Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Smashwords: Smashwords Year in Review 2014 and Plans for 2015

cat searching
Let's see. Am I the only one?
Panzer headed out in the Panzermobile to find out what was going on in the Catosphere today. It is the end of 2014 and my big bad boy wanted to know what his Catosphere friends have been doing all year.

So, when my kitty reporter stopped in at the Smashwords blog, he was pleasantly surprised to find a post there that answers all his questions about Smashwords' year. Owner Mark Coker posted his annual Smashwords' year in review. Included in the post is what he's got planned for Smashwords in 2015. According to Mr. Coker, Smashwords is growing bigger with more and faster distribution channels, more authors and books, and more employees.

Panzer says, "Hmmm. Smashwords has 100,000 authors. I wonder how many are cats besides me?"

To read the post, tootle over to Smashwords: Smashwords Year in Review 2014 and Plans for 2015:

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Author discontent grows as Kindle Unlimited enters its fifth month ⋆ The Digital Reader

So sad. I thought you loved me.
Panzer headed over to The Digital Reader site today.

My big bad (Christmas is over, he doesn't have to be good anymore) kitty reporter found a post there by Nate Hoffelder about Kindle Unlimited. According to Mr. Hoffelder, some authors are unhappy with the amount of their payments from Amazon Kindle Unlimited. Turns out authors are finding their sales are not what they expected. After paying a monthly fee, there are 750,000 ebooks in KU that readers can choose from and those readers aren't displaying author loyalty anymore.

Panzer says, "You mean my readers don't love my catness enough to read all my books one right after another?"

To read the post, tootle over to Author discontent grows as Kindle Unlimited enters its fifth month ⋆ The Digital Reader

Monday, December 29, 2014

A New Panzerism

But fun.
Panzer on Celebrating New Year's Eve:

Same thing every year:

Skip my late, late nap.

Munch some catnip,

pass out,


spend the rest of the night snorting carpet dust.


Saturday, December 27, 2014

Barnes & Noble Buys Nook Stake

I wonder. Will it? or Won't it?
When Panzer went out in the Catosphere today he discovered that while he was buying presents for the holidays, Barnes & Noble was busy buying their own present.

Turns out according to Jim Milliot of Publishers' Weekly, B&N was busy buying Pearson's holdings in Nook Media. B&N now owns 100% of Nook Media. This will allow B&N to spin off the Nook Media portion as a separate entity in the near future.

Panzer says, "Hmmm. I wonder, can Nook survive on its own?"

To read the full post, tootle over to B&N buys Nook stake

Thursday, December 25, 2014

Happy Holidays

Merry Christmas
To All Our Friends
In The Catosphere

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

A Not So Merry Christmas Story

Not Merry? You're kidding, right?
Panzer was out in the Catosphere doing the last of his holiday shopping and he stumbled over this FREE Christmas story at Anne Frasier and Theresa Weir's blog.

Panzer says, "Don't be fooled by the title, this is not a Merry Christmas story."

To read a not so nice Christmas story, tootle over to Merry Christmas

Monday, December 22, 2014

A New Panzerism

Panzer on human narcissism:

I have joined Mom and What's His Name at backyard barbecues with neighbors, coffee and tea on the deck in the mornings, and holiday season dinners with their family.
You can't change what is.

One thing stands out to me at these gatherings:

Mom is always the second most attractive creature there.

Too bad she has such an attractive cat over-shadowing her.

Saturday, December 20, 2014

Macmillan-Amazon-Apple-Subscription Services

Got to finish my shopping!
Panzer has been so busy this week getting ready for the holidays he completely missed this announcement about publisher Macmillan.

Jim Milliot at Publishers' Weekly posted about Macmillan's new book agreement with Amazon. But reading the entire post you'll discover Macmillan is still tied to Apple as far as discounting their ebooks is concerned. You'll also discover Macmillan intends to put their backlist books into the subscription service companies.

Panzer says, "So Macmillan may have a new contract with Amazon, but they're still tied to Apple and they plan to jump into subscription readers services. That's an interesting contract."

(Reminder: Did you check out yesterday's link to William Shatner's Kickstarter project?)

To read the post, tootle over to Macmillan

Friday, December 19, 2014

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Apple Says Price-Fixing Is Okay

Trust me. It's for your own good.
When Panzer entered the Catosphere today, the Panzermobile started getting buffeted around. My big strong kitty pilot regained control and discovered it was raucous laughter that was causing all the steering problems. Following the trail of laugh bubbles lead my boy to The New Yorker site.

According to Vauhini Vara, Apple's lawyers' argument before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit is that Apple fixed prices to benefit ebook buyers. Apple (and the big six publishers) felt it was necessary to fix prices and force Amazon to match those prices. In that way Amazon would lose market dominance because of Amazon's low consumer-friendly ebook pricing.

Panzer says, "That's right. All you guys got together and raised your prices. It was for my own good to make me pay more."

To read the full post, tootle over to Apple

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Free Fiction: Chains by Kristine Kathryn Rusch

Oooo! Ghosts!
It's been such a l-o-n-g time since Panzer visited Kristine Kathryn Rusch's site that he decided to stop in there today.

My big black kitty found Ms. Rusch has a FREE Christmas ghost mystery story available there this week. We all know how much my kitty boy loves genre hopping stories, so he couldn't wait to come back and let you know about it.

Panzer says, "Here's another holiday gift."

Important Note: This story is only FREE this week, then it goes back to regular price at all the e-tail stores, so hurry.

To read the full story, tootle over to  Free Fiction Monday: Chains

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

3 Fiction Markets Accepting Submissions

Just for fiction writers.
Panzer was out in the Catosphere today looking for markets for fiction writers.

My good kitty boy's first stop was at Lynn Viehl's The Paperback Writer site. He found two market anthology calls there. You can read the requirements at Paperback Writer

My speedy little adventurer then stopped in at Sandra Seamans' My Little Corner site. He found another fiction market call for submissions there. You can check it out at My Little Corner

Panzer says, "Just a holiday present for my friends."

Monday, December 15, 2014

A New Panzerism

The dent? The big guy with the deer.
Panzer on the holidays:

Do I think those look like my paw prints on the hood of the car?

Noooo ...

From here, I'd say they're reindeer prints.

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Friday, December 12, 2014

Apple E-book Price-fixing Appeal Continues

Just admit it.
Panzer got up from his noon nap today to bright sunshine. My adventuresome kitty hopped into the Panzermobile. Unfortunately, when he got into the Catosphere he ran into a hail of crying and yowling. Following all the noise got him to the Publishers' Weekly site. There he found a post by Andrew Albanese about Apple's upcoming appeal of their loss in their price-fixing case.

Back on December 2 my kitty reporter told you about Apple's appeal. The appeal will be heard before the Second Circuit Court of Appeals on December 15. In his post Mr. Albanese addresses the issues Apple's attorneys will argue to convince the court to overturn Judge Denise Cote's verdict in the original case. Then he addresses the Department of Justice's rebuttal to those issues.

Panzer says, "Just take the money you're giving your attorneys and pay it to the ebook buyers. It would save you a lot of money in the long run."

Warning: This is a v-e-r-y l-o-n-g post and you'll need more than one cup of tea to read the whole thing.

To read the post, tootle over to Apple E-book Appeal

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Game of Thrones Compendium Submissions

Follow me!
Panzer stopped in at the GalleyCAT site today.  If you're a "Game of Thrones" fan, my good boy kitty reporter found a post by Maryann Yin that's just for you.

According to Ms. Yin, HBO is putting together a compilation of material from fans! They'll include artwork, music, crafts, and much more from fans of the show. Of course, there will be judges who'll decide what will be included. Submissions are due by March 28, 2015. If you're included in the book, you'll get a byline/credit and a free copy of the book. The post includes links to the rules.

Panzer says, "Mom, get the camera, while I make a costume!"

To read the post, tootle over to Game of Thrones Compendium

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Douglas Preston and Authors United vs. Amazon Continues

Panzer was trying to take a nap this afternoon when he got bounced out of his cat bed by some whiny noises coming from the Catosphere. Against his better judgement my poor tired kitty boy took the Panzermobile out to track down the crying. It didn't take long to find the source of all the tears in a post by Judith Rosen at the Publishers' Weekly site.

It turns out best selling author Douglas Preston and his Authors United group is still  chasing after Amazon and nipping at its heels. Mr. Preston isn't satisfied with Hachette and Amazon's contract agreement and hopes to hamstring the bookseller by siccing the U.S. Department of Justice on it.


Amazon is too big. They sell too many books.

And ...

And this is the really big reason ...

Really? You don't know how?
Amazon doesn't treat books as authors' children ... they treat books as commodities, like TVs and diapers. According to Amazon, books don't need to have their noses wiped and their diapers changed. Books are to be sold.

Panzer says, "Um, Mr. Preston, apparently that's one of the big differences between cats and humans. Cats know where babies come from and it's not from pushing keys on a keyboard."

To read the full post, tootle over to Douglas Preston

Monday, December 8, 2014

A New Panzerism

Don't soak your paws in it, either.
Panzer on good health:

If you want to add salt to your food, I don't recommend Epsom Salts.

Saturday, December 6, 2014

J.K. Rowling, Pottermore and Christmas

Harry Potter gifts.
Panzer was over at GalleyCAT today.

My good kitty reporter discovered it's beginning to look a lot like Christmas at Pottermore. According to Dianna Dilworth, J.K. Rowling will be giving away a gift each day from December 12 through December 23.

Panzer says, "There's only 19 days until Christmas, but whose counting?"

To read the full post and instructions, tootle over to J. K. Rowling

Friday, December 5, 2014

Barnes & Noble and Microsoft Agree To Divorce

Being good is really, really hard.
Panzer took a trip to the Publishers' Weekly site to check out a whispered rumor he heard today.

According to a post by Jim Milliot my big good black kitty found there, Barnes & Noble and Microsoft have agreed to an amicable divorce. Mr. Milliot says B&N will buy out Microsoft's investment in Nook Media. B&N will then be free to divest itself of Nook Media. Nook Media owns Nook and the college book stores section of B&N.

Panzer says, "Can Nook survive as a standalone?"

To read the full post, tootle over to Barnes and Noble

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Britain To Levy 25% Google Tax

I'm not going over there.
Panzer woke from his nap this afternoon to yowling. My adventurous kitty jumped in the Panzermobile and followed the wailing and gnashing of teeth to The New York Times site. He found the source of all the noise in the Bits section of the site in a post by Mark Scott and Stephen Castle.

According to the post a draft legislation to levy a 25% tax on Google and other multinational companies (Amazon) will be presented to Britain's Parliament on December 10. It is expected to pass.

Panzer says, "Let's see. You have the EU VAT and now a 25% tax on sales. Why do you want to chase all these businesses out?"

Warning: Another b-i-g cup of tea as this is a long post.

To read the whole post, tootle over to Google tax

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

A Christmas Tree Of Books

I am a good kitty, Santa.
Panzer stopped in at GalleyCAT today.

My big good kitty found a cute little video to get you into the Christmas spirit. Learn how to make a Christmas tree from all your books.

Panzer says, "There are no ornaments on the tree. Those Christmas balls are my favorite part of the tree."

To watch the video, tootle over to Christmas tree

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Apple December E-book Appeal

Panzer took some time off from his Christmas shopping to stop in at the Publishers' Weekly site. He found a post there by Andrew Albanese about Apple's appeal of their price-fixing case.

Making a list; checking it twice ...
Apple lost the price-fixing case back in 2013. At that time Judge Denise Cote ruled for the Department of Justice that Apple had participated in price-fixing of ebooks. Apple's appeal is based on what they say was circumstantial evidence used by Judge Cote in making her decision. The appeal will be heard on December 15.

Panzer says, "Boy, Apple's attorneys are making a litter box full of money on this case. It's been dragging on for years."

Be warned: There are several links included in the PW post, so you better have a b-i-g cup of tea.

To read the post, tootle over to Apple Ebook Appeal

Monday, December 1, 2014

A New Panzerism

Panzer says:
I can't get that taste off my tongue.

Soap bubbles just don't taste as good as they look like they should

even ...

the second time.