Today in books and publishing: Figures keep climbing in Dunham deal speculation; Fifty Shades spoof targeted; McNally Robinson stores change hands; Amazon keeps adaptations in-house.
Lena Dunham's book is going for $3.6 million, people are saying. The book advance rumor mill has been churning out lots of big, big numbers lately! It was originally reported that Lena Dunham was attaching a $1 million price tag to her proposal for a book blending advice and personal essays tentatively titled Not That Kind of Girl. Now, Deadline is reporting that publishers are bidding $3.6 million for the book. As you know, faithful reader, we're highly skeptical of such unsourced, hyped-up reports about seven-figure book deals. They turn out to be wrong pretty regularly, and we suspect the numbers originate from the parties trying to sell the book rather than those trying to buy it. Being the director of a much-discussed HBO show and the sleeper hit film Tiny Furniture, Dunham stands to make a pretty penny for her book, of course. But we'd be wary at this point in the negotiating process. It could happen ... but will it? [Deadline]
Fifty Shades of copyright infringement. Many LOLs were had on the Internet when OR Books offered free copies of their parody book Fifty Shades of Louisa May to anyone willing to part with their copy of Fifty Shades of Grey. But the publisher of E.L. James' book, Random House, was not amused by the fictionalized erotic diary of Little Women author Louisa May Alcott, and they were especially peeved at the cover OR Books selected. Paul Bogaards, Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group executive director of publicity, says Random House sicced their lawyers on OR Books to stop them from publishing the rip-off jacket design. "The issue was not about the parody but the use of our cover art to help promote it," says Bogaards. Co-founder of OR Books John Oakes isn't intimidated, though. "I’m not sure you can publish a book parody without a pretty close link to the original’s cover: even when we made fun of poor Sarah Palin and her autobiography neither she nor Harper sent a lawyer to call," he tells GalleyCat's Dianna Dilworth. "We at OR will conduct a séance to check in with the shade of Louisa May Alcott (and her agent), but I doubt we shall bow to the forces of Midtown." [GalleyCat]