See Jane Run…From Zombies…Again

In What's the Buzz by Erin L. Cox

By Erin L. Cox Yesterday, BoingBoing posted a contest to win a HP Envy 15 laptop.  The prize would go to the best literary mash-up.  Not the best story, the best mash-up.  What, pray-tell, is this world coming to? Today, in Publishers Marketplace, yet another Jane Austen mash-up has been sold (Northanger Abbey and Angels and Dragons).  Are writers so …

French Literary Agents Stage a Quiet Revolution

In Growth Markets by Olivia Snaije

By Olivia Snaije PARIS:  Until very recently, literary agents have been viewed in France with suspicion and the very topic seen as taboo. Traditionally, authors would submit and sell books directly to publishers. Agents were viewed as mere interlopers, interfering with a privileged relationship between author and publisher and introducing a mercenary, Anglo-Saxon element into the closed publishing circuit. But …

What Have You Done to Get an Early Look at a Book?

In Discussion by Edward Nawotka

By Edward Nawotka Literary scouts, as discussed in today’s feature article by Emily Williams, like much of those in the publishing industry, work in mysterious ways. For them, as well as for agents, editors, and almost anyone else in the publishing chain, getting the earliest possible read on a book—whether as a proposal or manuscript—is a key part of becoming …

Inside the Secret World of Literary Scouts

In English Language, Resources by Emily Williams

By Emily Williams Part I: How It Works NEW YORK: For five years I was an international literary scout. That means for five years I groaned inside whenever anyone asked me what I did. Scouting occupies a strange niche in book publishing, itself a rather inscrutable business from the outside, and after a time most scouts resign themselves to working—very hard—at an …

After Six Years, Germany’s KiWi Cashes In on Infinite Jest

In Europe by Amanda DeMarco

By Amanda DeMarco COLOGNE: It was “not self-evident” that David Foster Wallace’s Infinite Jest would enter the German literary world, says Helge Malchow, publisher at Cologne-based Kiepenheuer & Witsch (KiWi). Buchmarkt named Malchow Publisher of the Year in 2005, the same year a Welt Online article called him “the Bismarck of German publishing, its lord and savior.” About 50% of …

Turkmenistan’s Tragicomic Publishing Revolution

In Feature Articles, Guest Contributors & Editorial by Daniel Kalder

By Daniel Kalder When the Turkmen Soviet Socialist Republic was invented in 1925, the literacy rate among its mostly nomadic population was somewhere between 2-3%. By 1970 not only had universal literacy been achieved, but the country had acquired its own national literature and mini-canon of “great authors,” many of them writing in forms—novels, plays, film scripts—that had been alien …

Publishing for Les Petits Parisiens

In Children's, Growth Markets by Olivia Snaije

By Olivia Snaije The French children’s book fair—the Salon du Livre et de la Presse—celebrated its 25th anniversary this year, with Italy as the guest of honor.  Held in the Paris suburb of Montreuil, it’s the biggest fair of its kind in Europe that caters to the general public; and is immensely popular with parents and children, as well as …

German Book Office Fiction Rights List – Spring 2009

In German Buch News by Hannah Johnson

Twice a year, the German Book Office New York (GBO) presents its Rights Lists of adult fiction titles to North American publishers, providing editors the opportunity to read about new German-language titles that are appropriate for the American market. In addition, the GBO’s Web site features identical titles with expanded contact information and links to German publisher’s websites. Translation Funding …

Global Trade Talk: 753 Million French Euros for Digitization; Sem-Sanberg Wins August Prize; Thalia Takes Control of Buch.de

In Global Trade Talk by Edward Nawotka

By Edward Nawotka and Siobhan O’Leary Some French may not appreciate the Google Book Settlement, but at least they’re proving that they are not afraid of digitization. To wit, France’s Minister of Culture, Frederic Mitterrand, has requested 753 million euros to support the digitization of French cultural content, reports Reuters. It is estimated that the amount would cover the total …

German Buch News: Fewer Bookstores in 2009; Bing Meets with Europeans, Too; New Moon Mania

In German Buch News by Siobhan O'Leary

By Siobhan O’Leary Just as the total number of bookstores in Germany was approaching the 1,000 mark, there has been a decrease of 3% in the number of stores in the past year, to 945 stores, according to Buchreport’s 9th annual “Filialatlas” study. The drop is partly the result of several chains closing outlets, including Weltbild and Wohlthat, and the …