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Authors United Merges with Authors Guild

Authors United is merging with the Authors Guild to bolster its fight for author and press freedoms, which the group sees as being “under attack” by the new U.S. administration under Donald Trump, The Bookseller reported.

Authors United was originally created in 2014 to stand up against Amazon on behalf of authors during the online retailer’s dispute with Hachette Book Group. In a letter, the founder of Authors United, author Douglas Preston, told members that the Guild will continue the work of Authors United on behalf of writers, stating, “The guild is extremely concerned about potential high-level appointments in areas that affect writers: copyright, anti-trust, libel law, and freedom of the press.”

The Authors Guild employs a professional lobbyist in Washington, who, with Guild staff, is fighting for legislative proposals that will curb online piracy and prevent expansion of libel laws. In addition to working to improve authors’ contracts, the guild is lobbying to make sure copyright laws remain strong.

First Book and Penguin Random House to Give 550,000 Books to Kids This Holiday Season

First Book and Penguin Random House have partnered during the 2016 holiday season to provide up to 550,000 brand-new books to children.

Through December 31, every $3 donated online or sent to First Book, a nonprofit that gives books to children in need, will be matched with an in-kind donation of two books from Penguin Random House, totaling up to 500,000 books. In addition, through the third annual Penguin Random House #GiveaBook campaign, readers will have the power to donate an additional 50,000 books to their local communities through First Book.

Ingram Content Group Announces New Associates

Ingram Content Group has announced one promotion and the addition of three new associates to the company.

Roger Lee has joined Ingram as vice president of credit for Ingram Content Group, where he will oversee global credit operations. Lee succeeds Rob Montgomery, who will be retiring after the end of the year. Prior to coming to Ingram, Lee served in various roles with Baker & Taylor, Caleres/Brown Shoe Company, Perry Ellis International, and Rexall Sundown.

Bonnie Dailey has been named client implementation manager for Ingram Publisher Services and will manage the day-to-day operational relationships with Third-Party Logistics (3PL) clients. She previously held several postions at Geodis Contract Logistics, most recently as senior implementation analyst and quality supervisor.

Bunmi Western has joined Ingram Publisher Services as sales and marketing director in the London office. Most recently, Western held leadership positions with Atlantic Books, where she served as part of the executive team and on the board of directors.

Amanda Aleksey has been promoted to a newly created position of manager of client relations for Ingram Publisher Services’ International Customers, where she will serve as the liaison between client publishers and the international sales team. Aleksey came to Ingram from Penguin Random House in 2015.

Elizabeth Scarpelli Named Director of University of Cincinnati Press

The University of Cincinnati Libraries has chosen Elizabeth Scarpelli to be the director of the new University of Cincinnati Press.

Beginning January 9, Scarpelli will provide oversight of all functions of the academic press as well as build a regional, national, and international reputation for the press. Scarpelli has more than 25 years of experience working in publishing and comes to the university from Baker & Taylor and Bookmasters, where she served as the director of publisher services.

The operations of the press, which will be located in and supported by the University of Cincinnati Libraries, will focus on two programs: peer-reviewed scholarly works in social justice and a community engagement imprint featuring the history of Cincinnati and its university. The press will also explore new models for digital media, as well as web-based interactive digital scholarship, multi-authored databases, and library special collections and archives.

PEN America Literary Awards Releasing 2017 Longlists This Week

This week, PEN America is announcing the longlists for the 2017 PEN America Literary Awards.

Each day from December 5 through December 9, PEN is releasing the longlists for one to two book prize genres both on the PEN website and on social media, as well as on Mashable.

On December 5, the longlists for debut fiction and science writing were announced. The PEN Open Book Award and sports writing longlists were announced on December 6, and the essay and biography longlists were announced on December 7. Longlists for prose and poetry in translation will be announced on December 8, followed by the nonfiction longlists on December 9.

Finalists for all awards will be revealed on January 18, and most winners will be announced February 22. All winners will be honored at the 2017 PEN America Literary Awards Ceremony at The New School in New York City on March 27.

National Book Critics Circle John Leonard Prize Finalists Announced

Finalists for the 2016 National Book Critics Circle John Leonard Prize, which honors a debut book in any genre, have been announced.

They are:

  • The Mothers by Brit Bennett (Riverhead)
  • The Girls by Emma Cline (Random House)
  • Here Comes the Sun by Nicole Dennis-Benn (Liveright)
  • Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi (Knopf)
  • The Nix by Nathan Hill (Knopf)
  • Grief Is the Thing with Feathers by Max Porter (Graywolf)

The award will be presented at the NBCC Awards Ceremony at The New School in New York on March 16.

Five Audiobooks Garner Grammy Nominations

Nominations for the 59th Grammy Awards were announced on December 6, including five books in the spoken word category.

The nominees for Best Spoken Word Album (which includes poetry, audiobooks, and storytelling) are:

  • The Girl With the Lower Back Tattoo by Amy Schumer (Simon & Schuster Audio)
  • In Such Good Company: Eleven Years of Laughter, Mayhem, and Fun in the Sandbox by Carol Burnett (Random House Audio)
  • M Train by Patti Smith (Random House Audio)
  • Under the Big Black Sun: A Personal History of L.A. Punk by John Doe with Tom Desavia (Random House Audio)
  • Unfaithful Music & Disappearing Ink by Elvis Costello (Penguin Audio)

The 59th annual Grammys will air live from the Staples Center in Los Angeles on February 12 at 8:00 p.m. ET. on CBS.

Submissions for 2017 Grateful American Book Prize Open January 1

On January 1, The Grateful American Book Prize will begin accepting submissions for its 2017 award for works published between July 1, 2016, and July 31, 2017.

The annual prize is given to authors for outstanding works of fiction and nonfiction. Works must be based on historical fact and written to inspire 11- to 15-year-old students. The Grateful American Book Prize comes with a $13,000 cash award in commemoration of the 13 original colonies.

Submission forms for the prize can be found on the prize website