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Writers' News

ICM Partners join forces with Curtis Brown Creative for writing course

thebookseller.com – Wednesday May 15, 2019

US agency ICM Partners and Curtis Brown Creative are teaming up to launch a six-month online novel-writing course. 

The course, which starts in September, will provide 15 writing students with the opportunity to connect with literary agents from the US and UK and the chance to glean knowledge and industry insights from US and UK publishing perspectives. 

ICM Partners have worked with Curtis Brown for more than 10 years on UK and translation rights representation and now ICM literary agents Heather Karpas and Zoe Sandler will take part in 'agent days' during the creative writing school's new course. 

[Read the full article]

Writing at risk of becoming an 'elitist' profession, report warns

theguardian.com – Tuesday May 7, 2019

Though the average writer earns £10,000 a year, mean household earnings are more than £81,000 – a result bestselling author Kit de Waal calls problematic.

Writing is in danger of becoming an elitist profession, with many authors being subsidised by their partners or a second job in order to stay afloat, according to new statistics.

The full findings from the annual Authors’ Licensing and Collecting Society report into author earnings paint a more nuanced picture than the headline results from last summer, which revealed that median earnings for professional writers had fallen to less than £10,500 a year. While the average professional writer earns £10,000 a year, the mean earnings for a writer’s household were more than £81,000 a year, and median household earnings were at £50,000 per annum. “Most writers supplement their income from other sources, such as a second job or household earnings contributed by a partner”, according to the report, which analysed answers from more than 5,500 professional writers.

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Buchwald Adds Five Agents In New York, Los Angeles Outposts

deadline.com – Monday May 6, 2019

The boutique agency Buchwald has expanded its New York and Los Angeles offices with five key hires made by president Julia Buchwald. In the New York office, Cassandra Tay and Katie Britton have been brought on as theatrical agents, as well as Liz Orr as a literary agent.

In Los Angeles, Jason Hyman joins as a talent agent, while George Carmona has been hired as Buchwald’s West Coast voice-over agent. In addition to building out the voice-over booth in Buchwald’s L.A. office, Carmona will work with a number of the agency’s east coast commercial agents including newly promoted Director of Animation, Pamela Goldman.

[Read the full article]

Creative writing graduates will 'never make a living as novelists', says Self

thebookseller.com – Thursday May 2, 2019

Will Self has declared literature to be “morphing into a giant quilting exercise”, suggesting that no current creative writing graduates will make a living from literary fiction.

The author criticised courses during an interview with Radio 4’s “Today” programme on Thursday (2nd May), in a show recorded at the University of East Anglia, almost 50 years since its prestigious Creative Writing MA launched.

Self said: “If you want to do it and you’re not too concerned about making a living in the future then it’s probably a good idea. The paradox is, in the modern university, everyone is encouraged to tailor their courses towards employability but it’s certainly not clear what the pathway is into literary fiction – possibly into genre fiction, or possibly people can use the writing courses just to develop themselves as writers to write video games or something else, that’s a possibility.”

[Read the full article]

Cengage, McGraw-Hill Agree to Merge to Become 2nd Biggest US Textbook Publisher

edsurge.com – Wednesday May 1, 2019

Cengage and McGraw-Hill Education plan to join forces in an all-stock merger. The news, first reported by The Wall Street Journal, would create the second-biggest U.S. textbook publisher if the deal is approved, with a combined valuation estimated at $5 billion. Pearson, with a market cap of $8.5 billion, would still be ahead of the pack.

[Read the full article]

Writers Who Fired Their Agents Aren’t Flocking To WGA-Approved Agencies

deadline.com – Tuesday April 16, 2019

Talent agencies that signed the WGA’s new Code of Conduct aren’t being flooded with calls from writers seeking new representation now that they’ve been ordered by the guild to fire their agents who refused to sign. Deadline reached out to many of the 48 agencies that signed the Code and asked if they’ve been getting calls from writers who fired their agents on this the first business day since the Code went into effect.

[Read the full article]

WGA & ATA Fail To Reach New Deal; Mass Firing Of Agents And Lawsuits Loom

deadline.com – Saturday April 13, 2019

The WGA and the Association of Talent Agents have failed to reach an agreement on a new franchise agreement, setting the stage for unprecedented upheaval in the film and TV industry. Thousands of writers now are ordered by the guild to fire their agents, and in the coming days, expect both sides to carry out their threats to sue each other.

The guild said this afternoon that “as of midnight tonight, every agency will be required to become a signatory” to its new Code of Conduct. Writers will have to fire any agency that refuses to sign it. (Read the letter from guild leaders to members below.) All of the major agencies have said they will not sign, so the unprecedented battle between writers and their agents soon will be on.

[Read the full article]

The first AI-generated textbook shows what robot writers are actually good at

theverge.com – Wednesday April 10, 2019

Academic publisher Springer Nature has unveiled what it claims is the first research book generated using machine learning.

The book, titled Lithium-Ion Batteries: A Machine-Generated Summary of Current Research, isn’t exactly a snappy read. Instead, as the name suggests, it’s a summary of peer-reviewed papers published on the topic in question. It includes quotations, hyperlinks to the work cited, and automatically generated references contents. It’s also available to download and read for free if you have any trouble getting to sleep at night.

[Read the full article]

Rick Christian leaves literary agency that transformed Christian publishing

religionnews.com – Friday March 15, 2019

As a San Diego high school student in the early 1970s, Rick Christian was frustrated when he heard radio commercials for best-sellers that ended with the words “available wherever books are sold.”

The books he wanted to read — Bibles, concordances and other Christian works — were hard to find in regular bookstores.

“I thought, ‘Someday I would love for Christian books to be available wherever books are sold,’” he said. In 1989, he set out to make that dream a reality as founder of Colorado Springs, Colo.-based Alive Literary Agency.

[Read the full article]

Stormzy launches search for 'best writer of a new generation'

theguardian.com – Thursday March 14, 2019

Less than a year after taking his first step into publishing with the launch of #Merky Books, the grime artist Stormzy has unveiled the New writers’ prize for authors under 30, to “promote the stories that aren’t being heard, and to find the best writer of a new generation”.

#Merky Books, a Penguin Random House imprint focused on fostering talent among young UK writers, is part of the musician’s growing #Merky empire, which also includes a record label and music festival. Its first book was Stormzy’s memoir, Rise Up, co-authored with the 25-year-old writer Jude Yawson.

[Read the full article]

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