Sunday, December 08, 2013
Bits, Pieces, and Turns of the Screw
By OFW Editor:
Carlos J Cortes
Published: September 11, 2012
Another turn of the screw in the “reviews for sale” fiasco. Andrew Shaffer, Author of "Fifty Shames of Earl Grey" (got to love this guy) wrote about the John Locke scandal in the
In June 2011, John Locke became the first self-published author to be inducted into the Kindle "million sales" club for selling one million ebooks. Simon and Schuster even signed him to a print publishing deal. Now Locke's accomplishments, like those of doping athletes, are tainted. While he didn't buy all one million of those sales, can anyone deny that the reviews and sales he did buy paved the way for his "success"?
In addition to buying reviews, Locke also paid the reviewers to download his .99 ebooks so that the reviews showed up on Amazon as "verified purchases." Buying reviews of ebooks that include downloads is a well-known way to "juice" an ebook's sales rank and attract new readers.
I was going to add a comment here but nothing I write will make a difference. No comment.
Phyllis Korkki, on the September 8 edition of the
New York Times
has written an insightful article titled
In Defense of the Power of Paper.
In her article, Korkki replays executive Steve Leveen’s comments:
Paper reminds us that “we’re physical beings, despite having to contend with an increasingly virtual world,” he said. People complain that writing by hand is slow, but that can be good for thinking and creating, he said: “It slows us down to think and to contemplate and to revise and recast.”
There are some brave souls fighting to keep paper and ink (or pencil) alive.
One last item. Michael Ruffles’s 50 shades of Dorian Gray, an article in the Arts and Culture section of the
The Uncensored Picture Of Dorian Gray is the latest edition of Wilde's only novel, but it is also the first. Editor Nicholas Frankel has followed the manuscript Wilde submitted to Lippincott's magazine in early 1890. Frankel poured over the original typescript and about 3,000 handwritten words Wilde added to it, restoring subtle but important romance between the three lead characters. Published last year as an annotated hardback, it is now more easily and cheaply accessible as a paperback and digital download. The effect is not radical _ this is still Dorian Gray not Fifty Shades Of Grey _ but it is noticeable, and the book is more satisfying for his efforts.
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