with Simon & Schuster (Matt Pantaliano, Jodie Hockensmith, Nicholas Elliott, Catherine Hayden, Liesa Abrams: moderator Jon Anderson) | Thursday 6:30 PM Room 4

Friday

  • Love in the time of YA
  • Queer Representation in All-Ages and Youth Media
  • Star Wars Publishing
  • Tarzan on Screen and Page
  • Shatner Singularity Universe
  • It’s the End of the…YA Series
  • Sweet Dreams Aren’t Made of These: Horror and Thriller Authors Bring Your Nightmares to Life
  • Ask-an-Agent
  • The World of Mouse Guard
  • Tolkien Fandom The Road Goes Ever On
  • The Annual International Association of Media and Tie-in Writers Award Panel
  • The Writer’s Journey: Maximizing Your Exposure in the Marketplace
  • How Old is Young Adult in Europe and the USA?
  • What’s Up with Penguin
  • 11 Secrets to Publishing Your E-Book
  • Romance in Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror

Saturday

  • I Read It Before (And After) It Was a Movie
  • Spotlight on William Gibson
  • Reading Without Walls
  • A World After Harry: The Changing Genre of YA Fantasy
  • CBLDF: Banned Books Week
  • Capturing the Imagination of Middle Grade Readers
  • What’s New from Del Rey Books
  • Stories of Imagination: Harper Voyager and Epic Reads

Sunday

  • Spotlight on Marissa Meyer
  • Fantastic Fans and Where to Find Them
  • How to Create Your Own novel: From First Idea to Publishing and What You Need to Sell  Your Work to TV and Film
  • Knock, Knock: Bestselling Kid’s Book Authors Bring the Funny
  • Creating Diverse Worlds and Cultures
  • The Secret Origin of Good Readers Break-Out Session
  • Leigh Bardugo and Gene Luen Yang in Conversation
  • KidLit Literary Agents
  • Assassin’s Creed Last Descendants Author Matthew J. Kirbyy
  • Bisexuality and Beyond: New Frontiers in Popular Culture
  • What’s Hot in Young Adult Fiction

Two four letter words with double vowels and ending in “K”? Book and geek!

Join thousands of readers and try the free ILMK magazine at Flipboard!

All aboard our new The Measured Circle’s Geek Time Trip at The History Project! Do you have what it takes to be a Timeblazer?

* I am linking to the same thing at the regular Amazon site, and at AmazonSmile. When you shop at AmazonSmile, half a percent of your purchase price on eligible items goes to a non-profit you choose. It will feel just like shopping at Amazon: you’ll be using your same account. The one thing for you that is different is that you pick a non-profit the first time you go (which you can change whenever you want)…and the good feeling you’ll get. :) Shop ’til you help! :) By the way, it’s been interesting lately to see Amazon remind me to “start at AmazonSmile” if I check a link on the original Amazon site. I do buy from AmazonSmile, but I have a lot of stored links I use to check for things.

This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in the I Love My Kindle blog. To support this or other blogs/organizations, buy  Amazon Gift Cards from a link on the site, then use those to buy your items. There will be no cost to you, and a benefit to them.

August 2016 Kindle book releases

July 21, 2016

August 2016 Kindle book releases

While I don’t generally pre-order Kindle store books myself, I know many of you do.

I understand the fun of just having the book show up, but I figure I’ll order when I want it…since I could have it within a minute, usually.…

However, it’s worth noting that pre-ordering at a low price will tend to preserve that price. Back when the Agency Model was solidly in place, Amazon couldn’t guarantee that books sold by the publishers using that structure wouldn’t go up in price after you pre-ordered them. It wasn’t likely, it was just that Amazon couldn’t control it. We have largely returned to the Agency Model, but Amazon is allowed to discount in some circumstances.

These aren’t necessarily the most popular of the pre-orders…I’m just going to list ones that catch my eye. Since we might not agree on that, here’s a link to the 5,799 (at time of writing an increase of 336…reversing what was a somewhat concerning trend of significantly fewer books the past two months):

August USA Kindle Store releases (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*)

Of those, by the way, 873 (143 fewer than last month…that seems worth noting, since there are also more books overall) are in

Kindle Unlimited (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*)

As usual, I won’t be deliberately linking to books which block text-to-speech access blocked**.

We’ve gone back and forth recently on whether the top four were the

Kindle First (at AmazonSmile)

picks for this month.

Amazon no longer does the “New and Popular” search as a default, but does “Featured”. Presumably, a human being picks those titles in some way…and the list is clearly not the same.  This month, continuing last month’s trend, Kindle First books aren’t dominating the top slots..

The other thing is that some of those Kindle Unlimited titles are way up on the list. I’m concerned (and I’ve alerted Amazon about it) that people are confused: they think they are pre-ordering a KU borrow, when they are actually pre-ordering a purchase. In other words, they may be thinking they’ll get the book at no additional cost, and actually be charged for it. Amazon has confirmed for me: you can not pre-order a borrow from KU.

June is a big release month for books (not unlike movies)…summer vacation is here, and books for “grads and Dads” are also big.

Okay, books!

  • Six Scary Stories by Stephen King
  • Random Acts: A Joanna Brady and Ali Reynolds Novella (Kindle Single) by J. A. Jance
  • A Great Reckoning: A Novel (Chief Inspector Gamache Novel) by Louise Penny
  • Doubt (Caroline Auden Book 1) by C. E. Tobisman
  • Sweet Tomorrows: A Rose Harbor Novel by Debbie Macomber
  • Monster Hunter Memoirs: Grunge by Larry Correia and John Ringo
  • Three Sisters, Three Queens by Philippa Gregory
  • Living for Change: An Autobiography by Grace Lee Boggs
  • Damaged: A Novel (A Rosato & DiNunzio Novel) by Lisa Scottoline
  • Curious Minds: A Knight and Moon Novel by Janet Evanovich and Phoef Sutton
  • The Daughter of Union County by Francine Thomas Howard
  • The Girl with the Lower Back Tattoo by Amy Schumer
  • A Time of Torment: A Charlie Parker Thriller by John Connolly
  • Pokemon Go: Hack Your Way To The Top (Unofficial Pokemon Go Guide Book Book 1) by Level Thirty and Pokemon Go
  • Bullseye by James Patterson
  • The Jealous Kind: A Novel (A Holland Family Novel) by James Lee Burke
  • Batman Noir: The Killing Joke (Batman: The Killing Joke)Aug 9, 2016
    by Alan Moore and Brian Bolland
  • Travels in Alaska by John Muir
  • The Swarm: The Second Formic War (Volume 1)Aug 2, 2016 | Kindle eBook
    by Orson Scott Card and Aaron Johnston
  • Rocket Raccoon and Groot Vol. 1: Tricks of the Trade (Rocket Raccoon and Groot (2016-)) by Skottie Young and Filipe Andrade
  • A-Z of Curious Suffolk by Sarah Doig
  • Life Behind Barbed Wire: The World War II Internment Memoirs of a Hawaii Issei by Yasutaro Soga and Tetsuden Kashima
  • A Is for Atom: A Midcentury Alphabet by Greg Paprocki
  • Science Fiction, Fantasy, and Politics: Transmedia World-Building Beyond Capitalism (Radical Cultural Studies by Dan Hassler-Forest
  • Captain Marvel Vol. 1: Rise of Alpha Flight (Captain Marvel (2016-)) by Michele Fazekis and Tara Butters
  • Literary London by Eloise Millar and Sam Jordison
  • The Word Collector by Alexandria Nolan

Feel free to suggest other books being released in August in the USA Kindle store. If you are the author, or are otherwise connected with the production or publishing of the book, I’d appreciate you saying so. That won’t stop me from publishing the comment, but it should be in your own words and not an ad.

Enjoy!

Join thousands of readers and try the free ILMK magazine at Flipboard!

All aboard our new The Measured Circle’s Geek Time Trip at The History Project!

* I am linking to the same thing at the regular Amazon site, and at AmazonSmile. When you shop at AmazonSmile, half a percent of your purchase price on eligible items goes to a non-profit you choose. It will feel just like shopping at Amazon: you’ll be using your same account. The one thing for you that is different is that you pick a non-profit the first time you go (which you can change whenever you want)…and the good feeling you’ll get. :) Shop ’til you help! :)

** A Kindle/Fire with text-to-speech can read any text downloaded to it…unless that access is blocked by the publisher inserting code into the file to prevent it. That’s why you can have the device read personal documents to you (I’ve done that). I believe that this sort of access blocking disproportionately disadvantages the disabled, although I also believe it is legal (provided that there is at least one accessible version of each e-book available, however, that one can require a certification of disability). For that reason, I don’t deliberately link to books which block TTS access here (although it may happen accidentally, particularly if the access is blocked after I’ve linked it). I do believe this is a personal decision, and there  are legitimate arguments for purchasing those books.

This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in the I Love My Kindle blog. To support this or other blogs/organizations, buy  Amazon Gift Cards from a link on the site, then use those to buy your items. There will be no cost to you, and a benefit to them.

New Kindle Unlimited benefit (available to others to purchase): Singles Classics

July 19, 2016

New Kindle Unlimited benefit (available to others to purchase): Singles Classics

One of my favorite things I own is a rustic “magazinecase”. It holds a lot of my old issues of magazines. As I recall, I bought it for $5 from some place going out of business decades ago.

20160719_063332

As you can see, it isn’t fancy…but it’s a place for me to organize my magazines.

That’s a problem with magazines: organization.

Some times, I just want to find one particular story I remember reading a long time ago. There was a great interview with David Bowie that I recall. I don’t even remember which magazine it was in for sure.

It’s even a thing in the cryptozoology world. Many of us who are interested in that subject, including me, remember seeing a 19th Century (?) photo of a dead thunderbird (basically, a giant raptor)…but no one can find it. It’s possible it didn’t exist and we are remembering something else. I thought I was going to solve that mystery by going through my old Argosy magazines…literally flipping through them page by page.  I didn’t find it. 🙂

There are books that collect old magazine stories and articles…and it’s like archaeologists uncovering a lost tomb.

I include links (so you can read them) to some public domain magazines in

 The Measured Circle’s Geek Time Trip at The History Project

and I’m trying to tag them in such a way that people can find stories…but that’s going to be imperfect.

That’s why I’m really excited about a new Amazon feature announced in this

press release

about

www.amazon.com/singlesclassics (Single Classics) (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*)

I never much got into Kindle Singles, which were sort  of meant to parallel music 45s from the old days…shorter, self-contained content. I just couldn’t see paying ninety-nine cents for one, most of the time, when that

can get you a full-sized book so easily.

Well, with this new Single Classics, it brings us two things.

One is that it is resurrecting older articles…and making them easy to find. Some categories include:

  • TIME Magazine Classic Coverage
  • The Playboy Interviews
  • Classics by Popular and Best-Selling Authors

I recognize some of the articles.

These are going to be great when you are waiting for something, or at lunch, or with text-to-speech in the car (I checked, and what I checked was not blocked…of course, you might miss some pictures that way).

The other thing is that although these are generally ninety-nine cents to purchase, they are included in

Kindle Unlimited (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*)

at no additional cost.

Yay!

That’s  yet another reason to consider KU, Amazon’s subser (subscription service). You can read books (including well-known ones), listen to audiobooks, and now read these articles and stories.

I don’t know what Amazon is paying for this, but it’s also going to help them by providing that enticement for KU (which I think will make people more loyal Amazon customers…if that’s possible) 😉 and will count as the ten you can have out at a time. It may mean that Amazon pays less in royalties, while customers still feel they are getting a benefit.

I’m also not surprised that rightsholders got on board! It’s a new revenue stream for something which I’m sure is hard to monetize.

What do you think? Does this interest you at all? Will you pay ninety-nine cents for one of these? Would you use it to write school papers? Is it going to get you to try the free trial of KU? How much of your reading is short form which didn’t originate on the internet? Feel free to tell me and my readers what you think by commenting on this post.

Join thousands of readers and try the free ILMK magazine at Flipboard!

All aboard our new The Measured Circle’s Geek Time Trip at The History Project! Do you have what it takes to be a Timeblazer?

* I am linking to the same thing at the regular Amazon site, and at AmazonSmile. When you shop at AmazonSmile, half a percent of your purchase price on eligible items goes to a non-profit you choose. It will feel just like shopping at Amazon: you’ll be using your same account. The one thing for you that is different is that you pick a non-profit the first time you go (which you can change whenever you want)…and the good feeling you’ll get. :) Shop ’til you help! :) By the way, it’s been interesting lately to see Amazon remind me to “start at AmazonSmile” if I check a link on the original Amazon site. I do buy from AmazonSmile, but I have a lot of stored links I use to check for things.

This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in the I Love My Kindle blog. To support this or other blogs/organizations, buy  Amazon Gift Cards from a link on the site, then use those to buy your items. There will be no cost to you, and a benefit to them.

Free Fire tablet with 6 month subscription to Texture

July 18, 2016

 Free Fire tablet with 6 month subscription to Texture

Way back in 2007 when the Kindle was first released (at a price of about $400), people were wondering if Amazon would give away a Kindle with some kind of purchase of books.

Well, this current promotion is a bit similar, although there have been significant changes since. This limited time offer gets you a

free Fire tablet with 6 month subscription to Texture

What’s Texture?

It’s primarily an all you can read magazine service, with over 175 magazines, including many of the best known ones (People, Entertainment Weekly, Forbes, Essence, Rolling Stone, Vegetarian Times…).

These are not going to work on a Kindle EBR (E-Book Reader), but would work on the Fire tablet you would get with it.

Six months is $89.95…if you don’t cancel, there will be an automatic renewal.

Seems like a nice thing to have around…even if you aren’t supplying a doctor’s waiting room. 😉

Here’s Amazon’s top level summary of the deal:

To receive the Buy Texture Premium Subscription, Get One Free Fire 7” Tablet with Special Offers (8 GB or 16 GB) offer, follow the instructions below:

  • Purchase and activate a qualifying 6-month subscription to Texture Premium on Amazon.com.
  • If you do not cancel your 6-month Texture Premium subscription in the 7 day period following your purchase, you will receive a promotional code via email directly from Texture approximately 8 days after your purchase. Customers who cancel their subscriptions within 7 days of purchase are not eligible to receive the promotional code. Important: You must have activated your subscription to receive your promotional code.
  • Add a Fire 7″ tablet with Special Offers (either 8 GB or 16 GB) to your order by selecting “1” in the “Qty” dropdown on the product information page when adding to your Shopping Cart. Select options on the configuration page and click “Add to Cart.” Add your promotional code at checkout and a discount in the amount of one free Fire tablet with Special Offers will be applied.

This is while supplies last, and I don’t know how long the deal will be available. I’m guessing this is USA only.

Interestingly, Amazon isn’t doing the deal, Texture is. So, this doesn’t suggest a free Kindle with a

Kindle Unlimited (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*)

six month subscription…but if it does well, it might inspire Amazon. 🙂

If you’ve thought about trying a tablet or e-Magazines, this is an opportunity for you. If you just want another tablet, maybe for a family member, this works for that, too.  😉

Join thousands of readers and try the free ILMK magazine at Flipboard!

All aboard our new The Measured Circle’s Geek Time Trip at The History Project! Do you have what it takes to be a Timeblazer?

* I am linking to the same thing at the regular Amazon site, and at AmazonSmile. When you shop at AmazonSmile, half a percent of your purchase price on eligible items goes to a non-profit you choose. It will feel just like shopping at Amazon: you’ll be using your same account. The one thing for you that is different is that you pick a non-profit the first time you go (which you can change whenever you want)…and the good feeling you’ll get. :) Shop ’til you help! :) By the way, it’s been interesting lately to see Amazon remind me to “start at AmazonSmile” if I check a link on the original Amazon site. I do buy from AmazonSmile, but I have a lot of stored links I use to check for things.

This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in the I Love My Kindle blog. To support this or other blogs/organizations, buy  Amazon Gift Cards from a link on the site, then use those to buy your items. There will be no cost to you, and a benefit to them.


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