Monday, April 28, 2008

Perhaps those Chinese protesters, denying others the right to free speech during the Olympic torch relay, should follow their own advice and go home First byte: A cool idea to warm to by Cold River
Historic nobodies feature in Cold River When fiction is not enough "Wise people store up knowledge - Eternal vigilance the price of freedom

Falling waters Sobel Reflects
Jofie Ferrari-Adler's latest interview in the Poets & Writers series with publishing veterans is with agent Nat Sobel. Excerpts:

It's only been in the last twenty years, or maybe the last ten years, that I became aware, as did Judith [Weber], that we wanted the agency to reflect our tastes, rather than just take on things that were saleable. Our list is our taste. Which means that there are a lot of areas of publishing that we will not go into because we aren't interested in them. So we've never done any romances, for instance.
I think what is evolving today for agents is that they need to be the first line editors for their authors. Judith and I really love the editing process. We have spent years editing nearly every novel we've ever agented. We did that long before we began to discover how little editing was going on in the publishing houses. But today agents need to be far more proactive in almost every other area of the publishing process. We have to be the marketing directors for many of our books. We have to involve ourselves in looking at the jacket design, the jacket copy, the catalogue copy. We have to be very proactive in how we help direct the writer to help sell his or her book. Those are things you never thought about in agenting when I first came into it. You made the deal, you negotiated the contract, and that was it—the publisher took over

• For the life of me, I can't remember when I met Nat Sobel for the first time A Q&A With Agent Nat Sobel; [Writing is hard work-- and there are no shortcuts. When it comes right down to the nitty gritty, it's just you and that glowing computer screen. Discover writing markets from North America, Europe, Australasia and other places. It's free, so come and try it Naked Writing: The No-Frills Way to Write Your Novel!; Like some of the luckiest people in high tech, John Buckman made a mint on his first company and now dabbles in passion projects. Silicon Valley adage: Strike it rich once, you're lucky. Twice, you're smart. Free BookMooching Sells Books]
• · Art of drinking no frill milk in Australia Believe it or not – we have to live with this supermarket ; Technology has resulted in teenagers and young adults having a very different conception of privacy. The new digital paparazzi
• · Mark Story: Good knowledge management ensures continuing access to employees' know how, even when they move on. A look at how one organisation's (State Revenue Office, Victoria) systems mean they no longer rely solely on what's in the heads of individual staff Storing knowledge ; A trickle of cold river books about Australians at war has become a torrent The Digger distilled: When fiction is not enough
• · · Nabokov's last work will not be burned - Dmitri said, I'm a loyal son and thought long and seriously about it, then my father appeared before me and said, with an ironic grin, You're stuck in a right old mess - just go ahead and publish! The most concentrated distillation of [my father's] creativity; We don't need more books, we need better books. We're going to spend even more time to make sure that the products are right before they go out Elephant in the room
• · · · I love all forms of sisomo but this sisomo card created by artist/designer Julie Ruiz for VH1 is special. It’s proof again that the size of the idea isn’t always about the size of the budget. Light a candle for sisomo; One of the best fast food experiences I've enjoyed recently was in, of all places, Cincinnati. It's called Ingredients and it's healthy, fresh, tasty, a far cry from pizza and fried chicken, and it really is fast. Imagine a large, spacious production line with four production workers... Ingredients: Fast Food Heaven I'm not often in New York over a weekend, but when I am, my Sundays have a distinct pattern. It all starts with a lazy breakfast at one of the many neighborhood joints in Tribeca. Unfortunately, although I'm just across the road from Bubby's, it's become such an attraction it's lost its local charm... Weekend in NYC - The heart is what keeps Agatha’s designs pumping. She is a breath of fresh air in the jaded world of 'me-too' fashion
• · · · · Raymond Baker writes: the primary reason for the existence of Liechtenstein and some 90 other tax havens is to provide secrecy for illegally generated money to move across borders. I've researched this question all over the world (Capitalism's Achilles Heel: Dirty Money and How to Renew the Free-Market System, Wiley 2005) -- what is the basic motivation for use of money-laundering techniques, abusive transfer pricing, disguised corporations, and anonymous accounts? Most people think it is to avoid taxes or the risk of inflation or confiscation. Not correct. The basic motivation is the hidden accumulation of money, hidden primarily as to origin and secondarily as to purpose. Use of these techniques and facilitating structures is about piling up cash secretly in a foreign locale without having to share with employees, family members, and others locally or disclose the provenance or purpose of such funds. Which Is the Bigger Challenge: Tax Havens or High Taxes? ; If you were a member of the Wall Street aristocracy, one of those hedge fund hot shots who makes half a billion dollars a year, which horse would you bet on in the race for the White House? Mr. Obama? He backs something called the Stop Tax Haven Abuse Act, a measure that would limit all offshore accounts that the wealthiest hedge funds have set up. That’s not something Wall Street wants … So why is Mr. Obama such a popular choice among the hedge fund crowd?
In a word, access. Just like at the Bear pit … Unlike Mr. McCain and Mrs. Clinton, Mr. Obama is relatively new to national politics and is therefore open to bringing new people — and new money — into the tent. For money types who want a table, or at least to look involved and get an invitation to the right parties, Mr. Obama is the candidate. Then again, politics, like the markets, can change fast. As one hedge fund manager who is backing Mr. Obama said, “It is very possible I may change my mind.” They don’t call them hedges for nothing Hedge Fund Investing and Politics
• · · · · · I love your region’s energy, audacity and drive to diversify. The Gulf to me is guts, risk-taking and high adventure, supercharged by dreams: Beyond the Horizon; The digital revolution is transforming marketing, entertainment and technology everywhere. The boundaries between media and advertising, content and products, creator and producer, audience and critic are dissolving: To Survive, Print and TV Must Engage Consumers Radical Optimist - Why 'love' is the new black