Bill O’Reilly Lost More Than A Job

By now you’re aware that Bill O’Reilly is no longer on Fox News. I imagine you’re also aware that he’s one of the most prolific authors writing today. That may soon be changing.

Publishing is like anything else, a business. It’s about money. While at Fox News he had millions of people to promote his books to. He was able to sell a great number of books this way. But that could be changing. After it became publicly known that his employer had paid out millions of dollars to settle sexual harassment allegations made against O’Reilly he was taken off the air.

His book sales saw an immediate downturn. His forthcoming book has not been pulled, though one can only wonder how much longer his publisher will be willing to release new books written by him if the financial numbers are no longer there.

The topic of his publisher standing behind him after the allegations came to light may surprise some, but not me. It’s all about the money.

Amazon is Still Causing Heartache for Publishers

We’ve all used Amazon. Some of us more than others. I imagine most of us are aware of the site’s option to buy with 1 click, right? I never use it, but I know it’s there. Now Amazon is allowing third party sellers to bid for the buy with 1 click option. Which isn’t new at all. Amazon has allowed this for other products but had excluded books. No longer.

What this means is that a third party could potentially be the first option to buy on the product page rather than the copy of the book Amazon purchased from the publisher.

My problem with this whole thing isn’t with Amazon. It’s with book publishers thinking they’re so much better than every other business. I’ve bought so many different products on Amazon when the first option is a third party seller and there was an option to buy from Amazon too. Publishers publish books to make money. THE END. Let’s not be fooled by their crying over not being the first option on Amazon.

How come publishers aren’t attacking Half Price Books? Their books are being sold by the hundreds of thousands or maybe even millions, and they aren’t seeing a dime from those sales. But Amazon is the bad guy. Like always.

NY Review of Books’ Founding Editor has Died

Robert Silvers was the founding editor of one of the most known book reviews. He stayed in the position of editor for more than 50 years.

I don’t know him, but I know the importance of book reviews. I’m not the biggest fan of writing or reading them, but that doesn’t mean the importance is any lesser. Books, like any form of entertainment, need reviews. The entire idea behind Goodreads is to give the everyday reader a chance to share their thoughts on books.

Take a moment to recognize how important book reviews are, and then how important it would have been more than 50 years ago to start a book review. 

President and First Lady Obama Just Signed a Book Deal for How Much!?

This was inevitable. Everyone knew President Obama would sign a massive book deal once out of office. But my goodness! The reported numbers are astonishing.

Reports indicate the Obamas’ joint book deal is worth $65 million dollars! I’ve never heard of such a lucrative deal. Not for presidents or politicians or celebrities or anyone. And people wonder why first-time authors struggle to even get a publishing contract. The majority of their profits will be donated to charity.

Penguin Random House has proven that publishing deals aren’t always about what they’ll be able to make off of it. But then first-time authors will still get an advance of $2000 and no marketing. But eh.

What’s the craziest thing you’ve ever heard come out of publishing?

They Pulled it!

Who pulled what? Let me tell ya. Simon & Schuster has decided NOT to publish Milo’s forthcoming book Dangerous. I can’t believe it.

Over the weekend a recording surfaced of Milo speaking about homosexuality and pedophilia, among other things. He later tried to backtrack his own statements but it wasn’t sufficient in the eyes of the publisher.

I’ve heard part of the recording and it sounds as bad as you’d imagine. He can blame poor word choice but we shouldn’t accept anything that even remotely appears to be in favor of sexual abuse.

He was also uninvited to speak at CPAC.

I’ve only heard of a book being pulled from publication or from store shelves once. This is big.

A Second Book Idea?

Could it be? Have I finally thought of a new book idea? Yes.

A little back story here. I self-published my book more than three years ago. I didn’t come out of college with the goal of securing a good job or traveling the world, I came out with the single goal of writing a book. Some of you will recall the original name of this blog as Write me a Book, John!.

After I published my book I immediately began work on book 2. Cause I’m obviously a prolific author. I soon realized the second time around was different. The drive simply wasn’t there and the story itself wasn’t clicking. I made it about 30,000 words into that first draft of my second book when I abandoned it. My memory tells me I wrote myself into a corner I couldn’t get out of.

Early yesterday morning I came up with a new idea. And who knows, maybe I’ll get started on it sometime soon.

There are plenty of writers out there better than me. Better stories. Better ideas. Better writing backgrounds. Which means I have plenty of room for improvement. Leggo.

What do you do when you’re discouraged with your writing? I did nothing and it’s cost me nearly four years.

2016 Reading Challenge: MY BOOK

I’m sure you’ve noticed by now that I’m in the midst of a mad dash to complete my 2016 reading challenge. I finished two more books over the weekend to see if I can ultimately complete it.

But today I’m talking about MY BOOK. I wonder if I’m making history right now by reviewing my own work. Hm. Anyway, let’s go.

Divided Within is set in and around Houston and follows Andrew Banks as he works his first case as a private investigator. His first client happens to be a teenage girl who suspects there’s something really wrong between her parents that they aren’t telling her about, only it’s much worse than she could have imagined.

A little history before I get into the good stuff. I wrote the book over the course of the first months immediately after I graduated from college in 2013.

Although it’s my own work, I still had problems with it. The first thing I noticed is I obviously forgot how to use commas. Seriously. I’m not sure what was going on. There were commas where there should have been periods and then there was nothing where there should have been commas. Ugh.

The other thing I didn’t really like after my reread was the language. It was unoriginal. It’s a crime novel, but I felt I used cussing at weird points in the story. I don’t feel like it worked.

The other thing that I definitely recognize, though I still don’t have a problem with is the story. I won’t get into the specifics because some of you all might actually want to give it a read now, but one of the complaints I received when I first published the book was that the story was unbelievable. And it is. But I’ll keep saying it over and over again that I don’t read any fiction to read something that’s entirely realistic. If that’s what I want then I’ll watch the news.

After more than three years my favorite aspect of the book is still Andrew and Sydney. I found a few points in which I didn’t like their dialogue, but their relationship is great. So many detectives have a new love interest every other book, but not Banks. You know that just from reading this first book.

I still find it crazy that I wrote this thing, but I did and it’s mine. It satisfied the requirement to read a self-published book for my 2016 reading challenge.

Have YOU read it!? Have you ever tried to review your own work?

Who is Getting Their Own Literary Imprint?

We know big time authors get their own imprints after years of massive sales numbers. And sometimes celebrities get them, though the reasoning for them is a bit less clear to me. James Patterson. Rick Riordan. There’s no complaint about them. But Derek Jeter? More questionable. And now there’s a new name to the list. Sarah Jessica Parker. Welp.

I’ve never read anything about her interest in books. Some celebrities write a bunch. Some are avid readers. Some tackle literacy initiatives. But I’ve never come across anything describing her doing these things at a level that would lead me to believe she should be in charge of her own literary imprint.

Maybe I’m clueless. Just seems a bit strange. Publishing gets a bad rap for cozying up to super authors and celebrities and not giving hardly any first timers a chance at success. This decision will change nothing about that argument.

Also, how come Latino celebrities don’t get their own imprints?

Sarah Jessica Parker is now the head of a literary imprint. Think you could do better than her? 😂

Kickstarter for Books

If you’re familiar with Kickstarter, then you know exactly what I’m about to describe to you even before I do. Kickstarter is a crowdfunding site that allows people to pitch their project to potential backers who then decide if it’s worthy of backing. There are a number of similar sites out there.

Now there’s also Inkshares. Which is exactly the same concept, but exclusively for books. As an author you post snippets from your book on the site in an attempt to build up a following. Then ask them to help fund the project.

Two things immediately popped into my head when I read this. First, there are already so many crowdfunding sites out there that this is likely to get lost in the mix. Second, there are crowdpublishing sites run by major publishers that publish books based on ratings and reviews by readers. Readers don’t pay anything, they simply read a sample and leave feedback.

This site will likely be touted as a nice mix of traditional and self-publishing, but it isn’t. The editorial board will only edit the book if it reaches 750 backers or minimally if it reaches 250. I don’t see anything traditional about that.

I think authors would be better suited to try different platforms before this one. It just doesn’t sound like a winner to me.

Would you use Inkshares to potentially publish your book?

Publishing Infomercials?

I’ve never been one to sleep at what most might call a “normal” hour, which means if my TV is on there’s a good chance the late night infomercials are trying to sell me something. Honestly, I’ve not once bought anything after watching an infomercial. The prices are rarely reasonable in my eyes.

But last night I had my TV on and caught a glimpse of a publishing infomercial. Are those a thing now? I can’t even tell you what they were selling, though it was likely some kind of book or kit that’s supposed to give you all the self publishing secrets to success. Other infomercials are pushing a product, but I can’t imagine this self publishing whatever it was having anything of worth. It seems to me that someone is trying to capitalize on the mindset I’ve encountered so many times from those considering self publishing. Releasing something as soon as possible in order to make money as soon as possible. The TV product most definitely attacked the latter of the two.

First, have you ever bought anything after watching an infomercial? Second, would you buy a guide to self publishing after seeing it on an infomercial even though there are plenty of extensively researched guides available at your local bookstore or online?