Weekly Roundup: 10/8–10/14

Kern Type ScreenshotKern Type: A Kerning Game

This may not appeal to many book people, but type nerds will appreciate this kerning game from Method of Action. From the game instructions: “Your mission is simple: achieve pleasant and readable text by distributing the space between letters. Typographers call this activity kerning. Your solution will be compared to [a] typographer’s solution, and you will be given a score depending on how close you nailed it. Good luck!”

Tony D’Souza: When to Stop Working on Your Book

Novelist Tony D’Souza describes all the work and years he put into his manuscript Voyage of the Rosa … and then explains how he let it go and started something else. Letting a book die is something many writers have a problem with. Having an objective eye to help you know when to let something lie is a huge benefit. Indie publishing means anything can be published, but not everything you write is something you should sell. D’Souza explains how his masterpiece became a monster; maybe his story can help you avoid similar pitfalls.

Amazon: Amazon Launches a New Imprint

Amazon is launching a new science fiction, fantasy, and horror imprint called 47North, and has announced the first run of titles.

Rose Fox: Someone at Amazon Launches a Speculative Fiction Imprint

In light of the 47North announcement, Rose Fox expresses concern that nobody seems to have stepped forward to claim the imprint from an editorial standpoint. She raises questions over whether or not the editorial side has much genre experience. She sounds a bit hostile (and she admits that she is), but she raises some good points regardless.

Stacy Whitman: FAQ: Muslim Protagonist

Editor Stacy Whitman of Tu Books answers a question from one of the writers submitting to her. The writer wonders if a Muslim protagonist isn’t relatable enough for a widespread audience. This writer really shouldn’t fear: he or she is submitting to Tu Books, which has the great goal of adding diversity into YA and middle grade science fiction and fantasy. In Stacy’s words: “When we say ‘about everyone, for everyone,’ we mean everyone. Except maybe Sauron.” In her post, Stacy focuses on what makes a character more or less relatable. Especially when you’re dealing with speculative fiction, that doesn’t mean your reader shares a background with the character.

Carolyn McCray: “Price Pulsing”

Over at Digital Book World, Carolyn McCray gives some Amazon-sales advice in her article, “‘Price Pulsing’: the Benefits of Dynamic Pricing on Amazon.” She describes a method of temporarily lowering your price for promotional purposes to boost you in the Amazon rankings before you put your book back at retail price. It’s essentially a sale, but McCray explains the strategy behind the sale.