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Nothing is more Difficult…

07.01.2010, No Comments, Uncategorized, by .

“Nothing is more difficult than to introduce a new order.”

“Because the innovator has for enemies all those who have done well under the old conditions and lukewarm defenders in those who may do well under the new.”

Taken from Machiavelli’s THE PRINCE.

It is very unlike me to quote Machiavelli.   But this hit me when I started reading Pip Coburn’s excellent book THE CHANGE FUNCTION.   He uses it to start the book.   It’s perfect for describing what is happening in Book Publishing today.   The Publishers who have been in control for the past few decades are being seriously threatened by the new upstarts and the Accounts.   There is revolutionary change in the industry.  

Some of the corporate publishers will thrive and others will die.

Some of the independent publishers will thrive and some will die.

Some of the key bookselling channels will thrive and some will die.

So, it is a good time for the rules to be challenged.   Look at doing things that have not been done.   Chaos is good.  It leads to new players and new a new order.  

I have spent most of my career in traditional publishing.  Now I spend almost all my days in the experimental part.  It’s all good.  It is always best to respect the past and build on it.

Winners and Losers are being determined…

 

 A random look at a bookcase.  Filled with trade paperbacks.  These books are for reading but also art.  They are an insight to the various aspects and interests of the owner [collector]. 

Books are to be collected. 

Books are to be displayed.

Books are to be smelled.

Books are to be touched, browsed and written in.

Books are to be read.

This is why a good trade pb book case will alwsy be an insight to the mind.   It represents who we are.  So, display them and discuss.

THE STAND and THE ROAD

11.02.2009, No Comments, Uncategorized, by .

These are two of my favorite books.  Both deal with the end of the world.  But I am not a ‘downer’ type of person.  I still enjoyed both of these books. 

 THE STAND by Stephen King is over 1,000 pages and comes in near 500,000 words.  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

THE ROAD by Cormac  McCarthy is about 300 pages and comes in at 200,000 words.  

Both powerful, both a similar message, but very different is length.

Twins v Yankees

10.10.2009, Comments Off on Twins v Yankees, Uncategorized, by .

Last night the Yankees pulled another miracle win against the Twins.  I don’t believe in a jinx, but I do believe there comes a time that CONFIDENCE gets shattered.  The Yankees have defeated the Twins 23 out of 25 games in Yankee Stadium since 2002.  That is 92%!  

This year they have won 4-5 games in the last at-bat.  Last night, in game two of the playoffs, the Twins lost in 12 innings.  They got robbed with an obvious missed call that turned a Twins double into a foul ball.  But the Twins still had the bases loaded with 0 out.  They still couldn’t score.

   I am not really anti-Yankee.  But I like the logo.  I just feel so bad for Minnesota.  It is embarrassing.  So how does it come to this point that one team dominates the other so much?  This has been ongoing for seven years. 

I believe the Twins lack the belief that they can win, and then when small things go against them, they view it as some omen that they are going to lose.   It is all over their expressions.  It is all over their attitude.  It is a cancer and almost impossible to break. 

Almost impossible.  There are many examples in sports of one team dominating the other and then finally a break through.  The Red Sox came back down 3-0 in games to the Yankees and stormed back to go to the World Series, then they swept the Cardinals.  The jinx was lifted and Boston has been better since.  In college football, Michigan State has won two in a row verses Michigan for the first time in almost 40 years!

I thought this post was leading me to some profound answer as to how teams can overcome this rut.  But I can’t.  There is no magic bullet.  But CONFIDENCE must be restored.  CONFIDENCE comes from within.  So, it will be up to each member to reach inside and believe. 

Believe in yourself first.  If you do, others will believe in you.  If you don’t believe in yourself, why should others?

I expect the Twins will continue to be dominated by the Yankees.  It’s sad.

Jake and Elwood

09.18.2009, No Comments, Uncategorized, by .

     

OK, I like all types of movies.  One of my favorites is THE BLUES BROTHERS.  I realize the plot is slim and the story just doesn’t always follow logic [like why were The Good Ole Boys so angry at them?  They arrived so late that they couldn’t have played at the bar anyway].

But, the movie makes me laugh.  Jake and Elwood are one of the best teams in all of movies.  It was never the same after Belushi died and there should have never been a BLUES BROTHERS 2000.  No Jake, no movie.  But what is done is done.

What also makes the movie so classic is it re-introduced me to so many amazing blues legends:

  •  Aretha
  • James Brown
  • Cab Calloway
  • John Lee Hooker
  • Ray Charles

The music in the film adds to the greatness.  In addition to the legends listed above, the band that backed up Jake and Elwood are some of the best in the world.  Steve Cropper, Duck Dunn, Matt ‘Guitar’ Murphy, Tom’ ‘Bones’ Malone, etc…   So damn good.

Also — all the great cameos and actors throughout. 

I will post more in the future, but wanted to get this strand started.

George's Path

eBooks are all the rage.  The next step in the 500 year history of the book.  This is a bold new world and people are confused.  The future is not so certain.

  • What % of books are currently eBooks?  (most put it at 2%). 
  • What % will it be in a year? 
  • 2 years?  5 Years?  10 years?
  • When will the eBook surpass the pBook?  Will it ever happen?

I don’t have the answers.  But then no one really does.  We all have guesses.  We all put the facts together, place our bets and hope we are on the right path.  It is important to be engrossed in eBooks, to accept them as another format of  reading.  If the consumer chooses to read an eBook, why should the publishers refuse to provide?   

Too many take too slow a path, too cautious.  One day, they will wake up and realize that the readers will have left them.  Hopefully it won’t be too late.

“Ten years will pass me by, no one told me when to run, I missed the starting gun.”  ——– Time by Pink Floyd.

A interesting side note.  This market is nearly impossible to get reliable statistics given the main players are keeping information confidential.  I understand their reasoning, but one day it will all be open.  Many discussions revolve around the Kindle, Sony Reader and a possible entry by Apple into the mix.  That is all great and each has it’s merits.  But right now, over 60% of the eBook readers do so on laptops and computers.

St. Louis Cardinals

09.01.2009, No Comments, Uncategorized, by .

The St. Louis Cardinals have won more World Series championships than any other National League team.    They have won 10 times and played in 17 Fall Classics.  

1926; 1931; 1934; 1942; 1944; 1946; 1964; 1967; 1982; 2006.

Abbey Road

09.01.2009, No Comments, Uncategorized, by .

The Gravedigger  //  The Corpse  //  The Pallbearer  //  The Minister

  • Abbey Road was the last Beatles album recorded.
  • But Let It Be was the last Beatles album released.

LIVE WEB CAM at Abbey Road

Another Use for Physical Books?

08.31.2009, No Comments, Uncategorized, by .

I love books printed on paper.  I love eBooks too.  But an eBook can not replace everything a physical book can do.  This photo was taken at the Rock Ctr J.Crew.  It may be hard to tell, but this is a ‘tree’ made out of books.   A full circle approach.   Caught my eye…

Yes, physical books still make great decorations.

IMG_0408

The Beatles

08.27.2009, No Comments, Uncategorized, by .

Saw this poster in a window of a video game store.  I recently read in the NYT that the Beatles are the only group listed as a favorite in every age group.  They were in the top 5 with teens all the way to seniors.  They transcend age and have done more to break down generation gaps than possibly any other single force in the past 100 years. 

 

BEATLES

This poster illustrates this observation.  It will be the top selling game this Fall.   My favorite Beatles song?  So hard to pick, but REVOLUTION 1 is near the top.   Plus, all books about the Beatles sell.