This week’s batch of prizes includes one for budding poets, another for authors who have not published a book yet, and one for nonfiction writers. Deadlines range from May 1-15.
Southwest Review (SWR) is now accepting submissions for the David Nathan Meyerson Prize for Fiction. The prize is open to writers who have not yet published a book of fiction, either a novel or collection of stories. Entries should be no longer than 8,000 words. No simultaneous or previously published work. The winner will receive $1,000 and publication in SWR. Entry fee: $25. Deadline: May 1, 2014. For more information, please visit the website.
Ruminate Magazine is currently accepting submissions for the Janet B. McCabe Poetry Prize. All submissions must be previously unpublished work. Entries can include two poems, no longer than 40 lines each. The winner will receive $1500 and publication in the Summer 2014 issue. The runner up will receive $200 and publication. Entry fee: $20. Deadline: May 1, 2014. For more information, please visit the website.
Jan Constantine, General Counsel of the Authors Guild, is testifying before the House Judiciary Committee this afternoon on mass digitization of books and so-called orphan works. Those topics, of course, are at the heart of two Guild lawsuits, Authors Guild v. Google and Authors Guild v. HathiTrust. An advance copy of Jan’s written testimony is available below.
Here are three highlights:
Out of print books only
1. We’re proposing that Congress empower the creation of a collective licensing organization (something like ASCAP or BMI) to deal with both mass digitization and “orphan” books. Such an organization would pave the way for a true national digital library, but it would have to be limited in scope, just as ASCAP is.
Here are the key components:
A. Authors get paid for the uses, naturally.
B. Licenses would be non-compulsory. Authors get to say no.
C. Licenses would cover out-of-print books only. No disrupting commercial markets.
D. Display uses only. No ebooks or print books.
E. There would be a tribunal to go to if the licensing agency and an institution couldn’t agree on the fee.
Such agencies are already in place around the world, licensing limited photocopy uses of books. They all license orphan books as part of the package.
There are millions of out-of-print copyrighted books. Making these books available would have an enormous societal benefit and bring our nation’s great research libraries to computer screens at our smallest colleges and most remote rural libraries.
Guild says 1963 copyright hearing “eerily prescient” of Google’s book scanning project
2. A Copyright Office hearing on February 20, 1963, is eerily prescient about what was to come. (Irwin Karp, legendary and curmudgeonly counsel for the Authors Guild and Authors League was there.) It’s as if everyone saw Google and its mass digitization of books under the banner of fair use coming. Not only that, they addressed it in legislation – it was an early hearing for what became the 1976 Copyright Act.
UMI found “Orphan Row” authors decades ago
3. Fifty years ago, people knew how to find authors and other rights holders of books, they didn’t just declare out-of-print books to be “orphans”. UMI, Bell & Howell, and 3M raced to see which company could pre-clear the most books for the new print-on-demand technology. UMI boasted it would “go to Timbuktu” to clear rights.
And, get this: Remember “Orphan Row,” our term for the list of 100-plus books that HathiTrust was preparing to release in ebook form? UMI cleared the rights to seven of them decades ago, long before the Internet made searching for rights holders easy. It’s amazing what you can find when you really want to find it.
Here are some “snippets” from that 1963 hearing, followed by the list of Orphan Row books UMI had cleared rights for by the 1970s.
KAMINSTEIN (Copyright Register): I was going to hold this for later on, but I have a telegram from Reed Lawlor, who says, “I suggest you consider adding the following section 6: ‘In any event reproduction of a copyrighted work in machine readable form for use in the analysis, citation and reasonable quotation of the work by means of an information storage and retrieval system shall be considered a fair use.’.” We were going to hold this for the discussion of fair use, but I certainly have no objection to opening up the subject here. Did you want to comment on it?
“The Internet long ago revamped publishing and bookselling,” wrote David Streitfeld in The New York Times. “Now technology is transforming the writing of fiction, previously the most solitary and exacting of arts, into something nearly the opposite. It is social, informal and intimate, with the result not only consumed but often composed on the fly.”
Wattpad is the new way to tell stories. More than 2 million writers produce 100,000 pieces of material a day for 20 million readers. For free. For nothing. Charles Melcher, host of an annual Future of Story Telling conference, told The Times, “Now that everyone’s been given permission to be creative, new ways of telling stories, of being entertained, are being invented. A lot of people are lamenting the end of the novel, but I think it’s simply evolving.”
Allen Lau, Wattpad’s chief executive, was interviewed at the company’s office in Toronto. He said, “Almost all our writers serialize their content. Two thousand words is roughly ten minutes of reading. That makes the story more digestible, something you can do when standing in line.”
Readers respond to the writers. The Times said that traditional publishing is watching Wattpad closely, “not only as a source of new talent but also for techniques to increase reader engagement.” But the writers go unpaid.
This week’s recent and upcoming books by our members include titles by Sarah Albee, Sarah C. Campbell, Cynthia Ceilan, Thomas J. Davis, Marc Eliot, Michael Fedo, Robin Jones Gunn, Robert D. Kaplan, Barry Lopez, Craig Nelson, Neil Russell, and Barbara Brown Taylor. Titles under the jump.
This week’s batch of contests is mostly for poets, though Ninth Letter is offering up prizes in multiple genres. Deadlines range from April 25-30.
Tulepo Press is currently accepting submissions for the Berkshire Prize for a First or Second Book of Poetry. Submissions must be in English; translations are not eligible, nor are previously self-published books. Submit a previously unpublished, full-length poetry manuscript. In terms of page limits, 48 to 88 pages of poems is suggested, but all manuscripts will be read and given full consideration, regardless of length. The winner will receive $3,000, publication by Tupelo Press, 20 copies of the winning title, a book launch, and national distribution with publicity and promotion. Entry fee: $28. Deadline: April 30, 2014. For more information, please visit the website.
The Iowa Poetry Prize, open to new as well as established poets, is awarded for a book-length collection of poems written originally in English. Manuscripts should be 50 to 150 pages in length. Submissions should be postmarked in the month of April. The winner will be published by the University of Iowa Press under a standard royalty agreement. Entry fee: $20. Deadline: April 30, 2014. For more information, please visit the website.
“An ambitious young writer can’t simply write: he or she must link, tweet, podcast, and brand.” That advice comes from James Wolcott in the April Vanity Fair.
In his column, Wolcott wrote, “The brandmaster of flash is Malcolm Gladwell, who has parlayed his platform as a social-trends reporter for The NewYorker into a series of popularizing bestsellers (Outliers, The Tipping Point) and princely sums on the speakers’ circuit. His face was planted on the sides of New York buses to publicize his latest book, David and Goliath, a fitting place for the Carrie Bradshaw of Starbucks intellectuals.”
One of Wolcott’s suggestions for becoming a brand: “Learn how to wait until Charlie Rose reaches the end of his question before answering, no matter how dusty long it takes.”
This week’s recent and upcoming books by our members include titles by David A. Adler, Marianne Berkes, Bruce Degen, Rita Gray, Arianna Huffington, Eloisa James, Susan Mallery, Emily Arnold McCully, Toni Morrison, Sharon Kay Penman, James Solheim, and William Stadiem. Titles below the jump.
This week’s batch of contests includes poetry, fiction, and nonfiction. The deadline for each of them is April 30.
The University of Pittsburgh Press is currently accepting submissions for the Agnes Lynch Starrett Poetry Prize for a first full-length book of poems. The award is open to any poet writing in English who has not had a full-length book of poetry published previously, with full-length being defined as a volume of 48 or more pages published in an edition of 750 or more copies. The winner will receive $5,000 and publication by the University of Pittsburgh Press. Entry fee: $25. Deadline: April 30, 2014. For more information, please visit the website.
Late Night Library is now accepting submissions for the 2014 Debut-litzer Prizes in the categories of fiction and poetry. Only debut books first published in North America between January 1, 2013 and December 31, 2013 are eligible. Debut novels, short story collections, and novellas are eligible in the category of fiction. Debut poetry collections and chapbooks are eligible in the category of poetry. The winner in each category will receive a cash award of $1,000 and a featured appearance on Late Night Conversation. Entry fee: $25. Deadline: April 30, 2014. For more information, please visit the website.
At last, the book business has become the background for a spy thriller. The author is Chris Pavone and the title is The Accident, published last week. His first novel, The Expats (2012), was a bestseller. He lives in Greenwich Village with his wife and twin sons.
“Any setting can be a good setting for a novel,” Pavone, 45, told The NewYork Times. Husband of a top publishing executive and a former editor himself, Pavone said that he used his experience in writing TheAccident. But in an early draft, he said, “I had thinly veiled versions of real people. I got rid of that.”
Pavone is now on a book tour and has already begun a third novel. This one will be set in the world of travel magazines. He said, “It offers compelling opportunities for a travel-writer protagonist to embark on a secret life of international intrigue.”
This week’s recent and upcoming books by our members include titles by Ron Argo, Joan Barthel, Marianne Berkes, Carol Cassella, Patrick A. Durantou, Holly George-Warren, Diane Goode, Kostya Kennedy, Eleanor Lerman, Dustin Long, Joseph Mazur, and Douglas Valentine. Titles below the jump.