Archive for August, 2008

h1

A great day…

August 28, 2008

…that should remind us all of each individual’s inherent potential to shape the future. To change opinions. To bridge divides. To change the world.

That’s what the best books have always done.

I’m just saying.

–msg

h1

The webs one writer weaves to success

August 15, 2008

Author, journalist, and San Diego & Palm Springs conferee Darlene Quinn’s first novel, Webs of Power, is out Sept. 1. A “raw, unsentimental portrayal of greed, manipulation, and relationships set in the excessive, insatiable retail industry of the 1980s,” award-winning author Laura Taylor (Honorbound) proclaims, “Darlene Quinn expertly captures the drama, greed, and emotional tumult of personal lives gone awry during the hostile takeover attempt of a high-end retail chain.” And from Maralys Wills (Damn the Rejections, Full Speed Ahead): “With obvious ‘insider’s’ knowledge, Darlene Quinn has created a web of intrigue that draws the reader into the best and worst of the retailer’s world.”

Visit www.DarleneQuinn.net and Emerald Book Company.com to read all about it, and be sure to watch the book trailer for Webs of Power. Congratulations, Darlene!

–msg

h1

Quote of the Week — Alberge on Kafka

August 9, 2008

Backstory: Dalya Alberge’s article for The Times, concerns Franz Kafka’s pornography collection. ‘Nuff said? Not quite:

Hawes, an Oxford graduate and university lecturer, emphasises his total admiration for the literary Kafkaesque genius who wrote brooding classics such as The Metamorphosis, The Castle and The Trial, and argues that these discoveries merely show Kafka as more human than the popular image. He believes that “suppressing” them detracts from sensible assessment of his work, and has even led to nonsensical evaluation.

What? Did you catch it? Really, I’m not giving any hints on this one.

-bd

(Cross-posted from B.D.’s Last Refuge)

h1

Random House screws author, disses Mohammed

August 8, 2008

From its inception, through its publication, the anfractuous journey a book must make in effort to reach the ultimate reader can extend years. For some, even decades. For the author, even once the publisher has bought the manuscript, she can expect spending at least another year of massaging the prose to suit the needs of her editor before its release. A year in which an illustrator will conjure up a magnificent jacket for the book. A year in which the marketing department will brainstorm how to sell the book big, wide and long. A year in which a publicist will schedule book signings and endeavor to land favorable reviews in PW, Kirkus, The New York Times and beyond. A year in which some Big Brain at any one of the multitudinous strata of corporate levels responsible for publishing a book would muster up the gumption to stop all of this from happening way too late and for entirely the wrong, pitiable reason.

From today’s Reuters, by Edith Honan:

Publisher Random House has pulled a novel about the Prophet Mohammed’s child bride, fearing it could “incite acts of violence.”

“The Jewel of Medina,” a debut novel by journalist Sherry Jones, 46, was due to be published on August 12 by Random House, a unit of Bertelsmann AG, and an eight-city publicity tour had been scheduled, Jones told Reuters on Thursday.

The novel traces the life of A’isha from her engagement to Mohammed, when she was six, until the prophet’s death. Jones said that she was shocked to learn in May, that publication would be postponed indefinitely.

Full story

–msg

h1

Ballantine to publish Garfield Minus Garfield

August 8, 2008

One might wonder at the notion of a “meteoric” rise or ascent. After all, don’t meteors crash and burn? Thus, we should perhaps take a poll to figure how to describe the success of the web sensation Garfield Minus Garfield. For those unfamiliar with the project, it is easily enough described:

Garfield Minus Garfield is a site dedicated to removing Garfield from the Garfield comic strips in order to reveal the existential angst of a certain young Mr. Jon Arbuckle. It is a journey deep into the mind of an isolated young everyman as he fights a losing battle against loneliness and depression in a quiet American suburb.

Launched earlier this year, GMG has attracted tremendous attention, drawing thousands of hits each day from enthusiastic readers who view the doctored comic strips as something of an existential spectacle. Even the New York Times has entered the discussion, and among GMG’s fans is none other than Garfield creator Jim Davis:

Mr. Davis, who has been drawing Garfield for 30 years, said that “Garfield Minus Garfield” has actually prompted him to take a different look at his own work. He compared Mr. Walsh’s efforts to the cerebral approach of Pogo, the comic strip by Walt Kelly.

“I think it’s the body of work that makes me laugh — the more you read of these strips, the funnier it gets,” Mr. Davis said. As for Garfield himself, “this makes a compelling argument that maybe he doesn’t need to be there. Less is more.”

The latest addition to GMG fandom is Ballantine Books. Indeed, last month brought news that GarfieldMinusGarfield has a book deal. According to reports, the full-color book will place Dan Walsh’s manipulated frames beside Jim Davis’ originals. For his part, Walsh notes that, “[T]hanks to the awesome generosity and humor of Jim Davis, Garfield Minus Garfield is going to become a book and I’m absolutely honored to be part of it.”

Walsh will write a foreword for the book, which is tentatively scheduled for an October, 2008 release to coincide with a thirty-year retrospective of the legendary cat.

-bd

Garfield Minus Garfield — March 16, 2008

Garfield Minus Garfield — March 16, 2008