Marchbooks' Blog

September 24, 2009

Even More Cause for Concern by Janus Kane

Filed under: In the News — marchbooks @ 11:36 am
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It is sad to see that conservatives are still resorting to propaganda and personal attacks on the President and his administration. They are playing on people’s fear and creating hysteria.

I watched a Youtube video yesterday on a military presence in Ohio. What it amounted to was roughly 5 minutes of footage watching soldiers directing traffic. There was no threatening action, no guns were drawn and no one was accosted. It seemed clear that these soldiers were just there to support local law enforcement (for whatever reason). Periodically, the videographer would insert hyperbole that implied the military was there to force people to get vaccinated, but there was no visual evidence of that. There was even mention of concentration camps.

I wish that the conservatives would see how these attempts to panic people are causing a huge rift between Americans. Trying to push your neighbor into hysteria is cruel and counterproductive. What I find most offensive are the attempts to draw parallels between Obama’s presidency and Hitler’s regime. Come on people. This man is an elected official. He has been working non-stop, since his inauguration, to cure the imbalance that is plaguing our economy. If Obama is guilty of anything, it is being overly ambitious. Perhaps he has tried to tackle too much at once – that remains to be seen, but at least he is taking action, something that the previous administration cannot say.

I would hope that the conservatives can put their anger aside and start working together. That is what this country is all about, isn’t it?

September 23, 2009

All is Good in the Land of Words

If you have been following, you have probably noticed the absence of any new gripes about the publishing industry. I suppose that is because we are basking in the afterglow of the publication of our first two novels.

The Little Insanity
and Nightsweats in Bigelow Hollow

Sure, sales could be brisker and there is certainly no abatement of entries on the publication ‘to do’ list. However, the first hurdle has been met and conquered. The books are beautiful (alright, I’m biased). They are a pleasure to look at and feel good in your hand. So far, we have only discovered one small blip, in The Little Insanity, that was missed by editing. I won’t tell you where, you can find it yourself – I challenge you, lol.

We have gotten some good reviews on Amazon and M.J. had her first book signing a week and a half ago. It went very well. Although she did not sell out, she made a respectable showing for a first time author and we were able to donate a healthy percentage back to the charity that hosted the event. It was a wonderful win-win for everyone involved.

Work still continues on the website. Our shopping cart is still having issues. There are still numerous review copies to be sent out and marketing to bookstores and libraries continues unabated. Promotional materials must be designed and updated. We continue to look for new opportunities for signings and we are plunging, with both feet, into the editing of our next two titles – both by M.J. Claire, ‘The Invisibles and Bigelow Hollow Revisited (if you didn’t guess, this is the second in the Bigelow Hollow series). And, of course, we occasionally find time to blog.

So, yes, we are not bored, but we are infinitely happy. Love what you do and you will never work a day in your life. I wish the same for all of you. Until next time.

BothCovers copysmaller

September 18, 2009

Cause for Concern, cont. by Janus Kane

Filed under: In the News — marchbooks @ 1:20 pm

I am just ruminating on why there is such a dramatic rift between Obama supporters and those who are against the Obama presidency. It seems to be a disturbing trend. More and more, these two camps are solidifying. On one side, you have the people who like Obama (but are no longer over the moon about him) and on the other side, you have the people who hate our new President. Yes, you heard me right. Those who are opposed to Obama seem to have developed a deep, seething hatred for our current President and his policies.

One good thing, perhaps the only good thing, about George Bush is that, by the end of his presidency, he had pretty much unified people in their discontent over his performance. Even hardcore Republicans were finding it hard to get enthusiastic about Bush’s presidency. I wouldn’t call people’s dislike passive, but everyone seemed to be very clear on Bush’s incompetence. People seemed to be resigned to the fact that the nightmare was almost over and that Bush was more of a pawn than a player.

Things are different with Obama. I’m not sure if it is racism, thinly disguised, religious fervor, or the result of the new President’s strong presence, but the rumor mill has been working overtime.

The pervasive attitude among the malcontents seems to be that Obama’s politics are malicious and filled with subterfuge. No one is questioning his competence, but adversaries seem to think that his presidency is calculated to undermine our government, our ideals and our basic way of life.

I am not sure if it is a ‘chicken or the egg’ dynamic but the prevailing Obama hatred seems to revolve around an ever growing supply of propaganda (at least I hope it is just propaganda) about the new presidency. The claims get more outrageous every day: Obama is not a US citizen, Obama’s new health care bill supports the murder of infants and the elderly, Obama is trying to set himself up as a dictator, Obama is unpatriotic and subversive. So far, I have not found any substance in these claims. There is no evidence that Obama’s new bill is advocating the euthanasia of 2 year old children with disabilities or the elderly. Although Obama admits to having several Czars in his administration (an unfortunate choice of terms, in my opinion), this is and has been, a common practice since Roosevelt. Bush also had ‘Czars’ but I don’t remember anyone holding his feet to the fire about it.

There is also much talk about how Obama hates America and is only interested in subverting our way of life. Again, there has been no substantiated evidence of this. I am, in fact, relieved that Obama has taken to the network to confront these allegations head-on. I can only hope that conservatives will open their ears, set aside their prejudices and actually listen to what he is saying. Conservatives are clamoring that the majority has spoken and Obama is acting counter to the majority vote. Well, the majority voted Obama into office. Now we need to give him the opportunity to do what we asked him to do, lead this country.

The task has fallen on Obama’s shoulders to guide this country through the most trying times we have seen in decades. He is trying to do that. Let’s give him the opportunity and the support to be successful.

BothCovers copysmaller


September 16, 2009

Yet Another Human Cruelty by M.J. Claire

Filed under: Comments from our Authors — marchbooks @ 3:01 pm
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Have you ever wondered about the price of that egg on your plate? I have to confess that I never did. I always considered eggs to be one of the less cruel food choices I could make. Apparently I was wrong. See the article that changed my mind.

What an eye opener this article is. I didn’t/couldn’t watch the video, but I may have to force myself to bear witness to this cruelty. I am always appalled by the way ‘human beings’ trample anything that does not serve ‘our grand purpose’. I was completely ignorant to this horror. I have lived w/the belief that eggs are a source of protein that does not require the murder of its animal donor, just like milk. Why is it always necessary for people to bastardize everything in their pursuit of the almighty buck? This is a brutal and wasteful practice, however, as ignorant as I was in regard to the egg industry, I have no such delusions about the chicken industry & I have to wonder if we would be doing these chicks a favor by relegating them to that system. It would be great to snap our fingers & eliminate the use of fowl/livestock for food. I doubt that will happen in our lifetime. The problem is extensive. Even if we called a halt to this practice tomorrow, what would be the fate of those birds? We, as a country, cannot even treat the animals we consider to be our pets humanely. Livestock does not even have a fighting chance. Add to that the fact that these industries often attract people who enjoy inflicting abuse on smaller creatures (after all, who else would willingly take such a job?) & the outcome is predictible. Awareness, however, is the first step. It takes sites like this to wake people like me from our blissful ignorance.

September 1, 2009

Revolutionizing the Publishing Model

Filed under: On Writing and Publishing — marchbooks @ 3:37 pm
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Viva la Revolucion. If you have been reading my blog, you know that I believe the publishing industry has some catching up to do. It seems as though they have been napping for the past hundred years or so. The current publishing model. The result is a very wasteful industry that offers less and less for their non A-list authors. Change has to come, even if it comes kicking and screaming. Has it arrived? Are publishers finally starting to see the light. This wonderful article by Bob Miller gives me hope that the revolution is upon us.

What a wonderful concept: a fifty-fifty split. The author brings his creative work to the table and the publisher brings his bank book, they then split the profits. Now, each party is completely vested in the publication, marketing and promotion of this book. I can hear the nay sayers screaming and beating their breasts from here. ‘It’s not fair. Publishing is expensive. We’d be losing money hand over fist. It’s just not fair!’

What is not fair is asking an author to hand over the rights to the product of their labor for a meager 5-10% royalty.  Even without layering promotion/marketing money and time by the author, this does not seem equitable. The author is at the bottom of the totem pole as the bookseller takes their 35% and the publisher distributor takes the lion’s share after printing costs, leaving precious little for the author. That author has become a second class citizen in the sale of his own book, despite the fact that he is essentially creating jobs for everyone in the food chain. So why are there only scraps left for him?

This model presented by Harper Studio is overdo but very welcome. Congratulations on your creativity, responsiveness and bravery in beginning changes in an industry that is entrenched in the past – kudos to you. I hope that more publishers will follow your lead.

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