Edan Lepucki’s novel, California, will launch next week as one of the most pre-ordered debuts in the history of the publisher Little, Brown. It has become, in recent weeks, an unintentional emblem of the war that Amazon is currently waging on Little, Brown’s parent company, Hachette, as the focus of a campaign by Stephen Colbert to “not lick [Amazon’s] monopoly boot” by pre-ordering it from independent bookstores. In some ways, it’s a fitting choice, since it tells the story of a couple, Frida and Cal, making their way in the world after the collapse of society as we know it. But it’s about much more—love, marriage, [...]
My understanding of what it means to be a publisher has been skewed ever since I first heard the word. My mom was reading A Wrinkle in Time to me—I must have been around 8—when she explained that my great-grandfather had published the book. She told me how Madeleine L'Engle had taken the story of Meg Murry, Charles Wallace, and Calvin O’Keefe to publisher after publisher, only to repeatedly be rejected. After being turned down by 26 or so houses, the book came to my mom’s grandfather, who read it and loved it, but "was afraid of it," L'Engle later said. He did say he would buy the book, [...]
BUST magazine operates out of a loft on 27th street and Broadway, above an awning that says Reiko Wireless Accessories. On the evening I visited, a bit before Christmas, young staffers rode up with me in the elevator, sharing swigs from a plastic bottle of whiskey. In the office they broke away, laughing and chatting, settling down at computers underneath walls covered in posters and stickers. One featured a giant image of Joan Crawford from Whatever Happened to Baby Jane? and the text "BUST Magazine says no wire hangers ever!"
The magazine's editor in chief, Debbie Stoller, was in a state. She waved me to the conference room in [...]
From time to time, The Awl offers its space to everyday citizens with something to say.
Another day, another battle between some country with publishing laws and America's top advertising company, Google. Now it's Portugal complaining about Google being an Internet business—the same Portugal that is usually in the news for causing the latest worldwide financial panic. Whenever I see stocks are plunging these days, I pretty much know without checking CNBC that Portugal is up to no good again. The other day my boss made a joke and said, "What is this Cyprus place, anyway? Some breakaway autonomous zone of Portugal?" And he might be right, who even [...]
If you enjoy reading Kindle-brand electronic books on your iPhone or iPad, you've surely had moments when the best idea seems to be just erasing all your ebooks. There's something about the shoddy copy-editing and optical-character-recognition errors and lame single jpeg of cover art and terribly rendered illustrations that really puts a spotlight on the bad corporate non-fiction titles you've somehow spent $13 a piece to accumulate "in the cloud." Wouldn't it just be better if Kindle developed a "killer app" that would erase all of this garbage?
"In shipping the latest version, apparently the company's QA testers somehow missed a bug that can delete your entire book collection from [...]
If you're the kind of lifelong dupe who bought a book by Lance Armstrong, there's really no helping you. But, still, the wheels of justice must turn, etc., and both law firms and the U.S. Postal Service depend upon those bulk-mailed class-action suit notices. So a couple of consumers in California have gone to federal court in hopes of making a big deal over the long-known truth about Lance Armstrong, the professional drug dealer and sports cheat.
Rob Stutzman and several others who bought Armstrong's "It's Not About The Bike" and "Every Second Counts" have filed a lawsuit in Sacramento federal court. It alleges Armstrong duped them into believing [...]