The Gate Keepers jobs are changing.
The big news in the writing blogosphere this week is Agents Becoming Publishers. From a few testing out the brave new world of ebook publishing (see a previous blog post of mine) a couple of months ago, this week more agents are jumping into the publishing water.
What does this mean for writers?
Unscrupulous agents can take their 15% as agent and pass you on to their publishing arm which may take 50% as the publisher. A few agents are renting their services out for flat fees. A writer must weigh up very carefully the pros and cons of traditional agent services and ‘new’ agent services....
Anne R Allen has written an excellent blog post looking at the new moves from the agents and weighing up the advantages for the writer. Writer Beware has a blog post examining the ethical issues surrounding the ‘new agency’ model. Elisabeth S Craig has a good post on why she is still keeping her agent under the traditional model.
If you are in the market for an agent or thinking it may be a good idea in the future, read these and be aware of how agencies are changing in this brave new world.
Another big move this week was the launch of Pottermore, JK Rowling’s new website, ebook publisher, storefront and fan club all rolled into one site. Phyllis Miller comments upon the changes that the launch of Pottermore might have on the ebook marketplace...especially the ditching of DRM (Digital Rights Management) on the Potter ebooks. Publishers Weekly is taking a ho hum approach while commenting on how rare it is that a writer still has ebook rights...
If you have a successful brand, and J K Rowling does, why not look at what merchandising opportunities you can get out of it. You are a business after all. You have created the characters and the world etc etc...a range of clothing, mugs and stationary can be sold exclusively from your website. One of my favourite authors Jasper Fforde (NYT describes him as Harry Potter for grown ups) is doing it and if it is Ok for an Adult Writer to do it...surely a Children’s Writer can do it.
Joe Konrath has a great post on how to make your ebooks another storefront for your work. Put the blurb on the front cover...such simple advice.... Anne Allen has a post on the new trend of using ebooks as queries, and the reverse, Agents looking to rep successful ebook writers...sticky sticky.
In the craft corner,
The League Of Extraordinary Writers has a great post on Dystopian Rites of Passage.
Bob Mayer has taken a good look at great plot. You must get Primal!
Over on Craicerplus (My Amplify Page) I have links to articles on
5 Things More Important Than Talent- this is a great post...lots of comment on this.
Ten Terrifying Questions For Authors...how do the great and the good do it?
The Art Of Being Different-Justine Musk. Justine writes a wonderful blog and this article is a great self affirming read...because all of us writers are quirky and interesting, aren’t we?
I was having an email chat with Dylan Owen of The National Library of New Zealand (Children’s Collection) about being on a panel addressing the topic of whether storytelling was dead.(upcoming AGM of WCBA)
In the conversation I referred to a problem I have been mulling over lately, the fact that traditional gate keepers seem to be reluctant to get involved in children’s ebook reviewing. Dylan was able to give me some hot off the press news. School Library Journal has started a new review blog looking at apps for children and Dylan was about to extend the School Library Service, Create Readers blog that reviews books to include ebooks...
So the Gate Keepers have some new hats to try on and some new shiny keys to play with...
pic The gates of Graceland.