The Weekend Gossip Rag

Our Dog Blog Secretary has been busily sniffing out the week's gossip for our weekend report.  With no further ado....

Actor and comedian B.J. Novak, he of The Office fame, signed a seven-figure book deal with publisher Alfred K. Knopf on Thursday.  In return for all that cold, hard cash, Novak will produce two books, at least one a work of fiction to be released in 2014.


Ever dream of owning an original poem written in 1829 by Charlotte Bronte herself?  If you could have outbid $140,000 it could have been yours this past Wednesday when it was auctioned off at Bonhams.  On a mere three inch square piece of paper, Bronte etched out the following poem:

I've been wandering in the greenwoods
And mid flowery smiling plains
I've been listening to the dark floods
To the thrushes thrilling strains.

I have gathered the pale primrose
And the purple violet sweet
I've been where the Asphodel grows
And where lives the red deer fleet.

I've been to the distant mountain
To the silver singing rill
By the crystal murmering fountain,
And the shady verdant hill.

I've been where the poplar is spinging
From the fair inamelled ground
Where the nightingale is singing
With a solemn plaintive sound.


Facebook, as it turns out, can be an author's best publicity tool or worst nightmare, depending on their professionalism.  One well  somewhat-known historical fiction author, however, used the social media platform this week to take a good swipe at readers who review books on Amazon:

Somewhat-known Historical Fiction Author:  "I think their new policy is a step in the right direction, it'll keep the freebie grabbers away. And a good percentage of those people are the ones who trash books because they're part of a reviewer clique that delights in taunting authors with bad reviews in the hope that the author will then react on site, by commenting back."

Another Somewhat-known Historical Fiction Author: "There are a couple of those. Vine would do well to insist that the reviewers use their real names, instead of hiding behind avatars and fake names."

Original Somewhat-known Historical Fiction Author: "Right, I agree. Miss Kitty needs to be declawed."

Le sigh.  Why, oh why, is it always the peripheral, never-made-it-to-the-best-seller-lists authors that are so bitter and sensitive about their reviews?  Oh, nevermind, that's's because they are not professionals.  Just a random observation.  And who the hell is Miss Kitty?  Again, nevermind, we don't really care.  Pfft.


A teenage girl in Wales who has been writing and posting stories online at Wattpad (a very cool site, by the way) was noticed by Random House.  Beth Reekles was then offered a three-book deal by the publishing cool is that?

Got anymore newsworthy stuff?  (And no, this year A Reader's Respite does not consider the Audie Award nominees to be newsworthy....more on that later.  Bah.)



  1. I love your new secretary, even though he appears to be way younger than your previous blog secretary, which leads me to conclude you might have "cougar" tendencies (in which case you might want to consider a cougar for your next blog secretary).

    Yes, it is TOTALLY AMAZING how sensitive some authors are! And scary sometimes, even. On the other hand, it could be that "famous" authors aren't as sensitive because they don't bother reading reviews, especially not from bloggers, because they are too busy blurbing other books and so on...

  2. Ooooh, you are sharp on the uptake And yes, you are right. Successful authors are too busy actually writing novels to give a rat's butt about their reviews. Oh and blurbing. Ha.

  3. I want your blog secretary to come work for me! Of course, I'm sure I'd be working for him if he were here.

  4. I'm not sure I have anything juicy to add. I can say that I had drinks and BBQ with a bunch of authors last night and they didn't seem to be all that worried about the haters. Many of them even refuse to look at Amazon. And that Peter Geye (Safe From the Sea, The Lighthouse Road) is one of the funniest and coolest guys I've met in a long time. Not at all what I expected.

  5. I am hoping this means the previous blog secretary is now free for the taking. You can keep the cute puppy -- I'm going for the guy. LOL

  6. What a heartening experiencing. Restoring my faith in authors....

  7. Given his potty proclivities, yes, you'd be working for him. Egads.

  8. Yes, he is all yours, provided you can find him. Last I heard, he was communing with nature in Tibet. Definitely not making movies these days....bah.


Fire away!