Thursday, October 31, 2013

The Big Ideas from Books in Browsers IV

Books in Browsers showcased several, new big ideas for digital publishing, including "Network Tense," "Collaborative Architecture," "Book Hacks" and more.
Confusing licensing rules, walled gardens, limited bundling, subscriptions, and library borrowing, buggy platforms. Why do we put up with this ebook nonsense?
From Books in Browsers:
If you couldn't make it to the annual Books in Browsers summit, or you want to relive your favorite presentations, find all the videos on Ustream.
More News from PP:
After years of being blocked by a hostile government, a PEN International Center has finally opened in Myanmar, with 23 active members.

Antiquarian Books News from Ibookcollector

The Winter Fine Art and Antiques Fair, Olympia 4 - 10th November 2013
Among the many interesting paintings and objects at The Winter Fine Art and Antiques Fair, Olympia 4 - 10th November 2013 will be a portrait of Mervyn Peake's mother by the artist.

PeakeMervyn Peake 1911-1968
Portrait of the Artists Mother
Oil on board, signed & dated (19)47
Image size: 15 ¼ x 11 ½ inches

According to exhibitor at the fair, Darnley Fine Art, his mother was anxious to go shopping and that is why she is looking bemused!

Mervyn Peake was an English writer, artist, poet and illustrator.  His Gormenghast novels are cult classics of 20th Century English literature.  The Gormenghast series comprises three novels originally published between 1946 and 1959.

The series consists of three novels, Titus Groan (1946), Gormenghast (1950), and Titus Alone (1959). A novella, Boy in Darkness (1956), tells the story of a brief adventure by the young Titus away from Gormenghast.

Peake also did illustrations for books by other authors including Lewis Carroll's Hunting of the Snark,  Alice in Wonderland and Robert Louis Stevenson's Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde, as well as producing many original poems, 'literary nonsense', short stories for adults and children, stage and radio plays. He also designed the logo for Pan Books.

Peak exhibited in the Sark Gallery and at the Cooling Galleries in London, also at the Royal Academy, the Leger Galleries and Calmann Galleries, and as his reputation grew was commissioned to produce portraits of well known people.

In 2008 The Times named Peake among their list of 50 greatest writers since 1945.

Winter Fine Art and Antiques Fair, Olympia.  4 - 10th November 2013. Tel 0871 620 7062   

Chelsea Antiquarian Book Fair

This year's Chelsea Antiquarian Book Fair will offer visitors an excellent opportunity to find the perfect antiquarian book among thousands brought to the Chelsea Old Town Hall by the 82 expert booksellers. The fair is open to the public on Friday, 1st to Saturday, 2nd November 2013.

On Friday, one of the world's leading experts on exploration and himself a travel book collector, Raymond Howgego, will be signing copies of his latest book Invented and Apocryphal Narratives of Travel. It is a comprehensive guide to invented, imaginary, apocryphal and plagiarized narratives of travel by land, sea and air, from the earliest times to the twentieth century. Although a separate publication, it also serves to complete the author's Encyclopedia of Exploration, a four volume, 3.7 million-word work dealing with voyages ad travels of indisputable historical reality, believed by many experts to be the largest unaided single-author work in the English language. The book costs £105 and will be available on the day. The book signing will take place at 5pm on the stage in the main hall.

On Saturday, visitors to the Fair can sign up to special book tours, designed to guide small groups around the Fair and point out some of the highlights. Specialist dealers will give advice to collectors or those interested in starting to collect books. The 30-minute tours are free, but a small donation to the Antiquarian Booksellers' Association's Educational rust will be encouraged.

The Fair will be open between 2pm and 7pm on Friday and from 11am to 5pm on Saturday. Tours and starting times are to be confirmed and will be advertised on the website beforehand.

Chelsea Old Town Hall is located on the King's Road, (opposite Sydney Street) London SW3 5EE; nearest underground stations are South Kensington and Sloane Square and many buses stop nearby. 

To Contact Ibookcollector
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Richard Wolfe on New Zealand's lost heritage

Richard Wolfe. When: Tuesday 12 November, 6pm
Where: Auckland Central City Library, Whare Wananga Level 2
Cost: Free

Richard Wolfe talks about his new book, a fascinating social and historical narrative in which he discusses 20 notable structures that no longer exist in New Zealand.

New Zealand has a disappointing record of preserving its oldest and proudest buildings. In his new book, well-known historian Richard Wolfe features 20 notable structures which, for various reasons, no longer exist. Most of the buildings have been demolished in the name of urban development, creating controversy and representing a damning indictment of this country’s sense of heritage. 

New Zealand's lost heritage by Richard Wolfe. Each building is illustrated and discussed, including the circumstances of its demise. The selection includes: Ruapekapeka pa in Northland (burned down deliberately), Admiralty House in Auckland (demolished to make way for new roads), Wellington’s Parliament Buildings (accidental fire), Invercargill’s Seacliff Asylum (fire) and TJ Edmonds' landmark factory (bulldozed).

What emerges is a fascinating social and historical narrative that sheds light on parts of New Zealand’s cultural history and reveals the truth of the old adage that history repeats itself. Wolfe’s emphasis on the significance of lost architecture presents a powerful appeal for preservation of the important works that remain.

Join us for a welcome glass of wine at 5.30pm before the talk commences. Books will be available for sale and signing.

Booking is recommended for this event. Please phone 09 377 0209 or email Ana Worner.

Richard Wolfe is a well-known social historian and author of more than 20 books on subjects from history to arts and culture. He works as a freelance researcher and writer in Auckland

Analysing religious poetry for the non-religious

An unusual religious background has left a Victoria University of Wellington Professor of English with a taste for secular writing containing religious ideas.

In his upcoming inaugural professorial lecture, titled ‘When You’re Dead You Go on Television: Sex, Death and Household Objects in Some New Zealand Poetry’,
Professor Mark Williams will examine New Zealand poetry that deals with death, the body and consolation.

When he was a child, his parents converted from the Christadelphian faith to Catholicism, although, he says, his father describes himself as ‘an atheist who loves church music’.

This experience led Professor Williams to develop an enduring fascination for art and literature in which there is no indication of religious belief, but where language or imagery associated with religious ideas still appear.

His lecture will include examples of poetry by New Zealand writers Bill Manhire, Jenny Bornholdt and Allen Curnow.

“I will also touch on the opposite ends of the spectrum—CK Stead who’s a militant atheist and James K Baxter who’s a militant believer—to provide a contrast with the writers who are in between the two.”

Professor Williams says his lecture will show that the legacy of religion belongs to everybody—not just religious people.

“Religion has power in our language, our thought, our writing and our art.”
Professor Williams specialises in researching and teaching both New Zealand and modern literature and has been published widely in both fields since the mid-1980s. He is currently working with Professors Jane Stafford and Ralph Crane to edit The World Novel to 1950, a volume of the Oxford University Press series, The History of the Novel in English. He is also editing a new History of New Zealand Literature for Cambridge University Press.

Vice-Chancellor Professor Pat Walsh says Victoria University’s inaugural lecture series is an opportunity for professors to share insights into their specialist areas of study with family, friends, colleagues and the wider community.

“Inaugural lectures are also an excellent way for the University to celebrate and acknowledge our valued professors,” says Professor Walsh.

What: When You’re Dead You Go on Television: Sex, Death and Household Objects in Some New Zealand Poetry

When: 6pm, Tuesday 5 November

Where: Hunter Council Chamber, Level 2, Hunter Building, Gate 1 or 2, Kelburn Parade, Wellington

RSVP by Friday 1 November. Phone 04-463 6390 or email with ‘Williams’ in the subject line.

Old favourites: famous children's books - an exhibition at Auckland Central City Library

Illustration by Milo Winter from Alice's adventures in Wonderland. When: 5 November 2013 - 23 February 2014, weekdays 9am - 5pm, weekend 10am - 4pm

Where: Sir George Grey Special Collections, Level 2, Central City Library

Cost: Free

An exhibition of classic and beloved books that have delighted children for generations, from Alice in Wonderland to Treasure Island.

The books we have read to us as children often stay with us for a lifetime. This exhibition shows some of the classic and well-loved children’s books that have delighted children over the years, as well as some newer favourites.

Many of the books on display are first editions, or the first edition with those illustrations. Some books in particular have caught the imagination of a number of illustrators and this exhibition features a selection of the most famous - Alice in Wonderland, Peter Pan, The wind in the willows, Treasure Island and Pinocchio. All are part of the Sir George Grey Special Collections children’s historical collection.

The books on display are fantasies, adventures, mysteries, stories of friendship and growing up, stories about animals and toys. Not all of them will mean something special to you, but we hope you will see your favourite books somewhere in this exhibition.

Pictured: Illustration by Milo Winter from Alice’s adventures in Wonderland, and, Through the looking-glass and what Alice found there by Lewis Carroll, 1916.

Jack Nicholson Deserves a Better Biography Than This

The Hollywood bad boy is taking on fewer roles—and dating less. Now would seem the time for a great biography to salute him. What we have instead is Marc Eliot’s dismal effort.

Nicholson? The title of Marc Eliot’s latest movie star biography is counter-intuitive to say the least. Who but an irate headmaster ever referred to Jack Nicholson by his surname? Surnames, you can almost hear one of his infectiously insolent characters saying, are for assholes. For the past four decades and more, since he shot to fame in Easy Rider, he has been known to all and sundry simply as “Jack”. It’s an absurdly connotative name: Jack the lad, Jack of Hearts, Jack Daniels, jack a car, jack up, jack… well, you can fill in the naughtier bits yourself. The point is that Nicholson is “Jack” or he is nothing—and that even before opening “Nicholson” you suspect Eliot knows Jack about “Jack.”

Jack Nicholson
Michael Ochs Archives/Getty

Which is a tad unfair. As a glance through Eliot’s Notes and Sources shows, he’s read (and relied heavily on quotations from) the many biographies of Jack already published, as well as pretty much every lengthy interview Jack has granted journalists down the years. True, Eliot has talked to a few of his subject’s friends and colleagues, too, but few of them have anything ear-popping to relate. Aside from the late Karen Black’s revelation that despite their mutual attraction for one another she and Jack never got it together, the closest the book gets to a scoop is Mickey Dolenz’s recollection of how Jack, turned away from a Bahamian casino for being tie-less and shirtless, didn’t explode in fury but merely showed “patience and reasoning” and went quietly on his way. The nice man cometh.

Not that he hangs around long. No biography of Jack Nicholson could long skirt the issue of his prodigious appetites. The bulk of Eliot’s book is given over to envy-filled accounts of its subject’s down and dirty bad boy antics. Of Nicholson’s early days in Los Angeles, in the mid-Fifties, Harry Dean Stanton says he “always see[s] him with a cheap red wine on his lips”. There was more on them than that, though. Shacked up with a bunch of fellow wannabe stars in what Eliot gleefully relates was “the wildest house in Hollywood”, Nicholson spent his days and nights on “round-the-clock partying, drinks, drugs, sex, lots of tea (the smoking kind), and beautiful, hot, willing girls who loved to get just as high as the boys”. Bliss was it in that dawn to be a-jive. Still, even as wide-eyed an acolyte as Eliot ought perhaps have wondered whether the story of Nicholson’s having smoked 155 joints during the shooting of one scene of Easy Rider might be, like, you know, a little far out, man.

Da Capo Goes Back to Press for Lou Reed - and other book news from the US


After Lou Reed's death on Sunday, Da Capo Press is hoping fans may want to turn to books to remember the iconic rocker. The press has two titles about Reed on its backlist--a collection of his lyrics called Pass Thru Fire (2008), and Clinton Heylin's visual history of Reed's band, The Velvet Underground, called All Yesterday's Parties: The Velvet Underground in Print, 1966-1971 (2005). Now, Da Capo is going back to press on both titles. more »

Lehane to Write Remake of French Pic: Dennis Lehane is attached to adapt the script for the remake of the critically-acclaimed French film A Prophet for Sony.

The Empathy Gap : Mark Liberman, for Slate, on how that study on literary fiction and empathy proves precisely nothing.

Ann Patchett: How I Write : The author talks about her friendship with Elizabeth Gilbert and Donna Tartt, the short story renaissance, and owning an independent bookstore.

Inside Scoop on Publishing : An interview with Steven Zacharius, president and CEO of Kensington.

Halloween Reading : It's not only Stephen King and James Herbert, you should be afraid of Cormac McCarthy and Kafka, explains the horror novelist, Joseph D'Lacey

Sycamore Row by John Grisham – review

Grisham's sequel to A Time to Kill is a solid courtroom drama about racial prejudice marred by a flawless white hero

Matthew McConaughey as Jack Brigance in the film of A Time to Kill
Too perfect … Matthew McConaughey as Jack Brigance in the 1996 film of A Time to Kill. Photograph: Allstar

When a reclusive Mississippi timber tycoon hangs himself from a sycamore on the edge of his estate, his handwritten will leaves the bulk of his fortune not to his two adult children, but to his black housekeeper. Seth Hubbard loathed lawyers. But he admired a young attorney called Jake Brigance who, three years earlier, had secured the acquittal of a black man accused of murder for killing the racists who raped his daughter – events chronicled in John Grisham's first novel, A Time to Kill, to which this is a belated but direct sequel.
    Hubbard sent his will to Brigance, instructing him to defend it "to the bitter end". He knew it would scandalise a community which, even in 1988, when Sycamore Row is set, could not abide the idea of a black woman inheriting – hell, just having – so much money. What, wonder the gossips, must Lettie Lang really have done for Hubbard to deserve such a gift?
    Just to complicate matters, there is another will – a more conventional one, that rewards the children and excludes Lang. Its existence raises questions about Hubbard's "testamentary capacity" in his final months – was he out of it on Demerol? Hubbard was such an enigma that inferring any kind of motive is tricky. But before he can represent the estate in what promises to be a gladiatorial trial by jury, Brigance must decode him, and fast.


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    Why Netflix Or Spotify For Ebooks Will Work


    Many publishing industry observers don’t think that Oyster or Scribd or any other “Netflix  or Spotify for ebooks” will work in the consumer marketplace.

    The rights issues are very complicated. Agents and authors may not go for it. Publishers may not go for it. Consumers may realize that it’s not worth their money. The list goes on.
    Yet, companies like these keep on popping up and there is considerable investment in the space. Scribd CEO Trip Adler believes that his company alone could turn the idea into a billion-dollar business. And he thinks there’s room for competition, too.

    At least one publishing industry analyst agrees with him. I talked with James McQuivey, Ph.D., an analyst at Forrester who covers the book publishing industry, about why it’s time for this idea to work and why the naysayers are wrong.

    Griselda Heppel on self-publishing: 'You have complete freedom!'

    Undeterred by publishers' scepticism, Heppel self-published her rewriting of Dante's Inferno for young adults, and found an audience

    • Ante's Inferno was recommended by ChrisM and trufflehunter. Scroll down to recommend your own favourite self-published books
    Infernal business ... Griselda Heppel. Photograph: Griselda Heppel

    Why did you choose to self-publish Ante's Inferno?:
      I tried the traditional route, sending my manuscript round to agents and publishers, and while some were interested enough to give me useful feedback on how to improve it, that was as far as I got. Most were baffled by the idea of a children's book based on Dante, and felt that young people wouldn't be able to cope with such disparate themes as Greek mythology and the first world war (which just shows how children's publishers can sometimes underestimate their readership!). I knew this wasn't a problem – Ante's Inferno had already been read by several dozen 9–13 year-olds who'd all loved it – and decided self-publishing was the answer.

      Tell us a bit about the book:
      Running from her worst enemy, Florence, 12-year-old Ante (Antonia) causes a terrible accident which plunges them both on a journey through the classical underworld, accompanied by Gil – a boy who died 100 years before the story begins. Set upon by Cerberus, Harpies, Minotaur and Furies, battling through rivers of flame and ice, all this is bad enough; worse is the doubt in Ante's heart that strengthens the deeper they go. Which, if any of them, will return?

      What are the advantages of self-publishing?:

      You have complete freedom! How and when you publish the book is entirely up to you. With Matador, it's six months between signing the contract and publication day; a traditional publisher usually takes much longer than that.
      I wanted Ante's Inferno to be a pleasure to look at and hold as well as to read, so I commissioned a dramatic wood engraving by Hilary Paynter for the jacket and worked closely with Pete Lawrence of Oxford Designers & Illustrators on the cover design. I could also make all the decisions over page design, typeface used, production quality, print run etc. Going with Matador (the self-publishing imprint of Troubador) meant that I had professional publishers to handle the whole process, and deal with pre-publication data, publicity, marketing and distribution.

      Harper Launches Reader App and Direct eBook Sales, Starting with CS Lewis

      Publishers Lunch

      HarperCollins has relaunched their CS Lewis and Narnia websites, adding for the first time a direct-sales ebookstore to both sites, selling Lewis's work in English in ebook editions in major territories around the world. As part of that new ebook sales offer, they have launched a branded Harper Reader app on iOS and Android. A customized version of the Bluefire Reader, it displays the encrypted EPUB files that Harper is selling -- along with digital "extras" that Harper is offering their direct customers. So when you download the app, it comes with an "exclusive" free copy of Beyond the Wardrobe: The Official Guide to Narnia. (Separately, Adobe -- which manages ebook DRM via Adobe Digital Editions -- revealed yesterday that the security breach they disclosed in early October was far bigger than initial reports, comprising 38 million customer accounts. You've probably gotten an email suggesting you change your ADE login.)

      Harper chief digital officer Chantal Restivo-Alessi says in the press release, "Launching a platform that allows HarperCollins to establish a direct-to-consumer marketing and sales proposition to expand some of its strongest brands to new audiences means we honor both our past and our present." She tells us "this is really meant to be a service offer for our authors" and says they began with the work of CS Lewis because "the estate was interested in having a retailing offer that they would be able to manage." Restivo-Alessi adds, "This is all a journey; we're starting to walk, slowly." She says they expect to have "a progressive rollout on different properties, as they tell us they are interested," but have no immediate plans for the next offers. The focus will be on adding direct ebook sales for particular brands and authors, rather than the entire HarperCollins catalog.

      Restivo-Alessi says that the current descriptive copy and sample screens shown in the Apple and Android app stores are misleading (showing a broad selection of Harper titles, and indicating the Harper Reader app provides "instant access to thousands of ebook titles") and will be corrected. The CS Lewis online offers also provide referral links to all major ebook retailers, so customers have choices available. The new offer "is not meant to be adversarial" with Harper's retail network, but rather is about "giving incremental options to an estate or author."

      More broadly, Restivo-Alessi underscores that "we're about providing as many services as we think we can deliver to our authors." Generally speaking the authors' proceeds are accounted for the same way when Harper sells direct as when they sell through etail partners. "We'll reflect the difference in [selling] costs, but we'll do the same splits."

      The How, What, and Why of Lean Mergers and Acquisitions

      John Styring, CEO of IglooBooks, talks about the process of acquiring another press, having just completed a successful acquisition of France's Elcy Editions.
      British multi-platform publisher YUDU is favoring publishing in the robust iBooks platform over stand-alone apps, which entail greater expense and risk.
      From Books in Browsers:
      If you couldn't make it to the annual Books in Browsers summit, or you want to relive your favorite presentations, find all the videos on Ustream.
      More News from PP:
      Despite strict censorship, Western authors are increasingly looking to have a shot at the fast-growing book market in China, says PP editor-in-chief Ed Nawotka in Deutsche Welle.

      Tauranga Arts Festival shines at half-way mark and looks to glorious end - Writers & Readers programme underway today

      Thursday 31 October starts the Writers & Readers programme in the TV3 Crystal Palace. Graeme Simsion, author of The Rosie Project talks about turning the book into a film, happy endings, and the writing process with Julie Thomas author of best-selling novel, Keeper of Secrets.

      A new event called The Book Club is at Trinity Wharf Tauranga on Thursday evening – an incredible line-up of writers in an intimate evening with just 45 audience members. Graeme Simsion (The Rosie Project), Julie Thomas (The Keeper of Secrets), Paul Moon (Encounters: the Creation of New Zealand), Tanya Moir (La Rochelle’s Road), Elizabeth Knox (The Vintner’s Luck), Fergus Barrowman (Victoria University Press) and Lynn Freeman will talk about such things as their own reading list, secret word-related habits, and they will have questions of their own to ask the audience.

      The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion is one of the hit novels of 2013. It started life as a screenplay before being published in January and translated into many languages. Graeme talks with Julie Thomas (author of hit novel, The Keeper of Secrets) and Lynn Freeman on Thursday 31 October and on Friday 1 November.

      Friday 1 November will see the launch of Elizabeth Knox’s new work, Wake,
      a novel about what it means to try to do your best and the consequences of keeping promises.  Elizabeth Knox says ‘‘It seems very fitting that I should launch Wake at the Tauranga festival. Tauranga is lovely, sunny, and hospitable - as is fictional settlement of Kahukura, a place inhabited by people just like us, where what is day lit, familiar, and homely has to hold out against fearful threats, in a story about the bad things that happen, and the good people do.’ – Elizabeth Knox’.

      The final days of the festival promise to be as energetic, as moving and as inspiring as the first. Festival organizers are extremely proud of the programme that is being presented and of the positive and excited reactions of the many who have attended events so far.

      Performances to come include Miss Fletcher Sings the Blues (Thursday 31 October, TV3 Crystal Palace), The Southgate Band (Thursday 31 October in Fairview Golf & Country Club, Katikati | Friday 1 November, TV3 Crystal Palace), The Eastern (Saturday 3 November, TV3 Crystal Palace), Duck, Death & the Tulip (X Space Baycourt, Friday 1 November – Saturday 2 November, 1pm and 6pm each day), Poetry & Song (Sunday 3 November, TV3 Crystal Palace, 1pm).

      Tickets to Writers & Readers sessions and other festival performances are still available at Baycourt Ticket Direct | 0800 224 224 |

      Private world of Charles Brasch revealed for the first time

      Charles Brasch – poet, literary editor and arts patron – was a pre-eminent figure in New Zealand arts.  He founded Landfall, New Zealand’s leading literary journal, in 1947 and remained its editor for the next twenty years.

      Charles Brasch Journals 1938–1945, spanning a crucially formative period in Brasch’s life, are the first ever to be published. Written in London during the Second World War, they give a vivid account of a restless young man ‘anxiously debating his future’. Is he a pacifist? Should he join the army? Is he homosexual? Are his poems any good?

      Brasch was a deeply private man. His daily journal was a place where he could explore personal questions frankly. ‘As communication with other people was not easy for him, his intimate conversation was with his diary,’ says Margaret Scott, who transcribed Brasch’s journals.

      On the question of his return to New Zealand Brasch writes: ‘I instinctively referred everything I saw to New Zealand, which is the alphabet of the world for me.’ Yet the thought of actually going back was ‘part vision, part nightmare’.

      ‘Some questions are resolved in the course of the journals,’ says Wendy Harrex, former OUP publisher, ‘others not, but it all makes compelling reading.’ 

      Charles Brasch Journals 1938–1945 is an irresistible read not least for the parade of people that feature in its pages: from friends and family to conscientious objectors, civil servants working at Bletchley Park (as Brasch was to do), members of the Adelphi Players, fellow fire wardens, refugees from Europe, and artists and writers both English and Kiwi.

      Brasch is ‘frank about himself as about everyone else’. This ‘lucid, honest, analytical diary’ gives a close-up view of the self-defining years of a young man whose quiet presence continues to radiate through the New Zealand literary and art scene.

      Charles Brasch: Journals 1938–1945
      Hardback, 245 x 170 mm, 648 pp
      ISBN 978-1-877372-84-1, $60
      Otago University Press

      New Christmas book in Te Reo Maori

      The latest book in Sharon Holt's popular Te Reo Singalong series is available next week. 'E hia nga moe?' is a Christmas countdown book and CD, which asks the age-old question 'how many sleeps until Santa comes?'
      The Christmas book is the fifth in the series and Sharon says it's a great way for parents and teachers to extend their use of counting in te reo. "With this new book, I'm showing people how to ask and answer questions about 'how many?' which will finally give adults and children something to do other than count from 1 to 10 in te reo!" she says.

      Sharon has three more books planned for her Te Reo Singalong series next year, including one about Matariki. In the meantime, she is looking forward to the Maori Language Awards ceremony on November 15. Her books made the finals of the awards last year and, this year, she is a finalist in two categories – with her books and her te reo pronunciation workshops. 
      For more information about Te Reo Singalong books, go to

      No, writing for free isn’t slavery, and other misconceptions about the economics of online media


      Summary: In an op-ed piece in the New York Times, an author complained about repeatedly being asked to write for free, but what he finds so insulting is something many others see as an opportunity — and it is not going away any time soon

      Even if you didn’t know that the media industry was in turmoil, you’d be able to guess that something was wrong based on how often financial questions seem to intrude into discussions about journalism and writing in general — questions like “Who is going to pay us? How are we going to make money?” and so on. The most recent eruption along those lines occurred on the weekend based on an opinion piece in the New York Times entitled “Slaves of the Internet, Unite!”

      Writing for free, of course, is nothing like slavery, as a number of people pointed out in their responses to the piece on Twitter. For one thing, it is largely voluntary. But author Tim Kreider’s argument is flawed in a number of other ways as well — and even contains the seeds of its own destruction in a way.

      Built for Caffeine by Ben Crawford

      Published by Beatnik Publishing on 1 November 2013 in Hardback, RRP$49.99

      A true celebration of Kiwi café culture, featuring some of New Zealand’s best-loved cafes, nationwide.

      In the land of the long black and flat white, it’s no surprise that some of New Zealand’s most innovative and original design is found in our cafés. In Built for Caffeine, Ben Crawford explores the beautiful, inventive and sometimes quirky interior design from 20 of favourite cafés nationwide, from Rawene to Auckland, to Tauranga and Cambridge, to Taupo and Wellington, to Christchurch, Queenstown and Dunedin.

      And if it works in a cafés, why not a house? Built for Caffeine contains Ben’s interviews with the owners, architects and designers of each café, retelling their inspiring stories before translating their fit-out features into design ideas and tips that you can use in your own home.
      Beautifully constructed, and featuring more than 400 of Ben’s stunning images, this book is sure to become a coffee-table staple, captivating homemakers, design lovers and cafés aficionados alike.

      ‘Written in Ben’s typically approachable style, he makes creative design accessible to the man on the street,’ – Herald on Sunday
      ‘Full of inspiration, Built for Caffeine reveals that fresh interiors and good coffee are often found in the same place.’ – Your Home and Garden

      About the author
      Ben was born and raised on a sheep farm in Southland. He made the move to the big smoke in Auckland in 2006 to pursue a career in marketing and has progressively turned more metro every year since.
      He’s also pretty handy behind a camera, teaching himself the art of photography many years ago. Since then he’s completed paid commissions around New Zealand and overseas, including Fiji and the USA.
      He runs an advertising agency with his sister Libby, creatively called Libby & Ben. Built for Caffeine combines Ben’s love of design, photography and coffee into one beautiful concept.

      For more information about Ben and his photography visit:

      Meet Ben:

      Saturday 9 November - AUCKLAND

      11.00 – 11.20am         Freedom Furniture Wairau Park Store
                                          19 Link Drive, Wairau Park, Auckland
      Ph:  (09) 443 3199

      12.30 - 12.50pm          Freedom Furniture Newmarket Store
      77 Broadway, Newmarket, Auckland
      Ph:  (09) 976 7900

      2.00 - 2.20pm              Freedom Furniture Mt Wellington Store
                                          Building 3, Apex Mega Centre
      393 Mt Wellington Highway, Mt Wellington, Auckland
      Ph:  (09) 573 0907

      Sunday 10 November - HAMILTON

      11.00 – 11.20am         Freedom Furniture, Hamilton Store,
                                          211-219 Anglesea Street, Hamilton
      Ph:  (07) 839 7660

      Thursday 14 November – CHRISTCHURCH

      11.00 – 11.20am         Freedom Furniture, Christchurch Store, Book Signing
                                          Homebase Retail Centre, 201 Marshland Road, Christchurch
      Ph:  (03) 983 4000

      Book launch invitation

      Unity Books and David Young warmly invite you to the launch of
      Rivers: New Zealand’s shared legacy by David Young, with photographs by Aliscia Young.

      Rivers chronicles the environmental challenges to our waterways over the past quarter century
      and the efforts of local communities and tangata whenua to protect them.

      Thursday 14 November
      6pm at Unity Books
      57 Willis St, Wellington

      Please RSVP by Monday 11 November to:

      Only the literary elite can afford not to tweet

      Anne Trubek - SF Gate October, 30, 2013

      • File photo dated September 11, 2013 shows the logo of the social networking website 'Twitter' displayed on a computer screen in London. Twitter's initial public offering (IPO) unveiled on October 3, 2013 indicates the shares offered will be a relatively modest percentage of what Wedbush estimates as a valuation of around $15 billion. Photo: Leon Neal, AFP/Getty Images
        File photo dated September 11, 2013 shows the logo of the social networking website 'Twitter' displayed on a computer screen in London. Twitter's initial public offering (IPO) unveiled on October 3, 2013 indicates the shares offered will be a relatively modest percentage of what Wedbush estimates as a valuation of around $15 billion.
        Photo: Leon Neal, AFP/Getty Images

      When I go to my office in the morning, I can talk with the editor of the Washington Post Book Review section about what he is reading, with author Gary Shteyngart about a review of Zadie Smith's novel or to the president of the Modern Language Association about the state of the humanities.
      But when I leave my office - logging off Twitter and going out the back door of my house - I can walk my dog up my leafy street and talk with baristas about the Browns, but rarely do I interact with book-review editors, novelists or literary critics. I live in Cleveland, a city that supports few such full-time jobs.

      Twitter has offered me an intellectual community I otherwise lack. It cuts the distance, both geographic and hierarchical. Not only can I talk with people in other places, but I can engage with people in different career stages as well. A sharp insight posted on Twitter is read, and RT'd (retweeted), with less regard for the tweeter's resume (or gender or race) than it might be if uttered at, say, a networking event. Social media is a hedge against the white-shoe, old-boys' networks of publishing. It is a democratizing force in the literary world.

      I credit Twitter with indirectly and directly allowing me to change careers from academic to freelance writer, to garner book contracts and to launch a new magazine. Plus, it has introduced to me colleagues with whom I practice what broadcast journalist Robert Krulwich calls "horizontal loyalty," or aiding others in similar career stages. Without social media, my ideas would have likely been smaller murmurs, my career more constricted and my colleagues fewer.