Blackwells Agree Deal for Espresso Machine Rollout
On any scale this is both interesting and a big deal. From the piece:
The deal makes Blackwell the first UK retailer to install the EBM. The academic chain will trial the machine from this autumn at a yet-to-be-determined launch site, and will then roll it out across its stores. It is also looking at possible international retail sites and library supply for the machine.
Blackwell c.e.o. Vince Gunn described the technology, the brainchild of former Random House US editorial director Jason Epstein, as “trailblazing and pioneering”. He added: “From a retailer’s point of view, even allowing for the first–generation technology and publisher challenges, this is a fantastic opportunity—sell to demand with no risk to inventory and an opportunity to create incremental revenue streams for ourselves and publishers.”
For their sakes I hope they roll it out fast and with fanfare before other steal their thunder. When you consider the customer breakdown and the likely purchases that Blackwell encompasses, you see that they are almost ideally suited as a launch customer for the Espresso in the UK!
My throat feeling slightly better and I’m rested. Lots of work next week,
Spotted on The Quillblog
This gem from Tony Farmar:
Our problem now is to move [Irish publishers’ market share] from 15% to 50%
In some senses he is right and in others he is wrong. It would be wonderful for Irish publishers to control 50% of the Irish book market. That much is uncontested.
But I think Tony’s words may have been taken a little out of context (NOTE: I don’t know though, as I wasn’t there) because the 85% of the market that is described as being held by British publishers, is held by international publishers and our chances of shifting that share are limited.
Still, I do think we can go toe to toe on a project by project basis. We need to choose the right books, the right authors and the right time for sure, but there is no reason why even small Irish publishers cannot deliver superior products and promotion for lead titles.
Let’s see what Autumn brings
I saw this today
It’s a site for a new book called Here Ends The Beginning, using a new platform called Quillr.
ReadWriteWeb has some discussion. I’m not very impressed I have to admit. I don’t see this working, but give it a look for yourself.
On the other hand
I do like both of these efforts for the very interesting Exact Editions:
Sawdays have launched digital access to their books via Exact Editions Book Publishers Platform. I rather like the way it looks and access for a year is very reasonably priced too.
And Exact Editions also launched access to Debrett’s Peerage & Baronetage as well. Again, the pricing is reasonable.
As a general point, the reasonableness of these online access prices makes a mockery of some of the e-book download prices I’ve seen.
Worth checking out all three, but if someone can see the first working, write and let me know how!
JK Rowling gave an amazing commencement address in Harvard. It is something special and worth watching.
She has a capacity to couch tough words in velvet language and calm presentation that I am slightly in awe of. For instance:
I might be tempted to envy people who can live that way, except that I do not think they have any fewer nightmares than I do. Choosing to live in narrow spaces can lead to a form of mental agoraphobia, and that brings its own terrors. I think the wilfully unimaginative see more monsters. They are often more afraid.
What is more, those who choose not to empathise may enable real monsters. For without ever committing an act of outright evil ourselves, we collude with it, through our own apathy.
But how much more are you, Harvard graduates of 2008, likely to touch other people’s lives? Your intelligence, your capacity for hard work, the education you have earned and received, give you unique status, and unique responsibilities. Even your nationality sets you apart. The great majority of you belong to the world’s only remaining superpower. The way you vote, the way you live, the way you protest, the pressure you bring to bear on your government, has an impact way beyond your borders. That is your privilege, and your burden.
If you choose to use your status and influence to raise your voice on behalf of those who have no voice; if you choose to identify not only with the powerful, but with the powerless; if you retain the ability to imagine yourself into the lives of those who do not have your advantages, then it will not only be your proud families who celebrate your existence, but thousands and millions of people whose reality you have helped transform for the better.
She really put it up to them! Go on JK
[via the snowblog]
I was asked
To write a few words on poetry for the blog so I did. The very nice and very cool David Maybury seems to think it is okay and stuck it up for me. If you have time, go read it.
Me on poetry, seems odd I think you’ll agree!