Why not just throw the book at them?

I love the book. I love the feel of a book in my hands, the compactness of it, the shape, the size. I love the feel of paper. The sound it makes when I turn a page. I love the beauty of print on paper, the patterns, the shapes, the fonts. I am astonished by the versatility and practicality of The Book. It is so simple. It is so fit for its purpose. It may give me mere content, but no e-reader will ever give me that sort of added pleasure.

—Susan Hill

(Hat tip to The Passive Voice)

I respond:

I love the book. I love the weight of it in my hand, the heft of it. I especially love the hardcover book, the stiffness of the boards under the cloth. The satisfying thwack! it makes when I knock a book fetishist on the noggin with it. You can’t hit fools upside the head with an ebook.

From the pen of Sarah Dimento

First, cover art for my next collection of essais, Style is the Rocket:

Featuring the title piece and a Bunch of Other Cool Stuff.

[Read more…]

Isaac Bashevis Who?

From The Daily Beast (hat tip to The Passive Voice):

John Glusman, vice president and editor in chief at W. W. Norton, can still remember his first job in publishing. It was the summer of 1980 and he was fresh out of grad school, working as an intern at Viking. One of his duties was to file carbon copies of each week’s typewritten rejection letters. One Friday, as he burrowed into a filing cabinet, Glusman came upon an ancient rejection letter, written back in the 1950s. The book under consideration was a collection of short stories by an unknown author—in Yiddish.

The editor, obviously displeased at having to consider such an obscure book, scrawled on the typed rejection letter: “WHO IN HELL IS I. B. SINGER?”

Answer: the writer who would go on to win the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1978.

It’s nice to see that the Official Curators of Literary Culture in New York have always been doing the same bang-up job that they are doing today.

An experiment in widgets

I have just installed the Buy This Book plugin for WordPress, by Claire Ryan. I became aware of Ms. Ryan’s work when she followed me on tsū. (She has another plugin for newsletters, which I may try next if this one works well.)

You will notice, therefore, a new bit in the sidebar: ‘Books by Tom Simon.’ Click on a book cover, and you should get icons with links to Amazon and/or Smashwords, depending on where the title in question is offered. Click on the icon, and it should take you straight to the product page at the retailer. I would be much obliged if any of my 3.6 Loyal Readers would try this for themselves and make sure that it works. (You don’t have to buy the books, especially if you already own copies. I know that part works.)

In other news, tsū informs me that I have now earned, as my share of their advertising revenue, the glorious sum of (drumroll, please) ONE CENT!

At this rate, I shall earn $100 and be eligible to receive a cheque from them in just about 100 years. Of course, it is highly probable that my rate of earnings will alter somewhat in the meantime.