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Amazon signs big author

Publishing industry tries to adjust its collar, complains its getting kind of hot in here, dabs at its brow.

Self-help guru Timothy Ferriss has signed a deal to release his next book directly through Amazon.com. Ferriss's previous books "The 4-Hour Work Week" and "The 4-Hour Body" are best sellers, both published by Crown, a division of Random House. Amazon will publish "The 4-Hour Chef" next spring in hardcover, audio, and e-book form. Most telling part of the NYT write up of this: "Mr. Ferriss said he had approached Amazon about a book deal. Crown did not get a chance to match the offer because in the writer's view, it never could have."

Sounds like a total slam on Crown but it's the truth. Authors might typically get 15% of a book's sale but Amazon has been offering something more like 70%. That's easy math and it's making publishers very sweaty right now.

About the author

John Moe is the host of Marketplace Tech Report, where he provides an insightful overview of the latest tech news.
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Essentially, Ferriss is self publishing. That usually doesn't work unless the author is a known commodity.

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