Wednesday, August 17

Amazon signs self-help author Timothy Ferriss

The writes:
The online retailer's aggressive move into publishing has continued with its signing of bestselling self-help author Timothy Ferriss
Ferriss is author of the New York Times bestsellers The 4-Hour Body and The 4-Hour Workweek, which promise, respectively, to help guide readers "to rapid fat-loss, incredible sex and becoming superhuman" and to "escape the 9-5, live anywhere and join the new rich". The 4-Hour Chef will, said Amazon, build upon the "4-hour" philosophy "by transforming the way we cook and eat". It will publish the book in print, digital and audio formats next April.

Ferriss, whose previous books were published by Random House imprint Crown, said that his decision to move to Amazon Publishing "wasn't just a question of which publisher to work with. It was a question of what future of publishing I want to embrace.

"My readers are migrating irreversibly into digital, and it made perfect sense to work with Amazon to try and redefine what is possible," said the author in a statement. "This is a chance to really show what the future of books looks like, and to deliver a beautiful experience to my readers, who always come first. I could not be more excited about what we're doing."

Kirshbaum, vice president and publisher of Amazon Publishing in New York, said The 4-Hour Chef was "a watershed work, and an ideal way to launch our new publishing imprint in New York". But although Kirshbaum told the New York Times that "[Amazon's] success will only help the rest of publishing", mainstream publishers are nonetheless likely to be troubled by the latest show of dominance from the online player.

"Amazon's foray into book publishing ... is obviously a concern. They have very deep pockets and they are now a very, very powerful global competitor of ours," HarperCollins UK's chief executive Victoria Barnsley told Radio 4's The World at One yesterday. "They're this weird thing. We call them frenemies ... They are very, very powerful now – in fact they are getting close to being in a sort of a monopolistic situation. They control over 90% of physical online market in UK and over 70% of the ebook market so that's a very, very powerful position to be in. So yes, it is a concern."
Read the rest of the story here: Amazon strikes first 'major' publishing deal

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