News and Notes — 1/26/13

January 26, 2013 Uncategorized 0

artist’s conception of the interior of the BiblioTech  

Two interesting developments on the library front:   In North Carolina State University’s new library, robots bring you the books you want; the stacks are closed to humans.  (Flavorwire)  And Bexar County, Texas, is about to open BiblioTech, the first all-ebook library.  No bound books, just ebooks and ereaders. 

BBC News picked up on fantasy author Jim C. Hines’ cover pose fundraiser for the Aicardi Syndrome Foundation.  Hines (Libriomancer) has been pointing out the inherent sexism and objectification of women on SF and fantasy book covers for some time.  (I happen to agree with him.)  As part of his fundraiser, and to continue to spark discussion on the cover problem , Hines decided to post photos of himself mimicking particularly egregious poses.  You can read the BBC News article here, and see the entire series of poses, along with plenty of discussion, on Jim’s blog.  (You’ll need to scroll down and click on “older posts” for the earliest posts.)  After a while, several other authors joined the fun; the capstone is this cover pose featuring (clockwise from top left) authors John Scalzi, Mary Robinette Kowal, Jim C. Hines, Charles Stross, and Patrick Rothfuss:

Dear Author blogger Jane Litte offers up her 2013 Publishing Predictions, including a move away from Nook and ebooks by B&N, the purchase of Goodreads by either Random House/Penguin or Kobo, and flat growth for ebooks.  Litte was 5 for 10 for her 2012 predictions, so make of this year’s predictions what you will.

For a different take on the future of publishing, check out Mark Coker’s publishing predictions on the Huff Post’s Books blog. It’s a long and in-depth look at what’s been going on in the publishing world as well as where it’s heading. Coker is the founder of Smashwords, so there’s inevitable bias, but because of his position, he keeps very close tabs on what his publishing and retail sales competitors are up to, from Apple and Amazon to Penguin/Random House and Simon & Schuster.  It’s well worth reading.

An article in Publishers Weekly covers a recent Digital Book World panel discussion on the gamification of children’s books.

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