By Porter Anderson | @Porter_Anderson
From December 8, 2011
Part of my series of columns on publishing, Writing on the Ether, appearing Thursdays at JaneFriedman.com
A digital dogfight
Propellers spinning, exhaust plumes curling, wings tipped at disastrous angles. Rat-a-tat-a-tat. Pa-rum-pum-pum-pum. Shut up, Bieber. I mean Bieba. (Did he just sing, “I am a poor boy, too?” Very little drumma in him, if you ask me.) Fa-la-la-la-flame-outs on all sides! Get your goggles on and don’t let that scarf get caught in any spokes, Isadora.
We are surely dive-bombing into the gutbucket of publishing’s agonies now, Santa. I mean Santer. Get some guns mounted on that sleigh, ol’ bro.
Yo, Britannia rules wavy-grainy glimpses of ambered FutureBookings. No rose-colored glasses needed, the whole room is Piaf-pink and I regret nothing, damn it, Edith, except not being able to be there in person this year. We all look better under pink light.
Et sacre bleu, who let Hachette’s chat out of the tote bag? Wouldn’t you love to know how many of them it’s taking to write that leaky memo-in-progress? Mon Dieu somebody introduce them to an author.
Not you, Konrath, sit back down.
And could the drumma-beats out of Amazonia get any louda? Well, good tidings, this just in: Reuters says “Publishers have reached a kind of peace for now in their often stormy relationships with Internet giants like Amazon and Google.” Who knew? End of major combat operations. And here we were all dressed up like fighter pilots. Especially George. Kick back, let somebody else eat your lunch, for a change.
If you need me, I’ll be out Price-Check-apping a few items for Jeff Bezos. He asked me to get on that pronto, because, cara, we’re now in Italy, check it out: Amazon.it — Kindle: dispositivo di lettura wireless, schermo da 6″ a inchiostro elettronico, Wi-Fi
(Shh. We haven’t told Jeff yet that the Internet doesn’t work in Italy. Neither does the electricity, gas, water, Metro, or government.)
Allora, Mr. Bezos already bought himself the Black and Decker Trapano Avvitatore Asl148Kb to put his Christmas presents together quickly. Casa e cucina. Leaves more time to read those 450 books he just picked up. Libri per bambini
See? Now we know what that new bit of branding on the Amazon site means: Holiday Flurry Deals Week. I could have sworn on Monday during Missingham’s literary sortie in London that the same spot on the page said Battle of Britain.
It’s OK, flyboys and girls, you’ve come to the right place. I’ll just need access to your 1-Click settings. Perfect. Thank you. Ether is so calming, isn’t it? Inhale and count backward from ten. You’re getting sleepy, aren’t you? Good. Jeff and I have our eyes on a nice little publishing house for your present this year, you’ll love it.
Oh, yeah, the Cavendish buy included “‘Twas the Night Before Christmas,” you know. Merry bundling to all. And to all a good Scrivere sullo Ether.