Monday, 21 August 2017

Book Marks: Books In Greece, Tweets Of Trump

"Independent publishing house Opera has been in business on Koletti Street in the downtown Athens district of Exarchia since 1996. Over the past seven years, proprietor Giorgos Myresiotis has seen 13 small publishers and book stores along this side street either relocate or go out of business." The Greek economic crisis has, unsurprisingly, hit bookshops hard. But it might not just be the economy.

Meanwhile, refugees stuck in Greece are getting some relief in the form of books:

...at least two separate initiatives have emerged to help refugees fill the long hours of their day.

One of them is Echo Refugee Library — a minivan fitted with shelves carrying over 1,000 books that does a weekly round of refugee camps in the greater Athens area, plus poorer districts of the capital where many refugees live in UN-rented flats.

...In another part of the city centre, a similar initiative draws Syrian and Afghan refugees to the offices of We Need Books, a volunteer group formed last year that also gives language classes in Arabic and French.



"Shannon Wheeler has spent much of this year poring over thousands of President Trump's tweets, and just when he believes he's lost the ability to be shocked, @realDonaldTrump hits a fresh nerve. 'I keep thinking I've been inoculated,' says Wheeler, an Oregon-based cartoonist, 'but then I read something new that [hits] like an adrenaline shot to the hypothalamus.'

"The fruits of Wheeler's creative endurance will go on display Tuesday, when the publisher Top Shelf releases his book 'Sh*t My President Says: The Illustrated Tweets of Donald J. Trump.'"



"Launched at [the Malaysian Book Publishing Association Fair], [Muhammad] Fatrim’s sequel Asrama 2 sold faster than the chicken burger from the food trucks downstairs. Unable to put a figure on it, Fatrim was jubilant." This piece on the Mabopa book fair quickly became a piece about Fixi and its outing at the Mapoba book fair, because.

But someone else feels different. This article is in Malay, but it highlights the sad state of Malaysia's book industry. The writer's focus appears to be on the "narcissism" of writers and agencies in writing and publishing what they want, not caring about the market or exploring avenues beyond what they find comfortable. She also seems to be issuing a call for the industry players to unite and free the country's increasingly ailing book industry. Will it be heeded?


Plus:

  • "Giving someone a book is like giving someone a piece of your soul. You may not have written it, but in reading it and experiencing it, a book has become a part of you. Passing it onto someone else is, in a way, like passing on that piece of yourself, too. Whether it be your interests, your dreams, your fears, your opinions, or your inspirations, you are giving someone so much more than paper and ink when you give them a book." That's one way to reorganise and declutter one's bookshelf.
  • The Russian publisher for American fantasy writer Victoria Schwab's Shades of Magic trilogy censored a romantic LGBT scene in the second book and, of course, people are not happy, including the author.
  • Still missing Michiko Kakutani? here's a New York Magazine article to snack on while you digest the fact tat she won't be limning any book plots any time soon. Also: "This week she signed a multiple-book deal with Crown's Tim Duggan Books. The first book, published next year, will be a controversial political book of her own, a cultural history of 'alternative facts' titled The Death of Truth." OMG, this is ... hold on, do I hear knives being sharpened?
  • A book that's coming out will reveal the alleged face of Banksy, the mysterious artist whose identity may have already been revealed, but people will not be allowed to share those images. How will they enforce that?
  • "...a Delhi court issued an injunction restraining the sale of a book on yoga guru Ramdev, after he alleged that its contents were defamatory. Written by Priyanka Pathak-Narain and published by Juggernaut, the book traces the early days and rapid rise of Ramdev, now the brand ambassador of the Rs 10,000 crore Patanjali group. The court passed the order ex-parte, that is, without hearing the publisher."
  • The errors in a book about a South African media personality is stirring a teacup storm in the country. What I found a little puzzling is how most of the online articles I'd read - all apparently from South Africa - just mention her name, as if expecting audiences to know who she is and what she does for a living.
  • "Increasingly, book publicists are working to get new hardcovers into celebrities' hands — not in hopes of a film option but a simple tweet, Instagram photo or Facebook post. These little endorsements can reach a much larger audience than an interview with the author on a popular television show or a rave review in a major newspaper. 'In previous times, you would have the Oprah or Daily Show bump,” says Todd Doughty, the director of publicity at Doubleday. “Now you have the Reese Witherspoon bump from Instagram.'" Y'know, this ain't so far-fetched. #Bookstagram is a thing.
  • "Amazon has rejected a Kiwi author's advertisement for her debut novel, stating the cover and content is too provocative. The strange thing is, one of web giant's own companies designed it." So what was offensive about the cover? "The cover features a woman's bare chin, neck and upper chest, with a hint of visible cleavage." O~kay.
  • This ad might have more than 600 words, but I wouldn't call it an article. But what it apparently sells: an app that reads some text and tells you who wrote it?

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