Wading through the sea of Print-on-Demand titles, one overpriced paperback at a time--and giving you the buried treasure.
Friday, January 06, 2006
POD-dy's going on the road
No, not going poddy on the road. Sheesh.
Only in an emergency.
Anyway, January will a busy month here at POD-dy Mouth Telecommunications and Industrial Plastics. It seems I'll be hawking my own wares in a local bookstore near you. Though probably not. If you see an incredibly sexy, moderately busty, sweet-smiling and sweet-smelling, knock-your-socks-off red-head signing books at a store near you . . . well, let's just pretend it's me.
News and book reviews will continue here, though at irregular intervals. Also - keep in mind there are only three (three!) highly-coveted slots left for my first 50 picks (we'll call them the 2005 picks.) And in reality, there is only one slot left that does not have a book slated for review.
Once the fiftieth book is reviewed--and I hire a bulldozer to move all the dreck from my garage--I am going to have to close submissions until the Needle Awards are over.
Speaking of the Needle Awards . . . things are underway for what is likely going to be the greatest award ceremony ever:
Man looks at computer screen.
"Hey, Honey!" man says, "Look . . . I won a Needle award."
Woman walks over. Looks at computer screen. Yawns.
Man opens can of Budweiser. Takes a long drink.
The real reward, I hope, is what may happen as a result of being selected/winning: getting noticed by an industry pro.
I have already been pondering the dreaded selection of titles--dreaded, I say, because I will want to select more than I can. Right now, in my free time (hold on, need to catch breath from immense laughter) I am working on the pitch letter to the agents/editors to see if I can garner more industry folks who would like to read about the winners. The real goal here is to get some exposure for books that have no business buried in the clay of self-publishing; they should be in the window at B&N.
Once I get the letters out and get a tally of how many agents and editors will be seeing the materials, then I will make the selections--and will be announced here (specific date will be forthcoming.) Finally, the two editors and two agents who agreed to pick the winner will read the selected books (give these folks a month.) So we are still looking at March for the big gala extravaganza!
And thanks to all the folks wishing me well with my book tour and new release. See you Monday with treasure.
PublishAmerica and the Pulitzer Prize (strange bedfellows and then some.)
PublishAmerica recently announced the addition of an admirable author to their stable: Pulitzer Prize winner William Coughlin. Turns our Mr. Coughlin (not this William Coughlin, by the way) wrote for the L.A. Times and UPI and won the prestigious award fifteen years ago as a newspaper editor. His new book, BEYOND THE SEAS--which I can only assume is currently being edited (*giggle*) since I cannot locate it on Amazon or PA's site--seems to have found its home with the publishing giant (*chortle*).
Why would a Pulitzer Prize winner need to go the POD route? The usual explanations come to mind: inferior writing, poor knowledge of the publishing industry, alcoholism, extortion, complete deterioration of all intellectual faculties. But I would love to know--especially since he went PA.
Most likely of all, though, is the case that traditional publishers have whittled the "open slots" for new books down to an all-time low, and reserved them for commercial, low-risk titles. And once again a valued author/book gets pushed aside. It's far more important to find out why men have nipples, isn't it?
Here's a POD title that didn't stay POD for long . . .
Publishers Marketplace just listed a POD to traditional conversion for a former Authorhouse book: STREET TALK: Da Official Guide to Hip-Hop & Urban Slanguage by Randy Moe Deezy Kearse.
The title, originally published September 30, 2005, has been picked up by Carole Stuart at Barricade Books. The Authorhouse version was 700+ pages and listed at $26. You think Barricade might be able to get that price down?
It's slated for release fall 2006. Current rank on Amazon: 742,695.
Most of you are familiar with the Jacuzzi tub because it was an upgrade to your super bath or because you drank too much in one on spring break or during a mid-life crisis.
But do you know why it was invented? Candido Jacuzzi invented it specifically for his disabled son, Ken, author of this wonderful memoir.
This book tells stirring stories of this Italian family immigrating from Italy and setting up shop here in America, how they acted as pioneers in many areas of engineering (they invented the first enclosed cabin monoplane, for example), and how they survived as a family.
The story of the invention of the famous spa is interesting enough, but it is the genuine tales from the heart that make this book worth reading, hearing of how Ken survived the pain and misery of his disability and his offerings for survival and happiness. This book is well-written and a delightful read, inspiring to the end.
You will enjoy this heartwarming memoir--though you will not enjoy it affordably. It is one of those classic $32 paperbacks that make most people wince, no matter how compelling the writing or story may be. Is it worth the cash? Sure. But only you know how to control your budget.
I am an author and instructor, in that order (for now.) My debut novel (which debuted in the midlist) was released by Penguin Putnam in 2004 and my second novel was released early 2006.
As for this blog, it has been profiled in many online magazines, blogs and news stories, including the Washington Post, Entertainment Weekly, the Boston Globe, the Dallas Morning News, the LA Times and Publishers Lunch.
To answer the deluge of questions I have been receiving from publicists: I'll review pretty much anything that is good--but it better be good, or I'll never look at another one of your books again. Then I'll hunt you down. Fiction preferred (no fantasy or young adult, go easy on the science fiction.) Non-fiction should be memoir, humor, self-help. Definite no-nos: cookbooks, textbooks, porn, books without verbs. And it must be POD (no small presses.) Otherwise, email with pitch first.