Profits Spike at Random House

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

The nation's largest trade book publisher reports that its earnings, before interest and taxes, surged 72.5 percent in the first half of 2011.
Random House attributes the increase in profits to a strong performance by its bestsellers and to large ebook gains. The publisher experienced 200 percent growth in ebook sales, according to a letter Random House chairman Markus Dohle sent to employees.

Digital sales so far in 2011, have already surpassed sales for all of 2010. They account for more than 20 percent of revenue.

However, tree books remain important to the company. In his letter, Dohle said strong print sales “reminds us that the print side of our business is an indispensable contributor to our greater publishing success.”

Read the full Publishers Weekly article here.

'Temping Bella' is a 2011 PYHIAB Finalist!

Thursday, August 25, 2011

This is turning out to be an excellent day.

I received a phone call from Shirley Hailstock, president of the New Jersey Romance Writers, who informed me that my Regency manuscript, Tempting Bella, is a finalist in the 2011 NJRW's "Put Your Heart in a Book" contest.

I am thrilled! The NJRW's group is pretty special to me. I won in this category last year with my manuscript, Seducing Charlotte, and another of my manuscripts, Compromising Willa, placed second.

I think their judges get me!

The final judges, who will choose the winner, include Avon editor Tessa Woodward, bestselling author Cathy Maxwell (I'm a huge fan of her books) and agent Ethan Ellenberg.
The final winners will be announced at the NJRW's October conference. I plan to be there. I went last year and it was a fantastic, inspiring experience.

The workshops and panels featured bestselling authors and top editors. I came back super-motivated. It's rare when an experience exceeds expectations, but that was definitely the case last year.

Maybe it will be so again this year!   

Traditional Publisher Strikes Deal With Self E-publishing Phenom

Monday, August 22, 2011

Simon and Schuster has closed a distribution deal with author John Locke, the first self-epublished author to sell a million copies of his books through Amazon's Kindle Store.

It's the latest sign that the publishing world is adapting to the rapidly-changing landscape brought about by ebooks. 

Under the deal, the publisher will handle sales and distribution for the print editions of the author's titles.The arrangement gets print editions of Locke's books out to traditional book sellers, making them more widely available. 

Simon and Schuster will distribute eight of Locke's Donovan Creed novels. The titles are expected to be on sale by February 2012. The publisher says more books will follow under the deal.

Locke retains the rights to edit and publish his titles.

The publisher says the arrangement is a standard distribution agreement, similar to the deals distributors regularly strike with small publishers.

The deal was negotiated by literary agent Jane Dystel. 

How Much Do Book Editors Make?

Friday, August 19, 2011

It's none of our business but we're all kind of curious about how much moola people in the publishing industry are earning.

You know from some of my previous posts that most published romance authors can't quit their day job. But for New York book editors, editing IS their day job.

According to GalleyCat, the average salary for any editor in the New York area is $53,500 a year.

At Penguin, average salaries range from $40,000 to 75,000 a year. An associate editor makes about $41,654, while a senior editor draws anywhere from $54,000 to 93,000 a year.

At Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, editors can make from $32,000 to 77,000 annually. Senior editor salaries range from $38,000 to $75,000 a year. A supervising editor's salary can range from $59,000 to 90,000.

Random House associate editors make between $42,000 and $45,000 a year. Production editors salaries range from $42,000 to $62,000 a year.

Galleycat got these figures from the anonymous job site Glassdoor, and all of the figures are taken from the website's anonymous users.

Victorian-Era Film Tackles Women's Pleasure

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Now this is something I have yet to read about in any historical romance novel.

"Hysteria," a new movie starring Maggie Gyllenhaall and Hugh Dancy, is based on the true Victorian-era story of the invention of the vibrator.

Check out this hilarious - and somewhat shocking - trailer:  

Amazon Jumps into the Tablet Business

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Apple's iPad 2
Look out Apple, Amazon plans to introduce a tablet computer this fall.

The device could challenge the iPad. It is expected to have a nine-inch screen and will run on Google's Android operating system. 

Amazon customers will be able to watch videos, read ebooks and listen to music purchased or rented from Amazon. It is not expected to have a camera.

The new tablet will intensify the competition between Amazon and Apple, both of which are fighting for customers for their own digital books, music and movies.

Amazon is also releasing two new versions of the Kindle. One will have a touch-screen, the other will not. It will be an updated, cheaper version of the current Kindle model.

You can read more about it in this article from The Wall Street Journal.

Ebooks, Young Adult Fiction Help Spark Book Resurgence

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Despite the closing of Borders, it looks like things are not quite so gloomy for the book industry after all.

Ebooks, along with juvenile and adult fiction, are driving a resurgence of the book industry. 

Instead of shrinking, the publishing industry has expanded in the last three years, according to BookStats, which is published by the Association of American Publishers and the Book Industry Study Group.

BookStats looks at net sales revenue and unit data reported by almost 2,000 U.S. publishers. It tracks sales and units by format and category.

Publishers sold 5.6 percent more books in 2010 than they did in 2008, according to the report. More than  2.5 billion books were sold in all formats in 2010. That's a 4 percent hike over 2008.

Americans of all ages are actively reading in all print and digital formats. Juvenile and adult fiction have made some big annual gains.

Fiction aimed at children, teens and young adults rose 7 percent over the three years in net sales revenue and 12 percent in net unit sales.

“The BookStats study indicates that the publishing industry is healthy and growing during a time of unprecedented change,” says Dominique Raccah, founder and CEO of Sourcebooks, who chairs the BookStats committee.

And the numbers are likely to grow. The BookStats report does not include sales from 2011, which has seen a surge in ebook sales.

Check out more details of the report here.

'Tempting Bella' is a 2011 Maggie Finalist!

Saturday, August 6, 2011

I received a pretty great call just after dinner last night.

It was Dianna Shuford, from the Georgia Romance Writers, calling to tell me that my latest work in progress, "Tempting Bella," is a finalist in the 2011 Maggie Contest for unpublished writers.

This is Bella's first contest final. About 30 pages of the manuscript - plus a synopsis - were judged by two published authors.

It's always encouraging to receive validation for my work - a little something that tells me I'm on the right track. Especially from two professionals in the field. 

"Tempting Bella" is my third completed manuscript.

It is the story of Mirabella, who is married off as a child to settle her father's gaming debt. After the hasty marriage, she does not see her husband again for almost a decade. She grows to resent the stranger she assumes married her for her fortune and promptly forgot she existed. When they do meet again, neither knows who the other is, but the attraction (of course!) is immediate. You can read more about the story by clicking here.

There are four other finalists in the Maggie contest's historical category.

Avon's Tessa Woodward is the final judge.

The winner will be announced at the Georgia Romance Writers 2011 Moonlight and Magnolias conference in which runs Sept. 29 through Oct. 2.

This is my second time as a Maggie finalist. My first manuscript, "Compromising Willa," placed second in the 2009 contest.

By the way, it's fun to note that the winner that year was Patricia Patton for "Love and the Heir." Later published as "The Heir" - under Patton's pen name Grace Burrowes - the book was named one of Publishers Weekly's Top Five Romances for 2010 and went on to become a New York Times bestseller.

So at least I can say I got beat out by a New York Times bestselling author. Not too shabby!