February 2nd, 2012

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One Chance at the Shelves

"The Importance of Shelf Space" is an article about how a bookstore monopoly hurts authors.

Bookselling was pretty much down to two megacorps, Borders and Barnes & Noble.  With the loss of Borders (and its subsidiary Waldenbooks) there is now only one.  There's Amazon online, but it doesn't make many browse sales, just people buying stuff they already want.  Few independent stores remain.  That means, basically, if Barnes & Noble decides not to carry your book, your career goes down the toilet.  Most customers buy books by browsing; if your book isn't visible, they probably won't buy it.  If B&N decides not to carry an author's book, the publisher isn't likely to buy another manuscript from that author.  That is just too much power for one company to have.
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Update from Kajones_writing

kajones_writing has posted some new stuff for February.  "January Round-up" includes news from the past month and some ideas for February activity.  Collection Spotlight is on the new World Walkers setting.  Character Spotlight is on Richard/Death from Afterlife.  You can ask questions about them or suggest what kind of stories you'd like to read.

I'm really pleased to see "February Free Fiction: Jack - An Asexual Vampire (part 1) - 1115 words" made available.  This is a story that I inspired.  In the Donor House setting, there is a subtle sexual element to vampires feeding, which got me wondering how that would affect an asexual vampire.  It turns out that Jack is not good at hunting and not comfortable with the usual vampire lifestyle.  He shows up at the Donor House hoping to find an alternative.

kajones_writing is also exploring the Addergoole setting with permission from aldersprig.  I think it's great when creative people play in each other's worlds like this.  So far, you can read "Addergoole Characters" introducing a pair of twins, "Ursula's First Night at Addergoole" which shows one of them in person, and "Guntram" which is about their father.  This cluster of writing is very strong on family ties.

The call for prompts on Imbolc/New Year is still open through February 4.  You can prompt stories from any of the 15 collections, or leave a random number if you can't think of a prompt.  You get 500 words, and stories can be extended with donations or credits.  There are also perks for boosting the signal and other stuff.
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New Crowdfunding Project: "Robot Musicians"

"Robot Musicians" is a new crowdfunding project by [personal profile] bubbleblower.  There's a bit of backstory about how the robots became musicians, and some videos of robot music.  

In crowdfunding, your project can be as weird as you want.  Cool.  Someone finally came up with something as weird as my sample ("Awesome Content" by A.J. Muse, fiction and music about ferrets) that I used to demonstrate some formatting over in the Rose & Bay Awards.