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Beth Cox Report: June 2016

Dear Loyal Readers, Authors, and Publishers,

I'd like to start by sharing great link from a self-published author who succinctly walks readers through the process of writing and selling a book:

One of the most notable points is the emphasis on book marketing - one has to start early and work hard to get one's book promoted, and book reviews are a valuable part of that process!

In ebook news, Apple and five of the nation's largest publishing companies just lost an antitrust lawsuit alleging their participation in an ebook price-fixing scheme, as summarized in this online article:

Credits equal to twice purchasers' losses will automatically be sent directly to the accounts of customers of major ebook retailers, including Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, and Apple.

Since the lawsuit primarily concerned ebooks that were allegedly inflated in price to $12.99 or $14.99 over Amazon's usual $9.99 price, I hypothesize that its outcome will have little effect on smaller ebook authors, who tend to sell their novels for $2.99 to $4.99 or less.

I do wonder if there will be a concentrated downward pressure on the prices of academic ebooks, which sometimes are very close to their physical cover prices. We'll see.

June's Link of the Month is the remarkable online resource Google Translate.

I recently had an occasion where I had to look up information on a Japanese website, and I can't read Japanese. With Google Translate and a little copying and pasting, I learned everything I needed to know, all for free!

Language translation websites are imprecise, and cannot (yet) replace the work of a professional translator for anything publishable. But they are truly remarkable if you just need to know what something says right now; even if the website mangles the sentence structure, you can typically understand that gist of it.

Finally, June's Book of the Month chronicles the amazing history of a virtual currency that is changing the world - though whether that change is for good or ill depends on who you ask.

Virtual Billions
Eric Geissinger
Prometheus Books
59 John Glenn Drive, Amherst, NY 14228-2197
9781633881440, $25.00,

Virtual Billions: The Genius, the Drug Lord, and the Ivy League Twins Behind the Rise of Bitcoin discusses something many may know little about: the rise of digital currency, introduced in 2009, which is worth $14 billion today, less than a decade later. More than just a story about Bitcoin, it's a saga of the entire world of cyber currency and those who have crafted and advocated it, taking a round-the-world tour of personalities, processes, strategies, and more. Issues such as hacking services, counterfeit money, murder, and financial subterfuge are all covered in a lively text that requires no prior familiarity with banking, international currency, or computers in order to prove both accessible and enlightening.

That's all for the June 2016 Beth Cox Report. I hope you have a terrific July 4th!

Bethany Cox
Managing Editor
The Midwest Book Review

James A. Cox
Midwest Book Review
278 Orchard Drive
Oregon, WI 53575-1129
phone: 1-608-835-7937

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