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Posts Tagged ‘laura ingalls wilder

[BLOG] Some Tuesday links

  • Bad Astronomer Phil Plait notes that the measured rate of the expansion of the universe depends on the method used to track this rate, and that this is a problem.
  • On Sunday, Caitlin Kelly celebrated receiving her annual cheque from Canada’s Public Lending Program, which gives authors royalties based on how often their book has been borrowed in our public libraries.
  • In The Buzz, the Toronto Public Library identified five books in its collection particularly prone to be challenged by would-be censors.
  • D-Brief suggests that, if bacteria managed to survive and adapt in the Atacama desert as it became hostile to life, like life might have done the same on Mars.
  • Far Outliers notes the crushing defeat, and extensive looting of, the MOghul empire by the Persia of Nader Shah.
  • Hornet Stories looks at the medal hauls of out Olympic athletes this year in Pyeongchang.
  • Imageo notes satellite imagery indicating that fisheries occupy four times the footprint of agriculture. Aquaculture is starting to look like a necessary idea, I think.

  • At In Media Res, Russell Arben Fox praises Porch Fires, a new biography of Laura Ingalls Wilder by Caroline Fraser, for its insights on Wilder and on the moment of the settlement of the American West.
  • JSTOR Daily notes how, in the 19th century after the development of anesthesia, the ability to relieve people of pain was a political controversy. Shouldn’t it be felt, wasn’t it natural?
  • Language Hat links to an article taking a look behind the scenes at the Oxford English Dictionary. How does it work? What are its challenges?
  • At Lingua Franca, Roger Shuy distinguishes between different kinds of speech events and explains why they are so important in the context of bribery trials.
  • The LRB Blog shares some advice on ethics in statecraft from the 2nd century CE Chinese writer Liu An.
  • J. Hoberman at the NYR Daily reviews an exhibit of the work of Bauhaus artist Jozef Albers at the Guggenheim.
  • Roads and Kingdoms shares an anecdote of travellers drinking homemade wine in Montenegro.
  • Drew Rowsome interviews Native American drag queen and up-and-coming music star Vizin.
  • Starts With A Bang’s Ethan Siegel explains how star S0-2, orbiting so close to the black hole at the heart of the Milky Way Galaxy, will help prove Einsteinian relativity.
  • Vintage Space explains, for the record, how rockets can work in a vacuum. (This did baffle some people this time last century.)
  • Window on Eurasia suggests that, on its 100th anniversary, Estonia has succeeded in integrating most of its Russophones.

[LINK] “A Tiny Press Printed Only 15,000 Copies of Laura Ingalls Wilder’s Autobiography. Big Mistake.”

Slate‘s Laura Putre writes of the relatively enviable plight of the publishers of the new annotated autobiography of author Laura Ingalls Wilder: they didn’t print nearly enough copies.

In Laura Ingalls Wilder’s On the Banks of Plum Creek, Pa heads to town promising to return by nightfall, but a terrible storm blows through, and he finds himself trapped in a snow bank for three days. To survive, he eats the candy he brought for the girls’ Christmas stockings.

It’s a tale of pluck and miscalculation not lost on the publishers of Pioneer Girl, Wilder’s new annotated autobiography. Last November, they found themselves trapped in a snowbank of preorders for the book, which they won’t dig their way out of until March. They didn’t have to eat the Christmas peppermints, but they did leave Wilder fans crying in their homespun handkerchiefs when the book didn’t arrive in time for the holidays.

“Everyone keeps saying, ‘Where’s my copy, where’s my copy?’ ” says Sandra Hume, writer for the Beyond Little House blog and co-founder of the biennial “LauraPalooza,” a festival of all things Ingalls (which in previous years featured comedy of the Nellie Oleson actress from the TV series and a presentation by a meteorologist on the historical validity of Wilder’s The Long Winter).

Nancy Tystad Koupal, director of the South Dakota State Historical Society Press, the book’s publisher, said that Pioneer’s initial print run was 15,000. The books arrived at their warehouse the first week in November. By Thanksgiving, the press had not only exhausted that supply, but would take some 15,000 more orders. Coverage in a raft of publications, from The L.A. Times to the National Enquirer, sent demand through the sodhouse roof.* And that didn’t even count Amazon’s orders, which were around 30,000 and didn’t arrive until December. Those are the ones that won’t be filled until the third print run in March-ish.

Written by Randy McDonald

January 23, 2015 at 9:53 pm