Blame Canada – BookExpo in the Great White North in Trouble

As if we needed further confirmation that the publishing industry is in trouble, BookExpo Canada officials are leaning towards canceling this years show.  To put this in technical terms, this sucks the big one.  All the major publishers are pulling out, not willing to pay the exposition fees in order to show off their wares.  Here’s a quote from an article in Quill & Quire:

After confirming that Penguin Canada would not be attending, company director of marketing and publicity Yvonne Hunter told Q&Q Omni that the money that would have been spent on the fair is now going to be channeled into marketing. “We’re looking at the possibility of creating a travelling Penguin showcase to promote our key titles for the year,” Hunter explained. Such an initiative would be costly, she added, but would still be cheaper than attending BookExpo.

Despite this development, I  still think it’s too early to panic.   In the words of Sam Cooke, a change is going to come.   Don’t worry.  It’s a change for the better.  The new publishing industry will be more flexible, and I believe more open to a bigger pool of writers.  The money might not be as big as it once was.  The seven figure deals that are few and far between as it is will be fewer and farther between.  As I said before, publishers will be looking for books that are multimedia friendly.  Authors may have to change the way we approach the pitch, and be willing to expand our skills, but the opportunities will be there for us.   BTW – I don’t really blame Canada.

I leave you with my favorite performance of Sam Cooke’s song “A Change is Going to Come.”  Obama’s first mistake was not having Ben Sollee performing this at the inauguration celebrations that took place this weekend.  Instead, they had Bon Jovi singing it with Betty Lavette.  It should have been Ben and Betty.

A Change is Gonna Come… I hope

This is a follow up to yesterday’s post urging young people to change the current election system. This is my favorite musician, Ben Sollee, doing a Sam Cooke cover – A Change is Gonna Come.

A Few Honest Words

As we head into the homestretch of the presidential election, this Ben Sollee song perfectly captures what I expect, and rarely get from our politicians.  Just A Few Honest Words.  If only. 

Review of Ben Sollee – Learning to Bend

You may remember that I recently posted about a singer/songwriter/cellist by the name of Ben Sollee. I heard a brief interview with him on NPR, and I was intrigued. I have since purchased the CD, Learning to Bend, (actually downloaded it from iTunes), and listened to it about a half-dozen times. It would be much more if time would permit. It is soulful, at times haunting, and lively. This is a great collection of songs. Panning for Gold is my favorite. It contains very powerful lyrics set to a sad melody that is, as I learned from his NPR interview, about his grandparents who have been diagnosed with alzheimers. When you hear the song you’ll get the message. You’ll hear a little folk, a little R&B, a little bluegrass, and whole lot of talent if you buy this CD… or whatever you call a collection of songs by the same artist that you download from iTunes. Things were much simpler when we called them albums. Buy it, listen to it, tell your friends. This guy needs to be much bigger than he is. Here’s a clip of him performing Panning for Gold at WFPK Live Lunch.

Rethinking The Cello – Ben Sollee

sollee

I know, the cello, right? It doesn’t really conjure up anything beyond some painfully dull night at the symphony. But I was in the car kickin’ it with NPR blaring out of my speakers, bass thumpin’. Neighbors’ trippin.’ Basically everyone was playa hatin’ because I’m dope enough for public radio, yo… Anyway, they featured a musician/songwriter I had never heard of before. His name is Ben Sollee, and his instrument is the cello. It was actually very cool, and I’m going to get his new CD Learning to Bend. I found this video on Youtube for a song titled It’s Not Impossible (Boys Don’t Cry). Check him out! It’s a really unique sound.