Thursday, July 20, 2023

Getting Caught In The Rush To Publish


In Publishing News this week…

The news of the layoffs at Penguin Random House have hit the industry hard. It seems no one is safe, with Pulitzer Prize winning editors suddenly finding themselves without a job.

PRH is not the only house laying off… Publishers Weekly report key editors at other publications are also being shown the exit door.


The Guardian recently wrote about the mental health crisis of new writers not being supported by the publishing industry, but the very people who are supposed to be doing the supporting are on shaky ground themselves. They are trying to hang on to their jobs. And what about the people who haven’t been laid off? They get to do double the work – I bet they won’t get double the pay.


In the AI section, the Writers Guild of the UK has released a policy statement on how they see AI impacting writers. The AI tools are out there but they are only as good as the data set they are trained on. This is where another big campaign is being waged as thousands of authors urge the AI companies to stop using their work to train AI’s without permission. 

AI is out of the box. The best thing writers can do is work out how to use it and protect their creative process. I recently listened to Orna Ross and Joanna Penn discussing this and I recommend their podcast on the topic.


I seem to be writing about a court case every week. This week it's Amazon taking issue with the EU calling them a Very Large Online Platform. They think they are not. At issue is the new strict rules on transparency, content moderation and risk management. Amazon recently upset their advertisers with the new rule change based around this. Account owners will be identified as the advertiser in any ad they run on Amazon. This has Authors in a bind as they can’t hide behind a pseudonym and be an advertiser. 


TikTok’s publishing arm is starting to approach authors directly about signing up on their platform. One author relates what they are offering and it doesn’t look like a good deal. 


Anne R Allen has an excellent post on learning to be a writer. You don’t really need to get into debt for that MFA.

Dani Abernathy has a guest post on Jane Friedman’s blog about The Forgotten Element of Story – The Author. How much of you are you putting in the story. 


Kris Rusch continues her niche marketing series with an interesting look at how different books in your writing catalogue lend themselves to very different approaches to marketing them. One marketing size does not fit all.


Angela Ackerman asks if writers are breaking the cardinal rule. This is a good wakeup call. You don’t need to rush. Take your time. Get all your writing and publishing goals in a line.


Now Novel has a great post on what to think about when you are planning a series of novels.



In The Craft Section,

The difference between author tone and author voice- Laurel Osterkamp- Bookmark

How to write fight scenes- Glen Strathy- Bookmark

Creating believable characters- Ane Mulligan

Why cinematic technique in fiction is important – C S Lakin- Bookmark

Rising Action definition and examples – NowNovel- Bookmark


In The Marketing Section.

How to promote with a press release- Penny Sansevieri

2 interesting posts from Draft to Digital- Selling with promo stacking and Choosing a title to hook your reader- Bookmark both

How to write a prologue- Bookbaby

How to find your book marketing niche- Colleen Story- Bookmark


To Finish

Writers need readers. We could just write for ourselves but there is a special thrill of knowing someone has read your story and liked it. We need to be promoting readers and reading wherever we can. New Zealand has a new reading ambassador. A children’s librarian who is passionate about reading. A child who reads will be an adult who reads and buys our work. Alan Dingley has a great post on this that you might like to share around.


I recently came across a company making Short Story Dispensers. You can get free short stories printed out on a receipt style role. Just right for libraries and learning institutions. You can load them up with local short stories or a wider selection. You just need an account, and a dispenser. I didn’t see a way of protecting author copyright and compensation. But that’s an easy fix isn’t it? 





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Pic: Photo by Matthieu Joannon on Unsplash

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