Friday, March 12, 2010

Books! Books! Books! Ahhhmazonnnnn. Again? The Twitter-blogo-wrangle

Yep, another delay in blog posts, but with reason: Busy, busy making books, designing books, and coordinating the Press.

As the client list grows for Third Place Press, I'm having to farm out some services so that we can get our client's projects up and printing quickly. These past 2 weeks I've finalized the family Fictional memoir, "Ruby", by Wilma Wilson. Currently this is more of an intimate printing--family & acquaintances-- but it's a very large extended family, and the occasion for the book is that the author is turning 94! Her daughter corralled the whole project into shape and now her family is calling her up to order copies.

And just in time for The Emerald City Comicon, we unveil our super-secret book project:

We're pretty happy with the outcome-- Roberta Gregory's collection of her comic book narratives previously published in the "Naughty Bits" comic book series published by Fantagraphics Books, as well as some original pieces. The potential of the EBM is not limited to literature, the rise of the independent comic book artist on the web and the real world represents a fundamental shift in the way we used to tell our stories; I'm not saying grandiose or apocalyptic stuff like "Literature is Dead!" or "It's the End of the Novel!" I'm a firm believer in the healthy co-existence of all these forms of storytelling, and I'm hoping to get more comic book artists to see the potential of the machine in regards to their work-- the ease of production, low print runs, low costs. I know there are many artists out there right now who believe that publishing their work is either a pipe-dream or very far into the future.
I say the time is NOW.

It appears that Ben Greeman writing at, via Galleycat, proposed a new savior for the Publishing Industry... No, it's now e-books, nor p-books (as all the techies are calling real books), nor is it the multi-media-predicted-by-Neal-Stephenson-in-The-Diamond-Age madness that's coming from publishers very soon. It's-- 3-D Type! Wooooooo! Apparently the twitter-sphere and blogo-verse went Code Red for a day or two before it was revealed that 3*TYPE was satire. I for one was relieved. I really think it would be crazy to set a Chuck Palahniuk book in 3-D type, to cite just one example...

And Amazon once again, acting like a dance partner with two left feet (one from a donkey, one from a gorilla), ended up stepping on the toes of Comic book fans and the publishers. The fiasco essentially involved another computer glitch (disgruntled employee, anyone?) that set the prices of high-end graphic novels to $14.99 across the board. Well, obviously the fans mobilized and ordered multiple items, often clocking in at over $100 dollars per person. Amazon back-pedaled, canceled most orders, then in what seemed like over-kill took the buy buttons away for several days. Which made creators & publishers mad, and created a chorus of "Now's the time to go to a brick and mortar comic store."...This all sounds familiar. And in two weeks people will be back to sheeping their way back to Amazon, and comic book stores will be back to struggling to compete. Sigh.

I love the New Scientist for its witty way of tweeting articles, here are some examples of the the treasures that clicking on their links will get you...

Two bits of delightful internet absurdity, first via Nick Harkaway, writer at large, and then by Paul Constant, Books Editor of The Stranger in Seattle.

Have a great weekend!

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