Twitter mistakes, Barnes & Noble and more book news
Some book stories from the week that you may not want to miss, made quick and easy.
Twitter: Are you doing it wrong? Galleycat has made a great list of Twitter mistakes all writers should avoid. Except its No. 2 merits an amendment: Writing that your Twitter page should provide readers with a link to learn more about you, it says, "Give them a link to a Facebook page, personal website or Amazon page." Instead of a single bookseller (Amazon), consider a variety of sources that are closer to you -- and interview or article, a local bookstore or your publisher's website.
That author with that website everybody's talking about. J.K. Rowling, the woman who brought Harry Potter and his wizard world to life, is going to let enthusiastic readers have a hand in expanding his story beyond the seven books she's written. Whether you think the most exciting thing about her website Pottermore is: a) the chance to join in writing some Harry Potter stories; b) the fact that Rowling will be adding some never-before-seen material; c) that you can buy Harry Potter ebooks there for the first time; d) what her Harry Potter ebooks will mean for DRM and ebook selling; e) that you'll be able to buy other Harry Potter stuff there too depends on which kind of geek you are.
Barnes & Noble's good news and bad news. At Barnes & Noble, ebooks are finally starting to take hold; the company announced this week that it sold three times as many ebooks as physical books during its fiscal fourth quarter. The Wall Street Journal reports that although overall sales rose 4.7% to $1.37 billion, the company lost $59.4 million, or $1.04 a share. Meanwhile, Liberty Media Corp., the Colorado-based owner of the Starz cable channel, has made a takeover bid for the bookseller.
Some bookstores are charging for author events. The New York Times finds several bookstores that have begun either charging for author events or requiring the purchase of a book for attendance. The stores are located in Colorado; Menlo Park, Calif.; Manhattan; Salt Lake City; Cambridge, Mass. and Connecticut. So far, L.A. bookstore events are free.
Get a first look at "The Hobbit." Entertainment Weekly has pictures from the Peter Jackson adaptation of J.R.R. Tolkein's "The Hobbit," which stars Martin Freeman as Bilbo Baggins; Ian McKellan is back playing Gandalf. The film is set for release in December.
-- Carolyn Kellogg
Photo: A Barnes & Noble store and a statue of Seabiscuit in San Bruno, Calif. Credit: Justin Sullivan / Getty Images