After putting out her debut, a plague novel titled Last Last Chance with FSG, Fiona Maazel has sold her second novel to Graywolf Press. Described as a “sweeping commentary on loneliness in America,” Maazel’s new book, Woke Up Lonely, features “a cult leader, his ex-wife, and the four people he accidentally takes hostage.” It’s scheduled to come out in Spring 2013. In the meantime, you can read her review of Ben Marcus’s The Flame Alphabet in our winter issue.
To the confusion of the publishers and people who have declared print is on its last legs, recent figures reveal that e-book sales are growing “incrementally,” not “exponentially.” While industry insiders had hoped that sales would increase by 25 percent in 2011, they only jumped 17 percent. Still, it’s an improvement from the year before, which only saw 9 percent of book buyers opting to purchase e-books.
Knopf publicity director Paul Bogaards is a funny man. In addition to his lively Twitter account (sample tweet: “Authors tweet because they covet the followers of other authors”), Bogaards has created a hilarious compendium of publishing-related posts on Tumblr. In 2011, according to a Bogaardian pie chart, this was mostly “Amazon, death of publishing,” “mind-numbing meetings,” “Steig Larssen blah blah blah,” and “drinking.” To usher in the New Year, Bogaards has put out a Top 100 Hierarchy of Book Publishing, which opens with “Brand-name authors (still),” moves through “Laura Miller when she is cranky” to “Laura Miller when she is not cranky,” and ends with “you.” Enjoy.
Graphic novel publishers Drawn and Quarterly have acquired the rights to vintage Pippi Longstocking comics, and will start releasing translations of the books this fall. The stories, written by Astrid Lindgren and drawn by Ingrid Vang Nyman, originally ran in Sweden’s Humpty Dumpty magazine between 1957 and 1959.
Today’s eBay find: Moby Dick typed out on six rolls of toilet paper, with bids starting at $400. “Considering what it’s been through,” the seller writes, “it’s in amazing condition.”