The Casual Optimist

Books, Design and Culture

April 27, 2012
by Dan
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Something for the Weekend

Sturm und Drang — Author Nick Harkaway (Angelmaker and the forthcoming The Blind Giant: Being Human in a Digital World) on Amazon and the publishing industry for The Guardian: The most thunderous argument in Amazon’s favour is that the market has spoken, and demands cheaper … Continue reading

December 10, 2008
by Dan
1 Comment

Cautious Optimism

Books a better buy in Canada? After all the problems caused by the high Canadian dollar in 2007, Canadian publishers and booksellers are “cautiously optimistic” at the start of this year’s holidays according to Vit Wagner in the Toronto Star: … Continue reading

December 4, 2008
by Dan
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Whiskey Tango Foxtrot?*

There has been relentless torrent of grim publishing news coming out of New York the last few days. It has, at times, been hard to keep up with it all, and I don’t know the people involved well enough or … Continue reading

December 2, 2008
by Dan
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Don’t Panic

“The news heard ‘round the publishing world” is how Sarah Weinman described  the decision of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (HMH) — the US publisher of Philip Roth, Gunter Grass and José Saramago — to temporarily stop acquiring manuscripts. Certainly the story … Continue reading

November 14, 2008
by Dan
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Something for the Weekend

After a week of feeling gloomy about publishing, here are a few links to some less apocalyptic book-related stories that I’ve been reading: “Your…fucking…book” : Author Michael Lewis, who just happened to chronicle Wall Street’s excess in the 80’s in … Continue reading

November 13, 2008
by Dan
0 comments

Not Quite A Crisis

According Carolyn Reidy, president and CEO of Simon & Schuster, a worse publishing environment may be on the way, reports Publishers Weekly: Reidy said she hesitated to use the word “crisis” but “there is no question that we are currently … Continue reading

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