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Are conservative Christian theology and liberal politics compatible?
Monday, 21 April 2008
My publisher's retaliation: a big SALE
Mood:  incredulous
Topic: my books

Here is part of another e-mail from my publisher, announcing how it is fighting back against the Amazon:

 PublishAmerica is drastically reducing sales prices of all titles on its own website!
A few weeks ago we shared with you news about the pressure that many publishers were receiving from online vendor Amazon.com. As you know, PublishAmerica refused to budge. Today we can also report that this was not the first time that Amazon attempted to strong-arm PublishAmerica.
Roughly a year ago Amazon forced PublishAmerica to raise the pricing of our own books on our own website. They would not allow us to sell our almost 30,000 titles at sales prices lower than what Amazon chose to charge, and they threatened us with the very same retaliation that followed a year later after all. We complied at the time, and have been charging full list price in our own online store, because Amazon also charged full list price.
Staring down the bully: Now that Amazon has decided to punish PublishAmerica anyway for resisting further bullying, the time has come to reduce prices in our own online bookstore. And as an introductory step we will now slash our prices in half.  That's right: all book sales on PublishAmerica's website are at a 50 pct discount.
Go see for yourself at http://www.publishamerica.com/.
The introductory offer will expire April 28, when discounts will go back to approximately where they were before Amazon first attempted to dictate the nation's vending terms.

My book can be found on my publisher's website at Our Oneness in Christ (on PublishAmerica).

Posted by ian_j_site2 at 11:37 PM EDT
Another positive review for Our Oneness in Christ
Mood:  happy
Topic: my books

I recently became aware of another positive review of my book.  This one was authored by someone I had never heard of before, and someone to whom I had not submitted a copy of my book for review. 

This new positive review is on a "Book Reviews" blog (bookreviews07)on Blogspot.

A listing of the other reviews of my book (all positive) may be found at Our Oneness in Christ.


Posted by ian_j_site2 at 11:29 PM EDT
Publisher at war with Amazon; Book now available mainly through Barnes and Noble
Mood:  irritated
Topic: my books

According to a recent e-mail from my publisher, PublishAmerica, my book (Ian Johnson and Lauston Stephens, Our Oneness in Christ, ISBN 1424160359) is no longer available through Amazon.com due to a dispute between PublishAmerica and Amazon.  My publisher's e-mail stated:

 PublishAmerica is intensifying its ties with BarnesandNoble.com as its primary online vendor. At the same time, we are devaluating our relationship with Amazon.com. Unfortunately, we are doing this under pressure. Amazon has informed us a few days ago that they are insisting on printing every PublishAmerica book they sell, in their own recently bought in-house digital printing facility. We have been given just over two weeks to comply. Their ultimatum implies that PublishAmerica must submit almost 60,000 separate book files (text and cover), and redo every single one of them so they conform to the complicated technical specs that Amazon's in-house press requires.
They also demand a huge increase of their own profit-per-book, which would lead to dramatically lower royalty payments for our authors on all books sold through Amazon.com. Amazon's threat: if you do not play ball, we will disable the "Buy" button for your books.
Not surprisingly, PublishAmerica refuses to be swayed by anyone's strong-arming tactics, big name or otherwise, especially given the fact that budging would mean an additional expense on the publisher's side of tens of thousands of dollars, on top of the unacceptable royalty losses for our authors. When they tried to force our hand in the past, Amazon representatives have suggested that PublishAmerica should simply pass on its Amazon-caused expenses to its authors. Of course we have refused this. PublishAmerica never charges its authors as much as a single penny, ever. We are not going to change this winning policy under the threat of anyone's intimidation, nor are we willing to involuntarily accept any royalty cuts on behalf of our authors.
PublishAmerica's almost 30,000 titles remain available to Amazon, and we will continue to also make all future titles available to them. Amazon continues to be able to access our books the same way they, as well as all other retailers, have always accessed them, through at least four separate venues. One of those venues is LightningSource, a daughter company of the world's largest book wholesaler Ingram, which prints our books for retailers. (Amazon was attempting to take away a portion of this printing volume from Lightning Source until we prevented it.) If they want to obtain any PublishAmerica title, they can at all times, as they always have. PublishAmerica's books will furthermore continue to be available to just about every other book retail venue as well, including all Barnes and Noble, Borders, Waldenbooks, Books-a-Million and many other chain and independent bookstores, and to online outlets such as BarnesandNoble.com.
Barnes and Noble remains PublishAmerica's number one customer: more of our books have always been sold through Barnes and Noble and that company's online store than through any other vendor. Given the new circumstances, we now fully anticipate significant sales increases through BarnesandNoble.com and other places.

You may find my book on BarnesandNoble.com at:  Our Oneness in Christ

Posted by ian_j_site2 at 11:08 PM EDT
Updated: Monday, 21 April 2008 11:20 PM EDT
Wednesday, 16 April 2008
Supreme Court to decide my petition for certiorari
Mood:  incredulous
Topic: legal matters

The United States Supreme Court will decide whether to grant my pro se petition for a writ of certiorari in my bar application matter this Friday.  Either way it decides, the result will be positive.  If the decision is to grant the writ, it will mean that I have some possibility of actually using my law degree (conferred "with high honors" in 1982!) sometime during my lifetime.  If this happens, I will immediately be in the market for an attorney to brief and argue my case--and I will need to find that attorney very quickly.  On the other hand, if the Court denies the writ, I will be forever freed from the burden of trying to prove that I'm "good enough" to be a lawyer (or, viewed a little differently, that the Bar is "good enough" to accept me).

For those who are curious about the details of my case, or who may be interested in representing me if the writ is granted, details may be found on this web page (which includes my petition and a link to the Supreme court's docket for the case, among other things):  Ian Johnson bar admission status page



Posted by ian_j_site2 at 9:57 PM EDT
Updated: Wednesday, 16 April 2008 10:08 PM EDT

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