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Book News: Young Adult And Kids' Lit Boost E-Book Revenue

It's partly because of bookshelves like these — and their digital equivalents — that publishers have had a positive open to 2014.
It's partly because of bookshelves like these — and their digital equivalents — that publishers have had a positive open to 2014.

The daily lowdown on books, publishing, and the occasional author behaving badly.

E-book sales are standing on the shoulders not of giants, but of a much smaller set. According to new statistics released by the Association of American Publishers, the first seven months of 2014 showed marked growth in e-book revenue — largely thanks to young adult and children's literature.

The numbers, reported in The Bookseller, show that from January to July, e-book revenue grew 7.5 percent compared with the same period last year. It's a bump fueled mostly by a startling rise in revenue for YA and children's e-books — 59.5 percent growth — and a bit less so by e-books on religion, which also jumped 25.7 percent.

With print books included, the trade publishing industry saw modest growth — no thanks to adult and nonfiction books, which actually dropped 2.2 percent instead.

'Publishing While Black': "I feel like, with us, there's a sense that we're like these isolated nodes that have to somehow exist in competition with these larger groups and larger forces, but we're alone. So for me it was really important that I was constantly being reminded, even just as a reader, that there were people who were reading the same things I was reading and who were interested in the same kinds of voices and perspectives." — editor Chris Jackson in Scratch magazine, which brought together a roundtable of writers and editors of color for a deep dive into their experiences and frustrations in the publishing industry. The conversation has now been republished in full on The Toast.

Goosebumps Sandwich, On Twitter: Last night, R.L. Stine tried his hand at a live story on Twitter. The results, a 15-tweet horrificomedy called "What's in my Sandwich?" that unspooled in just over 5 minutes. The man behind the Goosebumps and Fear Street series has done this before. Head to R.L. Stine's handle for the story, or to The Huffington Post, where the story has been kindly arranged in order. But first, of course, what's a story without a little tease?

Over The Lines: Yes, there is a poetry brothel. Yes, it's legal. And yes, New Yorker poetry editor Paul Muldoon has, let's say, offered his services. (Reading poetry, of course.)

A Fateful Four-Letter Word: The word was "ain't," and its inclusion in Merriam-Webster's 1961 edition of the New International Dictionary, the Unabridged, set off a firestorm among word purists. Allen Metcalf tells the story of how the wreckage of one dictionary — at least, according to sticklers — made space for the growth of two of today's best-known dictionaries (including the book of choice for NPR's copy editors). "When a mighty storm fells a great tree in the forest, it creates a clearing open to the sunshine where seedlings can flourish," Metcalf says, with a flourish of his own.

W. On H.W.: Former President George W. Bush has a big media rollout — including an interview on NPR — planned for his biography of his father, which will be released on Veteran's Day this year.

Simon, Unsaid: Publishing legend Richard Simon — he of Simon & Schuster — apparently never published his own memoir. The manuscript, called "Fools Give You Reasons," is believed to have been written in the late 1950s, and is now going for a price of $5,000. Check out a sample page here.

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Colin Dwyer covers breaking news for NPR. He reports on a wide array of subjects — from politics in Latin America and the Middle East, to the latest developments in sports and scientific research.

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