Grad School Weekly Wrap Up: Semester 2 Week 1

2/05/2015 05:27:00 pm

The semester started up in full swing this week and I am back to reality (and blogging!)

My courses this semester seem really interesting and so far I'm glad I chose them. Here's what I learned this week:

Digital Publishing Strategy 

The first week of class was mainly going over the course expectations and the history of technology in publishing. Yes, that even included the CD ROM books that caused a lot of companies to go completely bust... However, during the seminar portion of the class we were put into our groups for our big end of the semester project. Our lecturer then gave us some activities to help us get to know our group a bit better and to warm us up for a crazy semester. Some of the activities were silly (counting in a circle) and some were a little more difficult and challenging to my goldfish memory. However, the point of the activities wasn't just to break the ice, but to show us that sometimes, when you get confused or frustrated when you mess up a long chain of memorizing, it's okay to laugh. She wanted us to understand that sometimes, we have to step away, laugh about it, and then come back to it. That's a life lesson and it's one I really need to take to heart because I can be one tight wound bi-otch when it comes to coursework and sometimes I could really use a reminder that you've just got to laugh at the struggle sometimes.

Digital Media Publishing

Wow-za. This class has a lot of assignments. We're going to be creating HTML/CSS mark-ups of Shakespeare scenes, creating both reflowable and fixed text ebooks, and creating an interactive ebook. That is a lot of work and I am STOKED to finally learn how to create ebooks the legit way instead of the weird bootleg roundabout way I've been going about it for years. I swear my ebooks are tied together with rubberbands and string but maybe I've been on the right track this whole time and this semester will just help me take my jerry-rigged books to a new level. Prepare for re-vamped ebooks at the beginning of summer!

Rights Management

I switched into Rights Management at the last minute because I've been floating some really cool dissertation ideas around that involve author and publisher rights and I thought this course would be helpful. Admittedly, it's a bit of a snore but it was such an information packed snore of a class that I knew when I left the room I'd made the right choice by switching into the class.

Today we covered the basics of what rights are and why they're important. Here's the skinny:

The functions of rights:

  • sales
  • legal understanding
  • contracts
  • languages
  • attention to detail
  • negotiation
  • contacts (Publishing is all about people, after all)
  • planning
Types of Rights
  • Translations
  • Co-editions (when the publishing company is responsible for printing international editions)
  • Digital
  • Permissions
  • Territorial
  • Serial 
  • Other: merchandising, audio, film, TV, etc
Pretty cool stuff, huh? 

We also discussed the infamous monkey selfie, which I thought was a great way to lead off a semester long rights course. 

Anyway, I'm off to get some work done on my books (I should write a post soon about all the behind the scenes promo-y work I'm doing atm) and more dissertation research because this is my life. 

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