Thursday, July 3, 2014

For and Against

This week the publishing blogosphere has been watching the ‘dialogue’ between Hugh Howey and Mike Shatzkin about Hugh’s opinion piece, The State of Self Publishing. The Amazon Hachette saga seems to have been taken over by a morphing of The Traditional publishing route defenders and the Self / Indie publishing defenders. Each side sniping their opinions with increasing vitriol.
Hugh and Mike have important things to say on how both publishers and writers are finding the current publishing climate and I found myself nodding in agreement with both of them. Publishing is diverging. Porter endeavours to walk the middle line as he examines their arguments.

Passive Guy is known for his measured objective lawyer opinion on publishing. He was invited by the NY Public Library to be a self publishing representative on a high powered panel involving James Patterson and a bunch of lawyers on the state of publishing. Amazon: Business as usual? It does not sound like a happy experience but it was an illuminating one.

Val McDermid was recently interviewed by The Telegraph and she stated that if she was starting out now her career would be over. Her career took off after the fourth book. These days if your first book hasn’t taken off or you haven’t won awards... you are dropped.  This is a sobering interview worth reading. Hugh Howey commented today about it and implications for writers on the flipping of the publishing model that is becoming increasingly apparent.

For children’s writers it still seems that Traditional is still the top model at the moment as it is very print based. It will be interesting to see if this model changes in the next few years.

In the UK a bunch of publishers and editors were asked if publishing was still cool. Publishing Perspectives talks about their answers.

Joanna Penn interviews Bob Mayer on author mindset...great article. (transcript below the video)

Yvette Carol has written a nice blog post on how authors would like to get paid.

Writer Unboxed has an article on Author Attitude.

Killzone and Craft of Writing Guru, James Scott Bell has a fab post – Is it Plagiarism to steal a plot.

Why Self Publishers should go it alone together... this is taking the author collective model to the next step...

The wonderful Jennie Crusie on managing your writing time.

In the Craft Section,

Writing prompts – exercises

Roz Morris on writing to an outline.

K M Weiland on Character Reactions

In the Marketing Section,
Two great posts from Seeley James 5 Marketing tips and Display Ads marketing tips

Trim size (great article from Aussie kid lit author on POD publishing)

Jane Friedman on Author Taxes – this is US orientated but some good tips in there for everyone.

To Finish,
Brain Pickings recently celebrated seven years of providing brilliant internet content. One of their supporters decided to make their Seven Things I’ve Learned post into a great graphic poster. Check it out.

I will be away for a couple of weeks. So you can take your time reading through all the links in this big post. My predictions for the news while I am away ...  Amazon and Hachette will still be arguing and Self publishers and Trad publishers will still be at each others throats…For the writers it will be business as usual.

pic from Flickr/ Creative Commons/ abhi ryan 

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Acquisitions Arguments and Awards

This week around the publishing blogosphere...The news that Hachette has acquired the Perseus group is filtering through. Hachette is taking the publishing arm and on-selling the distribution arm to Ingram. Why should you care? Remember the predictions last year about publishers having to get bigger to survive? Hachette gets bigger. Ingram’s gets bigger and knocks out their major competitor along the way. This move has many implications for Indie publishers as Perseus was a main publisher of niche imprints and the main distributor of Indie Publishers. The move has fueled some speculation of what might be coming down the pipeline.... However it is a Sign That The Predictions Are Coming True.

Also in the wider news Amazon is flexing its muscles in the UK and Europe. Amazon is pressing for new terms with publishers some of which include that publishers cannot undersell Amazon even on their own websites and that Amazon is to provide a POD book for every print title currently out of print. There is a nice little phrase, (Most Favoured Nation) being bandied about.

The Carnegie Medal has been awarded. It is one of the top prizes in Children’s Literature... and not everyone is pleased. The book is a Young Adult novel for starters...and it just goes down from there. Kiwi Kids Lit authors will be familiar with this scenario as we watched it unfold last year after our own National Awards.

This years New Zealand Post Children’s Book Awards was another celebration of the depth and breadth of children’s writing in this country. The winners were hard to pick from the stellar finalists in each category. Children’s Literature won on the night...with New Zealand Post finishing its 18 year sponsorship in style. Everyone hopes we find another sponsor just as dedicated to celebrating our Children’s Literature awards as NZ Post. (crossed fingers)

In the Craft Section,

Get Back To Basics –Janice Hardy

In the Marketing Section,
The best TED talks on Marketing...This is a great collection and worth bookmarking.

Public speaking for introverts.(video from Joanna Penn)

Creating a Business Philosophy -Elisabeth S Craig

To Finish,
Writers are bibliophiles. Huffington Post has a collection of things YA Readers say about reading but really these could all come out of writers mouths.


pic: The Margaret Mahy Book Of The Year 2014 awarded this week to Vasant Unka. (Penguin NZ)

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