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Self-publishing News: Blasting Through!

Self-publishing News: Blasting Through!

Dan Holloway head and shoulders photo

I have been catching up with the latest news on the fly having had a couple of days out researching the latest edition of “shoehorning my life into an ill-fitting metaphor for the indie author’s world.” I only had two nights away (hey, I’m a poet, holidays are what happen to other people) but they were great, and very different. We spent a night away lounging in the grounds of a beautiful country house hotel. And a second night in a tiny room on the bustling seafront of my favourite city, Brighton. It’s one of the great things about life that two experiences can be equally enjoyable and yet as different as, say, high fantasy and police procedural. Rather like indie literature, in fact.

Copyright – and a very useful tool

Carol Highsmith, self-portrait. Image via Wikimedia Commons

Carol Highsmith, self-portrait. Image via Wikimedia Commons

Well, it wouldn’t be the news without a paragraph on copyright, would it? And this week it really is the big news. I have several items on the subject, so what better place to start than this excellent round-up of what’s been happening so far this year. OK, so now you’re caught up on what’s been happening around the world, here’s the big one. Carol Highsmith might be a photographer not a writer, but this story affects us all. Highsmith chose to give over 18,000 of her photographs to the public domain. It was only when she used one of them on her website that she realised something was wrong – Getty Images slapped a violation notice on her and demanded $120. You can read the full text (including maths) of her $1billion (you read that right) lawsuit on the linked article. This affects – anyone who uses images, anyone who produces images, and anyone pretty much who produces any content – it’s not just the torrenting sites to keep an eye on. But when your work *does* appear on a search somewhere you’re not expecting and haven’t authorised, this fabulous site, Blasty (thanks to Henry Hyde for the link), offers a one click expedited action to get the link taken down from Google (this isn’t a cease and desist for the site, but it is a great way of choking off the oxygen). All of which means that this fascinating lawsuit that seeks to overturn a ban on the breaking of DRM on created content is just the last of many fascinating reads.

Self-publishing in Germany

That was all rather heavy. This piece is really rather fun. And very informative. It contains a series of interactive graphs showing the changing state of self-publishing in Germany in the past 4 years. The information is pulled from a survey of over 1000 self-published authors.

More Indie Success

As indies celebrate more commercial success with Vi Keeland’s Bossman topping the New York Times Ebook bestsellers list, this nicely detailed piece in Quartz charts the massive successes of women in self-publishing. There’s lots of information here, as well as a lot of reasons for indies to celebrate.

Audiobooks and ISBNs

Nielsen-LogoVery interesting news for those in the UK and Ireland is that Nielsen, who supply ISBNs are launching a one stop store for self-publishers. No news as yet on any actual change in price, but sign up here to keep abreast of developments including the imminent launch. The store will offer enhanced services and marketing options as well as single and multiple ISBN purchases. Meanwhile this very interesting piece in the Wall Street Journal highlights the rise of the audiobook, which it claims is the fastest-growing format going. Figures take us up to the end of 2015 so while as up to date as you will get in most places, they have yet to encounter the consequences of the recent announcements we have brought you about the rise of audiobook subscription and streaming services.

And finally

Just some of the thousands of Moleskines that form part of Brooklyn Art Museum's Sketchbook Project

Just some of the thousands of Moleskines that form part of Brooklyn Art Museum’s Sketchbook Project

It wouldn’t be right to go the week without a tech story. This week what caught the eye was not future-gazing but a fascinating piece of history. This article gives a wonderful account of the birth of e-ink, the invention that, possibly more than any other, enabled the indie revolution. And while we’re on the subject of Things We Love, how many of our bucket lists will just have expanded thanks to this announcement that Moleskine, every writer’s temptation of choice, have just opened a cafe in Milan. And on the subject of Moleskine and self-publishing, I have long been a supporter of Brooklyn Art Museum’s Sketchbook Project, which supports a very special kind of self-publishing – follow the details here and submit your completed Moleskine to a cultural archive of real life and digitised wonderfulness that will last for generations.

Upcoming conferences and events

JULY 2016

South African Book Fair: July 29 – 31 [Johannesburg, South Africa]

AUGUST 2016

Writer’s Digest Conference, Aug. 12–14 [ New York City] Beijing International Book Fair, Aug 24-28 [Beijing]

SEPTEMBER 2016

Historical Novel Society Sept 2-4 [Oxford, UK] Kentucky Women Writers Conference,  Sept. 16–17 [Lexington] Triskele Lit Fest, Sept 17 [London] Word on the Street, Sept. 25 [Toronto, Canada] RomCon, Sept. 30–Oct. 1 [Denver] Chicago Writers Conference, Sept. 23-25 [Chicago]

OCTOBER 2016

Frankfurt Book Fair, Oct. 19–23 [Frankfurt, Germany] Frankfurt Book Fair Indie Author Fringe, Oct. 12 [Online Conference]

(The above list may not include all the major events; please feel free to email us with any important ones we’ve missed out, or include in comments below.)

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This Post Has 8 Comments
  1. Sadly the SA Book Fair was cancelled earlier this year. The website you linked to is one from the 2015 event. PASA (the body responsible for the fair) state that there will be one in 2017 although no announcement has been made yet.

  2. I’ll have to take your word for it that the German infographics were fun, Dan.

    My tourist German wasn’t up to making sense of the data, and as it was image-based I couldn’t even run it through Google translate for a rough idea.

    I somehow suspect of the original post had been targetted at trad-pub then Publishing Perspectives might have made a bit more effort to make the data accessible.

    After a great start with Porter Anderson at the helm, Publishing Perspectives seems to be losing focus.

    1. My German (from a Theology and Philosophy degree where you had to if not speak then at least read German) was up to it but yes, frustrating. I did think it was nice to have something that wasn’t so Anglocentric though for ALLi’s German members

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Dan Holloway

Dan Holloway is a novelist, poet and spoken word artist. He is the MC of the performance arts show The New Libertines, which has appeared at festivals and fringes from Manchester to Stoke Newington. In 2010 he was the winner of the 100th episode of the international spoken prose event Literary Death Match, and earlier this year he competed at the National Poetry Slam final at the Royal Albert Hall. His latest collection, The Transparency of Sutures, is available for Kindle at http://www.amazon.co.uk/Transparency-Sutures-Dan-Holloway-ebook/dp/B01A6YAA40

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