Tuesday, April 26
Book Country by Penguin Group
Update (August 16, 2016): It looks as though Book Country no longer exists.
Penguin Group's latest venture is Book Country, a website for writers of genre fiction. According to a New York Times article by Julie Bosman, Penguin says that the site is intended to help build a community of writers by, among other things, giving them the ability to comment on and critique the manuscripts of other writers.
In addition to forming a community of writers and telling them a about how the traditional publishing industry works; agents, agents and publishers can swing by bookcountry.com and look for new talent, giving writers who use Book Country a way to get in contact with industry professionals that they wouldn't otherwise have.
One thing I was curious about. Penguin said that in a few months time they will attempt to generate revenue from the site by giving members of Book Country a way to self-publish their books for a fee by ordering printed copies. I'm not sure what that means. However, given the recent success of ebooks as a publishing format I wonder why Putnam is putting emphasis on printed copies which are far more expensive to produce and store than electronic copies.
It will be interesting to watch and see what happens.