My fellow authors are too busy chasing prizes to write about what matters
theguardian.com – Wednesday August 16, 2017
There are at least two reasons why almost every anglophone novelist feels compelled to get as near the Booker prize as they can. The first is because it looms over them and follows them around in the way Guy de Maupassant said the Eiffel Tower follows you everywhere when you’re in Paris. “To escape the Eiffel Tower,” Maupassant suggested, “you have to go inside it.” Similarly, the main reason for a novelist wanting to win the Booker prize is to no longer be under any obligation to win it, and to be able to get on with their job: writing, and thinking about writing.
The 4 Great Myths of Book Publishing
huffingtonpost.com – Tuesday August 8, 2017
Signing a contract with even a brand-name traditional book publisher initially feels like a ticket to Nirvana. You may expect, for example, your new publisher to set you up with a big fat advance, a multi-city promotional tour, your very own personal PR rep and multiple copies of your book on every bookshelf in the nation (and Canada) for as long as you and your book shall live.
But to understand how book publishers really work, study this list of what I call the four great “myths” of traditional book publishing. Then, by all means, proceed to seek out a publisher if that’s your goal but do so with your eyes wide open. Your relationship with your publisher will run much smoother if you recognize its pitfalls as well as its glories.
Writing in Someone Else’s World
theatlantic.com – Monday August 7, 2017
My first book was not what I dreamed it would be. I started writing professionally when I was in my late 20s, and while I worked my way up from a freelance music journalist to being an editor at The A.V. Club, the non-satirical wing of The Onion, I had one goal: to use all that experience as a springboard toward becoming an author. I had it all mapped out: After years of sacrifice and honing my craft, I would make my triumphant debut, with a book that might not become a bestseller but that’d be respected for its stunning originality and insight into the human condition.
Instead, my first book was The Captain Jack Sparrow Handbook. Yes, that Captain Jack Sparrow. As played by Johnny Depp. From The Pirates of the Caribbean movies. Based not on an ancient myth or literary archetype, but on a Disney ride. Writing a media tie-in, as works officially attached to other properties are known, wasn’t the start I had in mind. But as many professional authors will attest, the path to publication is rarely the expected one. And my experience writing about the famed Disney pirate—as well as my second media tie-in, a project for the Goosebumps movie—made me think twice about my preconceptions about work-for-hire books. Not to mention those who make them.
Professional romance novelists can write 3,000 words a day. Here’s how they do it
qz.com – Friday August 4, 2017
Writing is not a sexy business. It’s not a rare butterfly that floats down and gently kisses you on the nose with a brilliant idea that conjures a hurricane of cash. It’s frustrating, and it’s lonely, and for most people, it doesn’t pay.
But one genre consistently makes it work. Romance writers who are able to get published or sell their books through self-publishing are true hustlers. The women who succeed here are not just writers, they’re business people, and they spend hours keeping up with fans online and doing their own marketing, in addition to writing.
20 Podcasts About Writing That Will Have You Penning A Bestselling Novel In No Time
bustle.com – Wednesday August 2, 2017
Writers get their inspiration from all sorts of places — real life, current events, favorite books, other writers, their own imagination, and more recently: podcasts. Podcasts about writing have been around practically as long as podcasts themselves have been, (with the longest-running writing podcast on this list airing for the first time in 2005!) and they’re the perfect dose of advice, inspiration, and motivation — especially for working writers on the go. Because let’s face it: while most of us aspiring and/or working writers would love to pause our daily lives in favor of losing ourselves in a writers’ workshop for weeks, months, or even years at a time, for many writers that’s not so realistic. These podcasts — as helpful as a creative writing workshop itself, in many ways — might be the next best thing. (With the added bonus of not having to worry about your GPA and your muse showing up in a timely manner.)
Yes Virginia, There are Publishers Who Don’t Require Agent
authorlink.com – Tuesday August 1, 2017
In 1897, eight-year-old Virginia O’Hanion asked her father if there really was a Santa Claus. Not quite knowing how to answer, her dad suggested she write a letter and ask The New York Sun. This prompted the most reprinted editorial in all English-speaking newspapers to this date: Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus.
Today, as writers, we often ask the same question over and over, thinking like Virginia O’Hanion, that we possibly we know the truth but aren’t quite sure. Only our question is if there are any big publishing houses that take books directly from authors or if an agent must always connect the deal. For years we’ve been told there is no such animal, but then every once and awhile, we hear of an author who made a deal alone.
Publishers who want new readers must challenge their genre boundaries
thebookseller.com – Tuesday August 1, 2017
By now you’ll most likely have heard of The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead.
The American writer's alternate history novel is less a subterranean secret, more a juggernaught of buzz that’s currently crossing genre borderlines with the speed of a runaway express.
Winner of the Pulitzer and the National Book Award, Booker long-listed, lauded by Oprah and feted as “fantastic” by Barack Obama (the last book he read in the White House, and thus allegedly the last book read by a US President to date), The Underground Railroad has just added the 2017 Arthur C. Clarke Award for science fiction literature to its roster of accolades.
5 Writing Tips From Stephen King's Twitter To Help You Pen Your Bestselling Novel
bustle.com – Tuesday July 25, 2017
It's always helpful for aspiring writers to get advice from their heroes, so whenever Stephen King shares writing advice online, everyone takes notice. And Stephen King's latest piece of advice is so short and simple it will have writers across the world scrambling for a pen to make edits to their latest manuscript, and remove Stephen King's least favorite phrase. According to a tweet recently posted by King, writers should never use the phrase "for a long moment."
Is the ebook a dead format?
thebookseller.com – Monday July 24, 2017
Nowadays, the ebook has a reputation for technological conservatism - so it is easy to forget that there was significant anticipation for the Kindle’s arrival ten years ago.
In a 2009 editorial, The Bookseller declared the device was “a giant leap for all”. The Kindle was frequently compared to the iPod’s transformative effect on the music industry. No wonder - the ebook format promised several advantages. Users could adjust typographic settings for improved accessibility; there was an increased level of portability; and the move to digital distribution promised the ability to purchase publishers’ extensive back catalogues.
But despite the early promise of the ebook, many are questioning whether it has lived up to these expectations. In recent years, the ebook has faced significant backlash amid reports of declining sales in trade publishing. The Publishing Association Yearbook 2016 noted a 17% slump in the sale of consumer ebooks while physical book revenue increased by 8%. Over the last couple of years, audiobooks have replaced ebooks as digital publishing’s critical darling on the back of a rapid increase in revenue. In this climate, several commentators have asked “how ebooks lost their shine.”
What Does A Book Editor Do? Macmillan's Rhoda Belleza Has Some Insight On The Covetable Job
bustle.com – Thursday July 20, 2017
If you're anything like me, you're a readers who is super interested in book publishing, and what goes on behind the scenes of your favorite books. The books we hold in our hands have all had massive journeys — from the author sitting at their computers or notebooks banging out the words, to you holding that brand new crisp hardback in your hands.
There are literary agents and book packagers and so many more people who get a book from A to Z. But one of the most well known of these people is probably the book editor. These are the people who help take an author's work from good to great — the people who get it ready to hit the shelves (and, hopefully, the bestseller list.) But, whether you're just interested in learning more about the industry or you actually want to break in yourself, you might find yourself wondering what, exactly, a book editor's day to day looks like.