More on republished classics

I discussed previously my shock at discovering that some enterprising persons were taking out-of-copyright classics and turning them into new publications on Amazon. The example I discussed was a Jack London book, but now I have found any number of classic cookbooks which are appearing on Amazon for sale, in facsimile editions without any mention of who is in fact selling these books. Some are pretty good – the facsimile of American Cookery, 1796, which seems to be a Dover book reprinted from a facsimile published by Oxford University Press in 1958 looks at least legible. But recently I paid for a print copy of The English and Australian Cookery Book and when it arrived it was indeed a perfect facsimile but so small it was almost impossible to read at all. Someone – but who? – is making money from these books and there is nobody to complain to about the fact that some at least are virtually useless.

One would think Amazon, who is distributing most of them, should take responsibility for the quality of the books they sell. If it is a hapless indie author who has made some mistakes about which readers complain his account is likely to be suspended. What happens to these legal pirates?

Page 53, “Puddings and Pies”, from The English and Australian Cookbook, 1864, anonymous facsimile edition.

Trads vs. Indies: Will This War Ever End?

Reposted: Traditional publishing and the issue of editing – we need to look more closely at this.

The Let's Play Ball Blog

0601161425Traditional publishers will probably never embrace independent authors as equals. They will be loath to admit that the terms of engagement in this ongoing battle are changing, that the combatants are becoming more equal, and that some authors even find a way to go “hybrid.” It’s becoming increasingly clear that the trads are losing the high ground they once held in the area of editorial standards.

Examples of bad editing crop up more and more in the traditional world. For example, there are few authors more successful at traditional publishing than Anne Rice. She also specializes in the hottest subjects in fiction, vampires and werewolves. Yet Floyd Orr, editor of the long-running review site PODBRAM, and a rabid Rice fan, reports: “Anne Rice’s 34th book contains more errors than I have ever seen in a top-selling, traditionally published hardback! There are errors of every kind: repeated common words, misused spellings…

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