SEVEN Free eBooks: Mercedes Lackey

November 6, 2008

Mercedes Lackey

Mercedes Lackey, author of the bestselling Heralds of Valdemar and Bardic Voices series, began life as a child and has been attempting to rectify that error ever since. Named for actress Mercedes McCambridge, she has been trying with no success to get the Benz automobile authorities to recognize the natural link between her name and theirs, and offer her the use of an M100 or some variety of high-end sports car for gratis. This, too, has had a distinct lack of success. Other than writing she can be found at various times prying the talons of the birds of prey she is attempting to nurse back to health out of her hands, endangering her vision by creating various forms of Art Beadwork, and cross-stitching dragons, gryphons, and other semi-mythological fauna. At the moment, her hair is red, her favorite color is green, and she is covered by various members of her flock of pet parrots, cockatoos and macaws, all of which are trying to help her type8shgalal-akejbejks9ife.

These are free eBooks of printed ones published by Baen. Click on each title for a description.

– via Twitter from top_book

One Strange Way … Is Strange

November 6, 2008

I found this looking through a bunch of new Twitter Followers. One is @onestrangeway.

One Strange Way is the title of a “digital graphic novel with interactive features.” What it will run on, I don’t know.

There’s a development blog — but updates stopped in June. Updates seem to be via Twitter now.

Go to the site itself and see the video trailer. That’s where I stole that above illo.

Podcasting To Get Ginormously Big!

November 6, 2008

Apple Activates Podcast Downloads in 2.2 Firmware

Podcasting has become one of those things that I’m surprised to learn still exists.

My sampling of it discovered a horrific morass of sub-amateur production values with a very high noise-to-signal ratio and a very low information-to-time-spent value.

Plus, getting them was a pain in the ass.

I don’t want to subscribe and feel the pressure of having to listen. Also, I’m not someone who has iTunes open every day, so things would tend to back up — a sensation I’m certain people who read RSS via Google Reader can sympathize with!

Now it looks like it’s just about official that direct-to-iPhone podcast delivery is coming.

This is going to blast podcasting out of its small niche into ginormous audiences.

I don’t know how podcasts are made available via iTunes (I dimly remember it was, in the past, generally a free and easy-to-do process), but this is something that every writer should investigate (I’m looking at you, Cliff Burns!).

Let me remind you what podcasting did for writer Mark Jeffrey:

His first podiobook, Max Quick 1: The Pocket and the Pendant, has received over 2 million downloads to date.

And that was while getting a podcast was a pain in the ass! Imagine how monstrous the potential will be once Apple makes it tap-tap impulse easy!

(Here I am at the end of this post and I need to add this for the abominable Kindle kultists: STFU about how great wireless delivery is. I get it. I just don’t want that fugly locked-down no-ePub no-public library K!)

eBook Notes: Thurdsay, November 6, 2008

November 6, 2008

Some noise about Apple and eBook at MacWorld Expo in January: Apple to sell eBooks by Macworld ‘09? Gee, where have I heard that before?

World’s #1 Manufacture of Matcha Aiya America Creates Free Informative eBooks Available Online – Press Release

Los Angeles, CA—October 28th, 2008—Aiya America, the world’s number one producer of Matcha green tea, announced that it is releasing the first in its tea themed educational eBook series to inform its consumers, as well as industry professionals, about such topics as the tea making process, the health benefits of green tea, ingredient uses for Matcha, quality assurance, safety and other areas of the company’s expertise.

Usually I give free eBooks a post of their own, but this is “almost-free.” You must provide name and email address for it. It’s a PDF.

ebrary’s QuickView Gives Browser-based Access to Ebooks/Documents

Addressing one of the most frequently lamented barriers blocking library patrons’ access to ebook and electronic materials, ebrary recently announced the launch of a web-based reader for their content platform, used by more than 1400 libraries worldwide.

The report says it also works with the iPhone and iPod Touch.

Happy endings as Ashcroft buys stake in McNab’s eBooks

Lord Ashcroft, the deputy chairman of the Conservative Party, has taken a stake in the mobile phone eBook venture of Andy McNab, the SAS soldier turned author.

Lord Ashcroft, left, has bought a minority holding in Spoken Entertainment Group, worth “millions of pounds”. The group, which launched in May this year, will use the cash to expand into the German and US markets.

Tony Lynch, co-founder of the firm alongside Andy McNab, said: “We’ve only been in existence for six months, but we’ve been caught by surprise at the extent of the interest. It’s gone mad.”

Customers of can text the group to pay for text or audio versions of a range of books that are sent to their mobiles.

The “Ashcroft” bit caught my eye. I thought it was our evangelical mutant. I wouldn’t have posted this if it wasn’t also for an interesting money-oriented Q&A with McNab at the Telegraph.

At HuffPo (which seems not to employ proofreaders): On Books and Ebooks

eBooks get social, pose further threat to traditional publishers — this is a Q&A with a site I still maintain has the worst damned name for an eBook store: Smashwords. This bit caught my eye:

Q. Who owns the content, and how do you compensate the authors?

A. We put the author in complete control over their published works. Our publishing agreement is non-exclusive. We give them 85 percent of the net sales proceeds of their books.

Emphasis added by me.

Hey, Bezos, you read that?

Willkommen bei Hixbooks!
Welcome to Hixbooks! [Google machine English]

An Austrian site/store offering both the Cybook and one version of the iLiad eBook readers. What’s interesting is that they will offer German-language eBooks. This might get around the eBook price-fixing in Germany.