List of all columns

Archives of Book News Roundup

Book News Roundup: A book fair for Scarecrow and a poster for Bowie

  • Scarecrow Video, the best damn video store in the whole damn world, announced yesterday that they're running a fundraiser book fair through the Northgate Barnes & Noble. Between February 20th and February 27th, a portion of the sales from every customer who presents code 11800976 when they buy books in store or online will be donated to Scarecrow. To celebrate the book fair, I'm giving a talk about books and adaptations titled "The Book Was Better but the Movie Was Shorter" on Saturday, February 20 at 1 pm. It's free. You should come. Scarecrow also made ths gorgeous poster to celebrate:

  • The New York Times has sued Powerhouse Books over the use of New York Times cover images in David Shields' most recent book, War Is Beautiful. Many are questioning the wisdom of the Times's suit; for more information, read this report by Jeff John Roberts at Fortune.

  • The American Library Association has gone back to print on the wonderful David Bowie READ poster, which features Bowie, barefoot and dressed like a teenager, leaping into the air while reading The Brothers Karamazov. The poster costs $18 and will be shipped in early February, making it an ideal Valentine's Day gift.

  • This page from Octavia Butler's notebook made the rounds on Twitter yesterday, and it is incredible:

Book News Roundup: Amazon finds a new way to screw over authors

  • The Seattle Weekly's Mark Baumgarten talks with David Brewster about his Seattle atheneum, Folio. I wrote about Folio last fall, and it's now open to the public. If you're wondering whether a paid library/coworking space is right for you, you should drop by and take a look. It's on Marion Street, between 3rd Ave and 4th Ave downtown.

  • VIDA updated their excellent list of presses run by women this week. Women still don't possess an equal share of high-profile positions in the pubishing industry; supporting these presses is a way to help correct that imbalance.

  • The people behind popular narrative horror/comedy podcast Welcome to Night Vale are branching out by launching a podcasting platform, reports the New York Times. They hope to experiment with longform serialized fiction podcasts, which sounds like a great idea.

  • Newspapers are dying. No, really.

  • Graphic novel sales in bookstores increased by 22 percent last year.

  • We've been hearing from a lot of self-published authors who are upset with Amazon lately. Author A.M. Madden has published an open letter to Amazon on her blog that lists the majority of these complaints: basically, Amazon keeps changing the rules on their self-published authors. These changes result in huge financial losses for the writers, who are locked into Amazon's ecosystem and are, therefore basically powerless. "My fans have increased, and I now have nine books published instead of just three, yet in 2015, I made less than half in royalties that I made in 2014," Madden writes. Go read the whole letter.

Book News Roundup: Write your way to a free Seattle apartment

  • An anonymous Seattle apartment building owner is running an essay contest. The winner gets to live rent-free in a "clean, comfortable place" in Queen Anne or Ballard for a year. The essays are supposed to respond to the question "How would a free apartment for one year help you reach your goals in 10 years?" in 350 words or less. You can't solve gentrification with a writing contest, but at least the odds are better than Powerball.

  • Cascadia College in Bothell is hosting a six-week course called "Innovative Cascadian Poetry." The course "delves into the geography and poetry of the Cascadia bioregion, exploring the area’s physical landscape, its cultural roots, and the innovative poetry produced there." It begins on January 25th.

  • Jeff VanderMeer's new short story is titled "Jeb Bush Is Sinking," it's published at Electric Literature, and it's fantastic, especially if you're the sort of person who has really enjoyed watching Jeb Bush squirm over the last few months.

  • Amazon is merging its original book social media site Shelfari with its other book social media site GoodReads, and at least one Shelfari user is very upset about it.

  • The January issue of The White Review — featuring works in translation — is available online. If you're looking for somwehwere to start, I very much enjoyed this weird and wonderful short story titled "Dimples."