Saturday, August 22, 2015

Do you Want to take a Vacation and Sell Books?


Aspiring booksellers and indie authors might have a new alternative when they are planning their next vacation. The Open Book in Wigtown Scotland is offering an Airbnb stay for the cost of £150 a week. You can sell books during the day and customize the bookstore to your liking and sleep above the location in a small flat.

If you decide this might be for you the Airbnd listing says you have to spend 40 hours a week working in the bookstore while living in the flat above the shop. You will also be given training in bookselling from Wigtown's community of booksellers, and you will also have the opportunity to put your "own stamp" on the store. "The bookshop residency's aim is to celebrate bookshops, encourage education in running independent bookshops and welcome people around the world to Scotland's national book town," says the AirBnB listing.

"I wouldn't call it a working holiday," said Adrian Turpin, director of the Wigtown book festival. "It's a particular kind of holiday [for people] who don't feel that running a bookshop is work. It's not about cheap labor – it's about offering people an experience … It's one of those great fantasies."

I think this vacation while working at a bookshop is quite endearing. If you ever had a dream of opening up your own bookstore, this will give you practical real world experience on what the day to day logistics comprise of. Indie authors will be able to sell their own books and setup their own display stands in order to try and hype their own novels.

Scribd’s Subscription Service Changing Unlimited Audiobooks Plan

Last November Scribd added audiobooks to their ebook subscription plan, which costs $8.99 per month to get unlimited access to Scribd’s library of several hundred thousand ebooks. Since then audiobooks have been apart of the unlimited monthly plan, but now that’s going to change. Starting September 20th, Scribd will be switching to an audiobook credit […]

Romania City Gives Free Bus Rides if You Read a Book


A Romanian city has just unveiled a new program to get people reading, free bus rides. If you live in Cluj-Napoca in north-western Romania you can ride public transit without paying anything, as long as you have a book with you.

The project was part of a series of events to celebrate Cluj-Napoca winning the title of European Youth Capital 2015. Other initiatives to celebrate the event and promote reading in the city included using the city's buses and trams to display inspiring quotes from classic and contemporary authors, giving out bookmarks to the general public and a weekly book club which ran throughout June in the Cluj-Napoca's botanical garden.

Scribd is Limiting the Number of Audiobooks you Can Listen to


Scribd has announced that they are making cuts to their audiobook system because they are losing money on this particular enterprise. Starting next month they are ditching their unlimited audiobook package and subscribers can only listen to a single title per month. If you want to listen to another audio edition, you have to pay an additional $8.99.

It is not all dire news for Scribd, the company has confirmed that they will offer “a rotating catalog of thousands of audiobooks for unlimited listening” which “are being made available through special arrangements with publishing partners”.

Scribd initially got into audiobooks back in 2014 when they ironed out an agreement with Findaway World to include over 30,000 titles. They expanded their network in April of 2015 with directly fetching audiobooks from major publishers.

This is not the first time Scribd has dialed back on a product category. Last month they got rid of almost 200,000 romance titles, because readers were devouring them at such a ravenous pace that Scribd was losing money.

Scribd is in a delicate position where they have balance a large content category full of comics, graphic novels, e-books and audiobooks and try and make money at the same time. This is something they have been successful at, unlike Entittle who tried to make a go out of it and went bankrupt.

It is not easy for a company to offer an unlimited amount of content and then impose limitations. There will obviously be some consumer backlash, but Scribd needed to do this to stay alive. They are the true alternative to Kindle Unlimited, and no one wants a world where everything is Amazon.