Well worth reading, certainly gets the head thinking and the blood up, it sounds very exciting:
If the United States is an ocean, its creative, media and technology industries split over the vastness of North America, London is a pond, in a non-pejorative sense. Ponds are ferociously competitive and fecund areas. New York of course has Silicon Alley, and at one remove perhaps I am totally missing the buzz of what is really happening in Brooklyn lofts, and perhaps too I am overlooking much of the undoubtedly brilliant work taking place on the Continent and elsewhere. Equally I’m not doing down the rest of the UK – Britain is a closely knit place, and London sits at the centre of a web that spans the whole country. There is a huge amount of traffic between London, Edinburgh, Oxford, Cambridge, Bristol, Manchester and other centres of books and technology, but the tight cluster of London sits at the heart of it all. Clusters, after all, are by definition geographically limited. Nor is it to be complacent; complacency isn’t an option in such an environment.
via The London cluster | FutureBook.
Interesting piece on WH Smith Travel on Publishing Perspectives today, well worth reading:
It seems that despite the cost of promotions and shelf space, publishers love WHSmith Travel. Philip Gwyn Jones, Publisher at Portobello, says. “They’re capable of making books that their rivals aren’t touching. We had a difficult, debut novel in February -– Max Schaefer’s Children of the Sun, which deals with skinhead culture -– and they took it, backed it and believed in it. They put in their chart and we had a bigger subscription from them than from Waterstone’s, although you might think this was more of a Waterstone’s book.
“I don’t think WHSmith Travel is celebrated enough. Yes, they take a narrow range, but within that you will see some surprises, in a way you wouldn’t in the supermarkets.”
via Is WHSmith Travel the UKs Best Bookseller? | Publishing Perspectives.
You have to wonder how long this can go on for and who is going to lose. The sense I get is it sure won’t be Amazon, but it VERY WELL may be the Publishers!
However, another senior publisher attacked the pricing strategies of W H Smith and Amazon. He said: “It’s absolutely absurd to devalue our product but I’m not surprised because our industry is populated by nincompoops.”
He said Amazon’s move could make the agency model less attractive to publishers. He said: “In this instance, on the wholesale model, publishers are fine because it is retailers taking the pain. If we say a book is £10 and you get 40% discount, we get £6. If the retailer chooses to sell it for £2, we’re still all right.”
A review of e-book prices undertaken by The Bookseller shows that Amazon and WHS are offering the lowest prices. Kindle and WHS e-books are also significantly cheaper than their counterparts on Apple’s iBookstore, where prices are set by the publisher.
via E-book price war “absurd” | theBookseller.com.