Thursday, March 24, 2011

Going With Your Gut...


The speed of modern publishing varies. 

Recently I was trying to explain to my mother why I haven’t heard anything about my manuscript from a publisher. But they just don’t read it and say yes straightaway Mum. They have to consider whether it will make them any money. They have to get second opinions. Convince marketing, etc etc. Sometimes they take manuscripts out to bookshops and say read this, should we publish. Do you think it will sell?

And sometimes they hang onto manuscripts for a long time...None of my manuscripts have been less than 6 months sitting on an Editors desk. Bones spent a year being considered before I got a voice message saying they would take it.

I get accused of giving publishers too much leniency. I play fair by them as I expect they would play fair with me.

So yesterday when a prominent member of the Wellington Kidlit Community emailed me to tell me of a book that was conceived, written, illustrated, designed, published in print and ebook with a  dedicated website and youtube trailer in three weeks. It completely blew my mind.

The team involved have publishing cred. They have hit the market with a picture book that draws on the recent Christchurch earthquake experience. They decided to see if they could get this project out the door and available within a month of the event. And they succeeded. Everyone donated their time and skills. All proceeds to the Red Cross.

To do this they had to duck the Traditional Publishing way of submitting the project and waiting on decisions and they just went with their gut! They set up a publishing company and whammo. Curly from Shirley is out.

In the writing blogosphere the news in the last two days has been about the astonishing decision of Barry Eisler to reject a $500,000 Traditional publisher two book deal in favour of going it Indie. And Indie ebook phenomenon Amanda Hocking is taking part in a $1million deal for a trilogy with a Traditional publisher.

These two decisions have rocked the publishing world....

Booksquare compares the two decisions and comes out in favour of Eisler...much to their surprise. This is a superb overview on the Trad vs Indie debate.

The great Jane Friedman has a wonderful article summarising the main points of Eisler’s decision and referencing some very informed comment from Mike Shatzkin who called it an 'earthquake in publishing.' The comments following these blog posts are a must read. Commenter’s (and there are some big blog names in there) are posting information on numbers of page hits that equate with a big enough audience to sustain this decision. It is all fascinating and illuminating reading.

Agent Mary Kole takes a look at the decision from an agents point of view and discusses how agents are still relevant in the Indie world.

Over on Craicerplus (My Amplify Page) I have links to articles on

Screenwriting Tips For Novelists- because it is useful!

5 Ways To Strengthen Scenes- Brilliant advice I have been working hard on this all week.

Rolling Around in Text- this is for those who compulsively write in books...can you do it with ebooks...

Over Plotting and How To Tackle It...worried...read this!

To finish,
The wonderful Inkygirl fell foul of Warner Bros this week when her cool 4 Things You Should Never Ask A Writer Tee Shirt was pinged because it had a reference to the boy-who-must-not-be-named.
The printer pulled the tee shirt which is annoying because I want to get one right now...we have all had these questions!!!

Every now and again I check my Blog stats and fall faintly back in my chair as I see the amount of people who read my blog every week. Thanks Everyone. The following video is for T K Roxborogh and her students who have been frequent visitors lately. Something for all of us to enjoy....



3 comments:

Bri said...

I have been showing this clip to my student for the past three years. One: it's got the coolest sonnet by Shakespeare (130); it has Catherine Tate; it has Dr Who - um, I mean David Tennant. And, we all think that David Tennant will be the best person to play Donalbain

TK Roxborogh said...

Thanks Maureen. This is my favourite Youtube and Catherine Tate moment. One: it is Shakespeare presented very cooling - sonnet 130 is my favourite. It is David Tennant - not because of Dr Who but because he speaks his real voice. And, finally, we all think he would be a perfect Donalbain. He does manic really well.

Maureen said...

Hi Bri and Tania,
I am glad you liked it...I had a wonderful time choosing it for you...It has all those great things you mentioned plus the revenge on the annoying student factor...LOL

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