Thursday, January 29, 2015

Ranting On


This week I have been working hard on a funding application for our national conference to our national arts funder, Creative New Zealand.
When you work on a funding application, it gets you thinking about what you really really wish for and how limited the funds actually are out there in the arts world.
While I was finalising the last bit of number crunching our Man Booker winner Eleanor Catton was being interviewed live on Indian TV. She was voicing some of my thoughts about arts funding... we could do with more of it here. Unfortunately her comments annoyed a talkback radio host here and suddenly he was off on a rant calling her a traitor... to New Zealand. 
I found this very hard to swallow coming less than two weeks after the Paris attacks on free speech. Yes I disagreed with a lot of the religious attacks in the Charlie Hebdo comics but we live in a free speech democracy. The radio host has his right to free speech too. But can’t we be grown up and debate the issue of whether our arts funding is adequate. Of course, we in the arts community will say it isn’t. It would be nice to have the forum where we could show the rest of New Zealand exactly why we think it isn’t adequate and not be penalised for speaking our minds. We need to have a healthy forum for debate instead of having the whole thing reduced to competing soundbytes, as our NZ Society of Authors president Kyle Mewburn so ably said this morning on Breakfast TV.

The cartoonists have had a great time this morning illustrating the backlash.

Due to my week being spent crunching numbers... I haven’t got my usual 30ish links or so.
This morning Author Earnings released another report... and it makes interesting reading. Passive Guy highlights main points but a stunning revelation is the high percentage of books that don’t have ISBNs. These ‘shadow’ books aren’t counted in any official book statistics.

Jane Friedman comments on stats from DBW conference (which may be in doubt now that the new Author Earnings report is out) and she lists the best bits of Seth Godin’s session. This makes interesting reading for authors about where you should be aiming for in marketing.

The wonderful Kris Rusch was interviewed on her new book –Discoverability, This is all about passive marketing which authors need to understand. Worth taking the time to listen!

In the Craft Section,



In the Marketing section,

Daily Dahlia has a post on Agent red flags... with examples... must read if you are looking for one.

Jane Friedman on platform building for authors. This one is a must read/listen. I am always saying that groups of authors getting together to market themselves, and talk about writing, is the way forward. And here Jane is saying the same. Can’t argue with that!

To Finish,
One of my illustrator friends commented that she was sick of ignorant writers thinking that illustrators would illustrate their manuscripts for royalty splits when they hadn’t even got a publishing contract. Illustrators have to pay mortgages too. Picture Book illustrations can take up to a years full time work. Publishers pick the illustrators and most are paid flat fee and/or royalty. Please share this information around with your writing friends or you might encounter illustrators going off in Wendig inspired rants.

and on another note...
Terri Ponce has a nice little article on success and failure... worth printing and sticking above your writing desk  (especially this week...)

Maureen

P.S. When I have more details to share with you about the National Conference of Children’s Writers and Illustrators (A.K.A Tinderbox 2015 - Wellington October 2-5) I will share them.

(hugs self and chuckles gleefully)

pic from Todays New Zealand Herald

3 comments:

Vanessa Hatley-Owen said...

"When I have more details to share with you about the National Conference of Children’s Writers and Illustrators (A.K.A Tinderbox 2015 - Wellington October 2-5) I will share them." - squee! So exciting; can't wait!

Stephen Campbell said...

Thanks for the shoutout on the Kris Rusch interview! You're right - she is wonderful!

Yvette Carol said...

'Tinderbox' - even the name is inspired! You go, girl. Great post, as always, Maureen. :-)

p.s. If you want to know how to lose the 'captcha' thingie, just pm me and I'll let you know!

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