Category Archives: Book History

John Donne Manuscript for Sale

A seventeenth-century manuscript that includes poetry by John Donne (written during his lifetime but not in his own hand) has been discovered at Melford Hall in Suffolk recently and is expected to realise an auction price of three hundred thousand pounds.

See the auction catalogue details including images of the pages (Sotheby’s).

See report in The Guardian.

Thanks to Pamela for drawing this to my attention.

 

The Book as Art

WKB18, the week of the book as a work of art, takes place in Groningen between 13-20 October. This will include exhibitions and symposia in 25 locations in the city (including the University Library). The second-hand bookshop, Berger & De Vries, on Pelsterstraat 27-29 is the information point for the events and will have some of the art books on sale.

Details of the events here.

wkb18

Cockygate and Romance E-fiction

Kindle Unlimited’s algorithms have prompted some e-book authors to cash in on specific terms or cover images. This is a modern twist on an old practice of following on the tails of paper bestsellers.

The fight over #Cockygate, as it was branded online, emerged from the strange universe of Amazon Kindle Unlimited, where authors collaborate and compete to game Amazon’s algorithm. Trademark trolling is just the beginning: There are private chat groups, ebook exploits, conspiracies to seed hyperspecific trends like “Navy SEALs” and “mountain men,” and even a controversial sweepstakes in which a popular self-published author offered his readers a chance to win diamonds from Tiffany’s if they reviewed his new book.

www.theverge.com/2018/7/16/17566276/cockygate-amazon-kindle-unlimited-algorithm-self-published-romance-novel-cabal

Her Cocky Doctors (A MFM Menage Romance) (The Cocky Series Book 1) by [Crescent, Tara]

Image from Amazon.com

Book sales up, authors’ incomes down and, of course, Brexit

A record-breaking year for publishers has been greeted with renewed demands for authors to receive a bigger slice of income and investment, as sales of books passed the £5.7bn mark in 2017. Book sales were up 5% on the previous year, according to annual figures released by the Publishers Association. In sharp contrast, a recent survey of authors’ earnings revealed a 42% drop over the last decade, with the median annual income now below £10,500.

Read more in The Guardian

The boss of the Publishers Association said any tariffs or other barriers to trade post-Brexit “could be a problem”. His warning came as the industry body reported record sales of £5.7bn in 2017, up 5% on the previous year. Exports rose by 8% to £3.4bn, to account for 60% of total income, consolidating the UK’s position as the biggest exporter of books in the world.

read more on the BBC website

Book Sales up

Total sales of print and digital books and journals climbed 7% to £4.8bn last year, the largest growth since 2007 when digital sales were first included.

Looking purely at the book market total sales rose 6% to £3.5bn, as an 8% rise in print sales outweighed the 3% decline in ebook sales.

Overall digital sales grew 6% to £1.7bn, with academic, professional and educational journals outstripping the fall in ebooks, to account for 35% of total revenues.

Link to The Guardian for full story

Thanks to Brian for pointing this out.