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Writers' News

Paranormal and romance- a shared magic by Tracey Shearer, author of Raven

femalefirst.co.uk – Tuesday November 17, 2020

Two years ago, when my literary agent had to suddenly retire to take care of her ailing hubby, I prepared to pitch to new agents at a local writers’ conference. Before I could join the pitch session, an agent buddy pulled me aside and told me not to tell anyone my book was a Paranormal Romance. Call it anything else, but not that.

We stood in a quiet hallway at the conference while I tried to process what she’d just shared. Then she leaned in close and whispered, “Tracey, Paranormal Romance is dead.”

I couldn’t hold back my disbelief, mouth dropping open, eyes blinking, seeing nothing. Paranormal Romance dead? How could that be when I see bookshelves, both physical and virtual, filled with books in this genre? Readers are hungry for these stories.

The agent went on to share that the Big 5 publishers weren’t actively acquiring Paranormal Romance. They had too much already on their author roster. So agents were steering clear of anything with even a whiff of Paranormal Romance. It would be a hard “no.”

I believed my friend, I truly did. But in my heart, I knew that nothing would ever kill this genre.

[Read the full article]

New Magazine Listing: The Scribbler

firstwriter.com – Tuesday November 17, 2020

Each issue contains reviews of much-loved and less well-known fiction for women and children, and a short story.

[See the full listing]

New Literary Agent Listing: Jodie Hodges

firstwriter.com – Tuesday November 17, 2020

"I enjoy strong, original storytelling and a unique voice. I have a passion for funny writing for 7-12s and also a penchant for the realisms of teenage life - be that gritty or hilarious - in writing for that age group. That said, I also love classic, epic adventure stories and a sprinkling of the fantastic."

"Additionally, I'm always searching for children's book illustrators or writer/illustrators with a contemporary, quirky style. A kind word of advice, though, please ensure your portfolio is ready for children's books. Make sure you're showing the best of yourself by showcasing the sort of illustration found in children's picture books in the UK."

Submit by email to the agent's assistant.

[See the full listing]

UK book sales down 11% for first half

booksandpublishing.com.au – Monday November 16, 2020

In the UK, stats from the Publishers Association (PA) show that total book sales across the industry fell 11% in the first six months of the year, reports the Bookseller.

According to the PA, the total invoiced value of sales from UK publishers in all formats (including exports) was £1.5 billion (A$2.72b), down from £1.7 billion (A$3.1b) in the first half of 2019. Total sales for the UK market alone were down 6% to £837 million (A$1.51b), while exports fell 17% to £653 million (A$1.18b).

A big increase in fiction titles (up 13%), and a surge in sales of ebooks (up 26%) and audiobooks (up 47%), were outweighed by a 17% drop in print books, led by steep falls in the educational and professional sector.

[Read the full article]

Pandemic drives ebook and audiobook sales by UK publishers to all-time high

theguardian.com – Saturday November 14, 2020

Sales of digital books by British publishers are set to hit an all-time high this year as the public turns to reading to escape pandemic cabin fever.

However, the ebook and audiobook boom comes at a high cost for the industry, with global sales of printed books by UK publishers plunging by 55m in the first six months of the year as high streets and schools closed during the first coronavirus lockdown.

The pandemic has revived the fortunes of the consumer ebook. The format once touted as the future of reading has suffered six straight years of sales declines since peaking in 2014 but this year has been different, with sales home and abroad up 17% to £144m in the first half. UK publishers can now expect consumer ebooks to enjoy their best year since 2015, when sales were just under £300m.

[Read the full article]

New Agent Listing: Chelsey Heller

firstwriter.com – Friday November 13, 2020

Seeking nonfiction across all categories, especially self-help, memoir, narrative nonfiction, pop culture, history, big ideas, popular science, and cookbooks. She is particularly drawn to fresh narratives, whether in the form of history explored through a new lens, an innovative concept that stokes self-improvement, or an electric voice in memoir.

[See the full listing]

Alumna launches magazine as ‘safe space’ for writers

temple-news.com – Thursday November 12, 2020

After losing her fiancé to suicide, Jenna Faccenda began wrestling with her life’s purpose.

“Those deep thoughts and how my footprint on this Earth could really be impactful toward someone else,” Faccenda said. 

Amid her grief, Faccenda, a 2017 journalism alumna, turned back to her love of writing and ventured to create a community for other artists experiencing trauma. She launched Eclipse Lit, a literature magazine for writers to discuss trauma and heal through their artwork. 

With writer submissions open from Oct. 1 through Nov. 15, Faccenda intends to publish her first edition, a collection of short stories, essays and multimedia art from artists around Philadelphia, in March 2021.

[Read the full article]

Midwest Writers Workshop goes virtual

kpcnews.com – Thursday November 12, 2020

This year Midwest Writers Workshop Inc. has designed an online version of MWW Agent Fest, Wednesday to Saturday, Nov. 18-21. The conference offers opportunities for fiction and nonfiction writers to pitch to literary agents, learn about the business of writing and publishing, network and enjoy the writing community that makes MWW so special.

Here’s a chance for writers to pitch their book ideas directly to literary agents in search of new voices. Writers can connect with literary agents who are actively searching for the next big thing across all genres including fiction, nonfiction, young adult and more. During the Agent Fest Online 2020, writers have an opportunity to meet agents one-on-one via Zoom and capture their attention with the basic concept of their book.

[Read the full article]

New Agent Listing: Chloe Davis

firstwriter.com – Wednesday November 11, 2020

Particularly enjoys reading submissions, especially middle grade adventures and contemporary YA love stories.

[See the full listing]

Myth and folklore the pick of festive trends in children's

thebookseller.com – Monday November 9, 2020

Children’s books about Christmas, mythology and adventures are among the top titles available from small independent publishers this autumn.

Despite lockdown and an uncertain retail market, many of the smaller children’s publishers are hoping for a boost in sales with their festive titles, which include The Girl Who Stole the Stars by Corrina Campbell, published by Little Door Book, and Leah’s Star by Margaret Bateson Hill (Alanna Max), which tells the nativity story from the point of view of the innkeeper’s daughter. The Salariya Book Company has two Christmas-themed books out this autumn: Little Bear and the Silver Star by Jane Hissey, and Billy and the Balloons by Elizabeth Dale and Patrick Corrigan.

[Read the full article]

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