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Joe Konrath

‘Barry Eisler Walks Away From $500,000 Deal to Self-Pub’

In a recent interview, novelist Barry Eisler said he turned down a $500,000 book deal and decided to self-publish his work.

The revelation came in a 13,000-word interview with novelist Joe Konrath. Eisler last published with Ballantine Books, but his self-publishing experiment began with “The Lost Coast,” a $2.99 short story. Konrath quipped: ‘Barry Eisler Walks Away From $500,000 Deal to Self-Pub’ is going to be one for the Twitter Hall of Fame.”

Here’s an excerpt from the interview: “There’s a saying about the railroads: they thought they were in the railroad business, when in fact they were in the transportation business. So when the interstate highway system was built and trucking became an alternative, they were hit hard. Likewise, publishers have naturally conflated the specifics of their business model with the generalities of the industry they’re in. As you say, they’re not in the business of delivering books by paper–they’re in the business of delivering books. And if someone can do the latter faster and cheaper than they can, they’re in trouble.”

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Huffington Post Meets Publishers Weekly with The Gatekeepers Post

The publishing industry is a startups market, and its transformation is worth watching with a bucket of popcorn. Jeff Rivera, the book publishing executive and author (Forever My Lady,Warner Books, 2007, etc.) who also writes for our sister blog, GalleyCat, has announced the launch of a new online community for the book publishing industry. The Gatekeepers Post features book-centric reviews, headlining news, articles and op-ed pieces, as well as virtual panel discussions and online conferences.

“I’m a news junkie,” Rivera told mbStartups, but he found that publishing didn’t make the headlines as often as other industries, despite the rise of eBooks and other game-changing events. When he found himself arguing with his editors about semi-colons more often than major industry trends, Rivera decided to take action.

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