Larry McMurtry on selling 300,000 books

Besides being a great writer, Larry McMurtry is a great bookseller.  The story of The Last Book Sale is a moderately long but fully fascinating: McMurtry wrote it up for the NYRB blog. Suffice to say that in August, McMurtry sold off the contents of several of his bookstores, to make sure he didn't burdenContinue reading “Larry McMurtry on selling 300,000 books”

If Barnes and Noble collapses, it’s the death of books

So argues Ted Rall, who knows a thing or two about media today and publishing: Borders and Barnes & Noble killed independent bookstores. Amazon killed Borders. Now Barnes & Noble, which sells more than 20 percent of pulp-and-ink books in the U.S., is under siege. If B&N collapses: the death of books. Cultural apocalypse. Neo-feudalism.Continue reading “If Barnes and Noble collapses, it’s the death of books”

Are run-on subtitles the flop sweat of publishing?

Bill Morris has a theory: In a marketplace glutted with too many titles – and in a culture that makes books more marginal by the day – publishers seem to think that if they just shout loudly enough, people will notice their products, then buy them.  In other words, the run-on subtitle is literature’s equivalentContinue reading “Are run-on subtitles the flop sweat of publishing?”

The plot escapes me, but the wraith of memory remains

In the New York Times Book Review, novelist James Collins admits an embarrassing secret. I have just realized something terrible about myself: I don’t remember the books I read… Nor do I think I am the only one with this problem. Certainly, there are those who can read a book once and retain everything thatContinue reading “The plot escapes me, but the wraith of memory remains”