Thursday, April 7, 2011

The Children's Publishing Business...

It has been a big week in Children’s Publishing! 
First up Tools of Change Bologna followed by the Bologna  Children's Book Fair and then Spinning Tales....

Where, oh where, to begin.

I’ll go backwards.

Spinning Tales brought together over 115 Children’s writers and Illustrators from around the country to Auckland for the second National Conference of New Zealand Children’s Writers and Illustrators. This was a great learning and networking time for all of us. 

If you didn’t make it to the conference you must try to make the next one in two years time. The opportunity to spend time with others in the field is invaluable.  Learning from the speakers and the chance to talk with publishers is also worth gold. Each speaker was carefully selected to add value for the conference attender and any opportunities where you can sit down and pitch an idea to a an amazing plus.

The FaBo Team met for the first time. This was an historic occasion. We have been working together for a year on our online story and we finally met the whole team...except for Brian but we’ll forgive him being in Australia. Plans were made for FaBo 2. New members... new secrets to keep.

My personal take aways...The literary feast...and the art work it inspired. Gosh we have talented Illustrators who can draw and incorporate food in their drawing in new and innovative ways, not to mention the wonderfully entertaining stand up writers.

The wonderful, amazing, Katerina Mataira who challenged us all with her statement at the Kaumatua Panel. ‘I am nearly 80....I am publishing ebooks and selling my work online and on websites...If you have a niche, forget Traditional Publishers and do it yourself!’

And that is what Tools Of Change, Bologna was about. 
How can we continue to tell stories in today’s world? Read this excellent post by Bridget Strevans, an Illustrator, who attended TOC. It is an overview, a challenge and a guide to helping us navigate our way through the changes in publishing.

Bookman Beattie linked to the Bookseller overview of the Bologna Children's Book Fair. It is a must read as it quickly encapsulates the state of Publishing Worldwide right now. Vampires are sucked dry, Dystopian is still in and heading towards us...Time Travel is about to be HOT.
If you want to spend a little more time on getting a sense of Bologna, Nosy Crow has two excellent posts on Tools Of Change and the Book Fair. Well worth a read!

In the tips and tricks basket this week,
Mediabistro has linked to a great page on understanding Story Arc by Kurt Vonnegut. Kurt used these grids in his lectures to explain how a story should grab you emotionally.

The great Larry Brooks of Storyfix has a wonderful post on story architecture. How and when you should build in those plot points.

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

Making Money On Author Websites

Pitch Week with MG/YA Agent

Words Of Wisdom From Famous Authors

In the news this week is the speculation about the price of the eBook rights for Harry Potter. This is being negotiated  at the moment and reminds me of comments made by the publishers at Spinning Tales about eBook rights being non negotiable or deal breakers here in NZ. 
The margins are so slim here at the bottom of the world that eBook rights and world rights are the only way they can make money and if they don’t get both they may as well pass the project.... This is a good reminder to Writers and Illustrators...They are in a business and they need to know all the ramifications of the contract.


The pic is the golden moments of going to a Kid's Lit conference... Every encounter is gold....

The following video is 60 seconds of Bologna....


Sangu Mandanna said...

Some excellent news and links here, thanks, Maureen!

Maureen said...

Thanks Sangu,
Your blog is pretty cool too. I enjoyed reading it....and you are so right. Get off the internet and write....tee hee.

Melinda Szymanik said...

omg that video clip of Bologna - like one enormous 3d slushpile - yikes

Maureen said...

1300 exhibitors! Just thinking about getting around them all would be mind blowing! All that quality work!

No wonder you make appointments before hand... You couldn't afford to get distracted. Read Nosy Crow for what it's like on their end!

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