Kindle, A New Way To Read

Saturday, May 31, 2008

Mary Higgins Clark

Hello there, it’s early in the morning and I am taking a small break from writing my query. There is a writer who I think about whenever I run into a rough spot in my writing; that successful novelist is named Mary Higgins Clark. She was a widow with 5 children and would get up at 5 am and write until 7 am because she had to get the kids up. She never allowed the fact that she became a widow and had to rear 5 children stop her from her dream of being a novelist. I figure if she can do it with her situation, I certainly can too. Here is some information from an interview.
Question: What is our ideal writing situation? Time, place, atmosphere, etc…?

Mary Higgins Clark: The 3rd floor of my house has a tower-like room that has sky lights in it, bookcases. It is painted a wonderful shade Cardinal Red. There is lots of oak, and my desk. There is a love seat in an oriental pattern in red; a state of the art computer. My idea is to come up here after an early light breakfast and get right to work. For me, the best thing to do is to work from 8 ‘til 2 and have a sandwich at the desk. And to stick as much as possible to that schedule. By the time I am getting to the end of a book, I work about 17 hours a day.

Question: What is your advice to the aspiring writer?

Mary Higgins Clark: “The first thing you have to do is write. So many people tell me, ‘I’m going to write a books as soon as…’ the three fatal words are as soon as…As soon as I learn to use the computer. As soon as I quit my job. As soon as the kids grow up. As soon as the dog dies. But trust me, as soon as the kids grow up and the dog dies, there will a new set of excuses not to write which will be equally valid.”

More Interesting Tidbits on Mary Higgins Clark:

Mary was left a young widow with five children by the death of her husband, Warren Clark, from a hart attack in 1964. She went to work writing radio scripts and, in addition, decided to write books.

Every morning, she got up at 5 am and wrote until 7 am, when she had to get the kids ready for school. Her fist book was biographical novel about the life of George Washington, Aspire to the Heaves. “It was remaindered as it came off the press,” she says of her first try. Next, she decided to write a suspense novel, Where are the Children?, which became a bestseller and marked a turning point in her life and career.
06/01/08 4:40am

50 Cent Publisher w/ His Writers, Nikki Turner & K. Elliott

Nikki Turner, musician, actor, and author Curtis "50 Cent" Jackson, and K. Elliott launch G-Unit Books at Borders on January 4, 2007 in New York City.

06/01/08 4:15am

Friday, May 30, 2008

Make Your Life The Best It Can Be

Each new day is a blank page in the diary of your life. The pen is in your hand, but the lines will not all be written the way you choose; some will come from the world and the circumstances that surround you. But for the many things that are in your control, remember this…

The secret of life is in making your story as beautiful as it can be. Write the dairy of your days and fill the pages with words that come from the heart. As the pages take you through time, yo will discover paths that will add to your happiness and your sorrows, but if you can do these things, there will always be hope in your tomorrows.

Follow your dreams. Work hard. Be kind. This is all anyone could ever ask: do you what you can to make the door open on a day that is filled with beauty in some special way. Remember: goodness will be rewarded. Smiles will pay you back. Have fun. Find strength. Be truthful. Have faith. Don’t focus on things you lack. Realize that people are the treasures in life and happiness is the real wealth. Have a diary that describes how you are doing your best, and…..

The rest will take care of itself.

5/31/08 4:20am

---- Douglas Pagels

Disney Signs Jonas Brothers

-- Publishers Weekly, 5/29/2008 8:01:00 AM

Disney Book Group has acquired world rights to a behind-the-scenes book from The Jonaes Brothers band, due out this fall from Disney-Hyperion. “We hope our fans get to relive our shows and discover things they haven’t seen before through our book,” said Jonas brothers Kevin, Joe and Nick in a statement. The book deal was negotiated by Jonathan Yaged, v-p and North America publisher of the Disney Book Group. The platinum-selling band stars in next month’s Camp Rock on the Disney Channel; their third album will be released in August

05/31/08 4:08am

Penguin Sees Major e-Book Sales Spike

-- Publishers Weekly, 5/28/2008 9:25:00 AM

Penguin has reported that e-book sales from the first four months of 2008 have surpassed the house's total e-book sales for all of last year. According to the publisher, the spike is "more than five times the overall growth in sales, year-on-year, through April 2008." Penguin Group CEO David Shanks said he attributed the jump, in large part, to the growing popularity of e-book readers.

That said, the publisher has been doing its part to add premium features to its electronic content. To that end, the house is developing properties like the Penguin Enhanced e-Book Classics; the first title in that series, Pride and Prejudice, will debut this summer and include such bells and whistles as reviews (of the original publication), a filmography, recipes and notes on etiquette. Nine more titles will be released as Enhanced e-Book Classics throughout the fall.
5/31/08 4:05a

On-Demand Titles Drive Jump in Book Output

by Jim Milliot -- Publishers Weekly, 5/28/2008 9:57:00 AM

The production of traditional books rose 1% in 2007, to 276,649 new titles and editions, but the output of on-demand, short run and unclassified titles soared from 21,936 in 2006 to 134,773 last year, according to preliminary figures released Wednesday by R.R. Bowker. The combination of the two categories results in a 39% increase in output to 411,422. Although it has tracked production of on-demand titles in the past, this is the first year the company has broken out the segment to better show the differences in the traditional categories (such as biography, fiction, juvenile) and the on-demand segment.

The new segment includes traditional books printed by mainstream publishers using print-on-demand technology, public domain titles published through p-o-d as well as titles from self publishers and very small independent press that use p-o-d. Kelly Gallagher, general manager of business intelligence for Bowker, said that all three areas played a role in the unprecedented jump in output. It’s not possible to determine at this point whether the spike in on-demand titles is an aberration or the beginning of a long-term trend.

Among the traditional categories, the biggest gain in output occurred in literature, which rose 19%, to 9,796 titles, while fiction was close behind at a 17% increase to 50,071 titles; fiction is also the single largest category. Seventeen categories had a drop in output, with the largest decline in business with title output down 12%, to 7,651. Output in personal/financial titles fell 8%, while publication of religious text dropped 5%. Juvenile title output fell 1%, to 30,063.

Between 2002 and 2007, production of traditional titles rose 29% compared to a 313% increase in the on-demand segment resulting in an overall increase of 66% in the five-year period.
05/31/08 4am

Too Many Writers, Not Enough Readers?

Here's an interesting article from the blogger from Writer's Write:

Are there too many writers and not enough readers? Rachel Donadio crunches the numbers.

"It's well established that Americans are reading fewer books than they used to. A recent report by the National Endowment for the Arts found that 53 percent of Americans surveyed hadn't read a book in the previous year -- a state of affairs that has prompted much soul-searching by anyone with an affection for (or business interest in) turning pages. But even as more people choose the phantasmagoria of the screen over the contemplative pleasures of the page, there's a parallel phenomenon sweeping the country: collective graphomania.

In 2007, a whopping 400,000 books were published or distributed in the United States, up from 300,000 in 2006, according to the industry tracker Bowker, which attributed the sharp rise to the number of print-on-demand books and reprints of out-of-print titles. University writing programs are thriving, while writers' conferences abound, offering aspiring authors a chance to network and "workshop" their work. The blog tracker Technorati estimates that 175,000 new blogs are created worldwide each day (with a lucky few bloggers getting book deals). And the same N.E.A. study found that 7 percent of adults polled, or 15 million people, did creative writing, mostly "for personal fulfillment."

In short, everyone has a story -- and everyone wants to tell it. Fewer people may be reading, but everywhere you turn, Americans are sounding their barbaric yawps over the roofs of the world, as good old Walt Whitman, himself a self-published author, once put it. "As publishing has become less expensive, the urge to write my own self has become the opportunity to publish my own self," said Gabriel Zaid, a Mexican critic and the author of So Many Books: Reading and Publishing in an Age of Abundance, a meditation on literary life in an over-booked world. Today, he added, "Everyone now can afford to preach in the desert."

We don't think there are too many writers, not by a long shot. It's a difficult thing just to finish a novel, let alone get it published. It is true that not all writers are of equal quality, but it's always been that way. And we're just not buying the Steve Jobs premise that people aren't reading as much or don't like to read as much.

Harry Potter proved that millions of children will read books when they have something to read that they really love. Many forget the conventional wisdom of the day (before J.K. Rowling appeared on the scene): that children's books could never generate the kind of sales that adult titles could. That turned out to be a myth. The same is true of the doom and gloom crowd today that claim that reading is on the way out.

05/31/08 3:34am

Just a Minute With: Writer, Filmmaker Eleanor Coppola

By Iain BlairThu May 29, 2:26 PM ET

Eleanor Coppola is an accomplished documentary filmmaker, artist, writer and the wife of an icon of American cinema, Francis Ford Coppola.

They met on the film "Dementia 13" in 1962 when she was the assistant art director and he was directing his first feature film.

Coppola has accompanied her husband on movie shoots around the world, giving her an insider's view of the ups and downs of filmmaking.
In the Philippines for "Apocalypse Now," she shot documentary footage for the Emmy Award-winning "Hearts of Darkness: A Filmmaker's Apocalypse" and kept a journal, released in 1979 as "Notes on the Making of 'Apocalypse Now."'

Her new book "Notes on a Life," is an intimate portrait of a family that includes her daughter, writer/director Sofia Coppola ("Lost in Translation").

The 72-year-old Coppola talked to Reuters about the book, being married to a famous director and the competing demands of career and family.

Q: What was the impetus for doing this book?

A: "My mother wrote her thoughts on index cards for years. She filled shoeboxes with thousands of cards. I encouraged her to edit them. She always said she wasn't ready. Then the time came when she was no longer able -- she's 99. I realized my nearly 30 years of notebooks were piling up."

Q: Was it easy or hard going through old journals and deciding what to include, what to exclude?
A: "I started by selecting the most complete pieces I'd written. I laughed, wept and was bored. Memories triggered searching for particular entries and then I'd find old pieces I'd forgotten, such as the trip in Japan to visit Akira Kurosawa. It was revelatory to see repeated patterns weaving through my life."

Q: Can you talk about the problems of being married to a hugely successful, famous man, when you're a very accomplished artist in your own right?

A: "It's a challenge to find time for my own work with so many responsibilities and seductive opportunities in my life with Francis, our children, the winery and resorts. Of course there are pluses too, some doors open."

Q: You often write about the frustration of following Francis around on a location where he's so excited and focused, while you have to deal with mundane issues. Do you feel that you sacrificed your own creative life to some extent?

A: "I may have gotten more of my art work done in other life circumstances, but going to far flung locations with Francis and our family enormously expanded my horizons. It gave me the opportunity to see life and art in other parts of the world and develop my critical thinking."

Q: There are times, such as on the set of "Godfather III" in Rome, when Francis is depressed and angry and takes it out on you. Did he ever read your journal or the rough draft of this book and ask you to make any changes?

A: "Francis read the finished manuscript in finished form and didn't ask for any changes."

Q: Is it possible for a woman to have it all -- a happy marriage, kids and a fulfilling career? Or does something have to give?

A: "Well, I see the current generation of young women doing a much better job than the women my age did. My daughter and her friends seem to take for granted that this is their right. Still, it's not easy and requires a lot of skill editing and balancing the many demands."

Q: What are your main feelings when you look back on the years covered in this book? (from the mid-1980s to 2005)

A: "I feel I've had a front row seat for very extraordinary experiences. They have included the full spectrum of human emotion, the big ones: birth, death, love, success, failure, the whole deal."

05/31/08 3:25am

McClellan's Book On Bush A Surprise Hit For Many

By Hillel Italie , AP National WriterFri May 30, 6:20 AM ET

The allegations of deceit in Scott McClellan's book have been a surprise not only for Bush officials enraged with the former White House spokesman but also for publishers who turned down what is now the industry's hottest release.

"Books by spokespeople rarely contain anything newsworthy and have generally not proven particularly compelling to consumers," said Steve Ross, publisher of the Collins division of HarperCollins and head of the Crown Publishing Group at Random House Inc. at the time McClellan was offering his manuscript. "It was shopped around but, like others who publish in the category, we didn't even take a meeting based upon past history."

McClellan, a press secretary known for loyally defending President Bush on Iraq, Katrina and other issues, has written that his ex-boss misled the country about Iraq and calls the White House atmosphere "insular, secretive and combative."

"What Happened: Inside the Bush White House and Washington's Culture of Deception" was No. 1 on and the publisher, Public Affairs, said that the printing has been doubled from 65,000 to 130,000.

McClellan's accusations have been met by counteraccusations that he is cashing in on his White House access. Bush supporters have criticized him, but so have liberals such as commentator Arianna Huffington.

"It's George Tenet deja vu all over again," Huffington wrote in a posting on her blog,, referring to the former CIA director who received seven figures for his memoir. "How many times are we going to have a key Bush administration official try to wash the blood off his hands — and add a chunk of change to his bank account — by writing a come-clean book years after the fact ..."

But McClellan's book does not fit the pattern of Washington megadeals. He was not represented by Washington, D.C., attorney Bob Barnett, whose clients include Tenet and countless political leaders, but by the much less known Craig Wiley, whose most famous client is actor Ron Silver.

McClellan's advance did not approach the level of Barnett's writers. According to an official with knowledge of McClellan's contract — who spoke on condition of anonymity citing the confidentiality of the pact — McClellan received only $75,000 from PublicAffairs, which specializes in policy books by billionaire George Soros, Nobel Prize-winning economist Muhammad Yunus and others.

Rival publishers say they had no sense that McClellan would make such explosive observations, a belief scorned by PublicAffairs founder Peter Osnos.

"Of course they didn't know what would be in it, because they didn't acquire the book," said Osnos, currently in Los Angeles for BookExpo America, publishing's annual national gathering. "Very rarely does a book turn out the way it's expected."

Osnos said he didn't even read the proposal, but instead sought out people who knew McClellan and said they regarded him as an honest man unhappy in his job. According to Osnos, and the book's editor, Lisa Kaufman, "What Happened" evolved as McClellan wrote it.

"The original proposal was somewhat general, so before making an offer on the book we talked to Scott at some length," Kaufman said.

"As Scott says in the preface, writing the book was a process for him. ... The tone was always thoughtful, straightforward, and candid. It's just that as he thought about his experience over many months, that tone began to be directed toward issues and events that some people would rather he not be straightforward and candid about."

5/30/08 3:09am

Monday, May 26, 2008

Quote of the Day for the Writer

“I would rather be a failure at something I loved doing than a success at something I hate to do.”

- George Burns

5/27/08 6:42am

Saturday, May 24, 2008

50 Cent Book Signing

50 Cent in His Own Words at Barnes & Noble in Astor Place on October 23, 2007 in New York City
05/24/08 9:06pm

Friday, May 23, 2008

Goosebumps Picked Up By Columbia Pictures

By Rachel Deahl -- Publishers Weekly, 5/15/2008 1:27:00 PM
R.L. Stine's longrunning children's book series, Goosebumps, has been acquired by Columbia Pictures. After Scholastic Entertainment adapted the series for television in the mid '90s--it aired on the Fox Kids Network--the series will now head to movie theaters. The forthcoming feature will be produced by Scholastic Media president Deborah Forte and Neal H. Moritz (I Am Legend). To date, Goosebumps has sold over 300 million copies worldwide and has been translated in more than 32 languages. A new Goosebumps series, Goosebumps HorrorLand, released its first titles earlier this spring.

Speaking to the movie, which is headed into development now, Moritz, an active Hollywood producer, said that acquiring the rights to the series "comes with an enormous responsibility to the fans who have grown up with these books and have very high expectations about how these beloved novels will be adapted."
5/24/08 10:32am

Restructuring at Simon & Schuster Digital

-- Publishers Weekly, 5/15/2008 2:01:00 PM

Ellie Hirschhorn, who took over as chief digital officer at Simon & Schuster in February, has announced a restructuring of S&S Digital with some new hires and promotions, while also announcing that Kate Tentler, senior v-p of the group, will be leaving at the end of June.

Adrian Norman has been named v-p of marketing and new products. Norman, who arrives from the Disney-ABC Television Group where he was executive director of digital media, will supervise the in-house group. Steve Morgan has come on board as v-p of engineering. Morgan was chief technology officer at Oxygen Media. Sue Fleming has been promoted to v-p, executive director of content and programming. Radhika Nayak has been promoted to v-p, director of product management. And Doug Stambaugh, who was hired in September from AOL, will remain executive director, business development and operations. Stambaugh will have responsibility for Simon & Schuster’s e-book publishing efforts, identifying new revenue streams, and developing partnerships with third party distribution, content and technology partners.

Hirschhorn said the new structure "will better position us to expand Simon & Schuster’s presence in the digital realm" and that the building of the house's digital warehouse "continues apace" with the announcement of "major digital initiatives” forthcoming. Hirschhorn added that Tentler "has been at the forefront of all our endeavors in this arena,” and thanked her for "everything she has done."

5/24/08 10:18am

'Flirting' With Lifetime

On the Hawaii set of the LifetimeTV movie of Jane Porter's novel, Flirting with Forty (Grand Central), the author (center) stopped for a picture with stars Heather Locklear and Robert Buckley (Lipstick Jungle). Porter had a cameo in the show, which finished shooting last week.
From Publisher's Weekly
5/24/08 10:17am

Microsoft Pulls Plug on Live Search Books

In an early morning post, Microsoft announced that it is ending Live Search Books and Live Search Academic projects and taking down both sites. Through the programs, Microsoft has digitized 750,000 books and indexed 80 million journal articles. Those results will now be integrated into general search results. Effective immediately, Microsoft has stopped digitizing new materials in both its library scanning and in-copyright book programs.

According to Microsoft, “based on our experience, we foresee that the best way for a search engine to make book content available will be by crawling content repositories created by book publishers and libraries.”

Microsoft will be providing publishers with digital copies of their scanned books, and is working with Ingram Digital, which was doing much of the scanning, to provide publishers with sales and marketing opportunities for titles already in Live Search Books.

by Jim Milliott for Publisher's Weekly
5/24/08 10:08

Lifetime Television Adapts Patricia Cornwell's Novels for TV

In a ground-breaking agreement, Lifetime Television will become the first network ever to adapt acclaimed international author Patricia Cornwell's novels for television. Her #1 New York Times bestseller, At Risk, and its sequel, The Front, to be published by G.P. Putnam's Sons in May, have been optioned by the Network.

Stanley M. Brooks and Jim Head of Once Upon a Time Films (LMN's "The Capture of the Green River Killer" -- Lifetime Movie Network's highest-rated movie in its 10-year history; Emmy(R) Award-winning "Broken Trail"), Russell Werdin and Lane Bishop of Twinstar Entertainment and Patricia Cornwell will serve as executive producers.

Other bestsellers that have been adapted to Lifetime Original Movies include Joyce Carol Oates' "We Were the Mulvaneys," Sue Monk Kidd's "The Mermaid Chair," and a quartet of Nora Roberts' novels. Recent movies include Kim Edwards' "The Memory Keeper's Daughter," starring Dermot Mulroney, Emily Watson and Gretchen Mol and Jodi Picoult's "The Tenth Circle" starring Kelly Preston and Ron Eldard, premiering Saturday, June 28 (9PM ET/PT) on Lifetime.

ICM negotiated the deal on behalf of Cornwell.


5/24/08 9:58am

Thursday, May 22, 2008

50 Cent Book Signing In NYC

Here's an old pic of 50 Cent signing his book. It looks like he's signing From Pieces To Weight and not 50X50. I almost got 50X50, but never did. oh well. 05/23/08 12:25pm

50 Cent was at the Barnes & Noble earlier today, near Astor Place signing copies of his new book '50 x 50: 50 Cent In His Own Words'. The illustrated autobiography outlines Curtis' climb from Southside Jamaica, Queens to his Connecticut Mansion.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

I'm here!

Good Afternoon! I am off today!

Sorry for the gap, like Bob Williamson, I have a lot going at one time – A LOT! Stuff I choose not to mention, not even the progress. People only know a few things I do. You would be surprised at what all I have so if you stick around long enuff you will know. So if you don't see a posting for awhile, you know, Cattt is knee deep in something. Plus a water pipe busted at my house. Hooray for me! I have water damage galore! It’s all in how you deal with it. If I stay mad, nothing changes, I still have water damage. See?

When I read Bob’s story I thought about how a person can just do one thing? I just couldn’t afford to do that especially if you know you have talent and if you don’t know you better figure out what kind of talent God has given you. We all have one, but we just don’t take the time out to figure out what it is. Even with all his problems he was able to work thru them and continue onward. A lot of times I deal with people who tend to wallow in their plight and remain angry at the situation even for days, months, and years and we don’t want to be like these people. I suggest you avoid them entirely if you can. Life is what you make it, so decide the life you want to live and CREATE it. --- Cattt 5/22/08 3:00pm

Blogger is acting crazy that's why I'm dating my posties! Bob Williamson's story is on Mogul Mama. Just click on My Profile, scroll down, and you should find the link.

Tommy Lee Jones taking on Ernest Hemingway project

This sounds like such a great movie. Tommy Lee Jones and Morgan Freeman are such fantastic actors that I hope they can pull off Hemingway's novel! There are many times when great works of writing just needs to be read and not made into a movie or television show.

By Steven ZeitchikThu May 15, 2:59 AM ET

Tommy Lee Jones is taking on the work of Ernest Hemingway, signing on to adapt, direct, produce and star in the writer's posthumously published novel "Islands in the Stream."
Morgan Freeman and John Goodman also are in discussions to board the film, which follows a 1977 version starring George C. Scott.

"Islands" centers on the various life stages of a reclusive male painter named Thomas Hudson before, during and after World War II, after he moves to the Bahamas. Like many Hemingway characters, Hudson, who in the tale has a stint working for the U.S. Navy and also endures a series of family tragedies, leads a complicated emotional life that he hides behind a stony exterior.

The book was published in 1970, nine years after Hemingway killed himself. He actually broke off a piece of the novel and turned it into a novella that became 1952's "The Old Man and the Sea." Jones co-wrote the script with Bill Witliff ("The Perfect Storm"). The project will be presented to buyers at Cannes on Sunday. "The Old Man and the Sea" won the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction in 1953 and the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1954.

The Hemingway adaptation marks Jones' sophomore directorial effort, after the Mexican mystery "The Three Burials of Melquiades Estrada."

"Islands," which is set for an estimated $30 million budget, will shoot in Puerto Rico, with production not scheduled to start until March.

Reuters/Hollywood Reporter

5/22/08 3:34pm


Here's something that you might be interested in. I got it from Writer's Market Newsletter:

The 2009 edition of Songwriter's Market is accepting pitch submissions for articles geared toward the music industry. Articles will help aspiring songwriters achieve their goals of getting their songs heard by artists, agents and publishers in the music field. Especially wanted are 'Insider Information' articles that take the reader into the process of submitting demos to music companies, with comments from decision-makers. Articles should be 1,500-2,500 words. Pays on acceptance. Pitches only to Greg Hatfield, editor, at

Good Luck! -- Cattt 5/22/08 3:14

Scribner Signs Tila Tequila

By Lynn Andriani -- Publishers Weekly, 5/12/2008

Rapper/singer/model/blogger/actress/MySpace celebrity/MTV sensation Tila Tequila has signed a book deal with Scribner. The house has acquired world rights to publish Tequila’s (real name: Tila Nguyen) first book, Hooking Up with Tila Tequila and plans a December 2008 release. “The world cannot get enough of Tila Tequila,” said Susan Moldow, Scribner executive v-p and president.

A release from Scribner says “Hooking Up with Tila Tequila is the book her fans have been waiting for” and that the tome will offer “Tila’s no-holds-barred thoughts on love, fame, happiness, and success and the remarkable story of how the child of Vietnamese immigrants singlehandedly harnessed the web to become the 21st century’s hottest sex symbol.” Unsurprisingly, the book will include color photographs.

Although Time crowned Tequila—who boasts 3.1 million MySpace friends—“the Madonna of MySpace” in 2006, it’s anyone’s guess if she’ll still be popular in seven months, when her book pubs. Still, unlike many bloggers who’ve also snagged book deals, Tequila has already parlayed her celebrity into other mediums, with an MTV reality series, A Shot at Love with Tila Tequila, which debuted in October 2007.

Senior editor Brant Rumble negotiated the agreement with David Vigliano and Michael Harriot of Vigliano Associates.
Visit Tila's Myspace -- >
5/22/08 3:08pm